Climate Change Reaches New Depths

New York Times article shares how HOBO temperature data loggers supported an underground urban heat study

Rising temperatures aren't just a concern on the Earth's surface, where terms like heat island and climate change have become far too familiar. As if that weren't enough, for many of the world's cities, what lies beneath is also an issue. Urban heat sources, like electrical and HVAC systems in building basements and transit tunnels, produce massive amounts of heat below ground. That's led to rising subterranean temps that can't cool back down—what's now called "underground climate change." 

That sinking feeling you might be experiencing? It's even more real for cities like Chicago.

A recent New York Times article described a Northwestern University study that looked at excessive underground heat in downtown Chicago and its potential to transform the soils and substrates below the city. The concern is that tiny heat-induced shifts could pose big structural problems for many cities in the not-too-distant future.  

MX2305 temperature data logger monitors temperature near HVAC unit in parking garage
A HOBO MX2305 data logger measures temperature near an HVAC vent in a parking garage

Using...you guessed it...wireless Bluetooth HOBO MX2305 temperature data loggers, the study monitored and evaluated the "degree" of Chicago's underground warming, and the potential impacts it could have on the city's built environment below...before it's too late. 

Installed throughout Chicago's underbelly—basements, transit systems, and parking garages—our rugged, weatherproof temperature loggers helped the research team track how hot it's getting, and where.

You can read the full article here.

For a deep dive into Northwestern University's study, see Dr. Rotta Loria's abstract: The Silent Impact of Underground Climate Change on Civil Infrastructure

HOBO data loggers are on the frontline of climate change monitoring every day—from coral reef mapping to the Canadian urban heat study mentioned in our last post. The good news is that people are also finding solutions! Check out how our loggers are supporting this cooling study about the benefits of urban green spaces, and read about this Korean study on how seaweed's metabolic responses impact its capacity to absorb carbon.

Look for more posts on climate change studies and solutions—coming soon!

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