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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2020-341
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2020-341
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  14 Jul 2020

14 Jul 2020

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A revised version of this preprint was accepted for the journal HESS and is expected to appear here in due course.

Technical Note: Evaluation of a low-cost evaporation protection method for portable water samplers

Jana von Freyberg1,2,3,, Julia L. A. Knapp1,, Andrea Rücker1, Bjørn Studer1, and James W. Kirchner1,2,4 Jana von Freyberg et al.
  • 1Department of Environmental Systems Science, ETHZ, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland
  • 2Mountain Hydrology and Mass Movements,Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL), 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland
  • 3School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering, EPFL, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 4Department of Earth and Planetary Science, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
  • These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. Automated field sampling of streamwater or precipitation for subsequent analysis of stable water isotopes (2H and 18O) is often conducted with off-the-shelf automated samplers. However, water samples stored in the field for days and weeks in open bottles inside autosamplers undergo isotopic fractionation and vapor mixing, thus altering their isotopic signature. We therefore designed an evaporation protection method which modifies autosampler bottles using a syringe housing and silicone tube, and tested whether this method reduces evaporative fractionation and vapor mixing in water samples stored for up to 24 days in ISCO autosamplers (Teledyne ISCO., Lincoln, US). Laboratory and field tests under different temperature and humidity conditions showed that water samples in bottles with evaporation protection were far less altered by evaporative fractionation and vapor mixing than samples in conventional open bottles. Our design is a cost-efficient approach to upgrade the 1-litre sample bottles of ISCO 6712 Full-size Portable Samplers, allowing secure water sample collection in warm and dry environments. Our design can be readily adapted (e.g., by using a different syringe size) to fit the bottles used by many other field autosamplers.

Jana von Freyberg et al.

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Jana von Freyberg et al.

Jana von Freyberg et al.

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Latest update: 26 Oct 2020
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Short summary
Automated water samplers are often used to collect precipitation and streamwater samples for subsequent isotope analysis, but the isotopic signal of these samples may be altered due to evaporative fractionation occuring during the storage inside the autosamplers the field. In this manuscript we present and evaluate a cost-efficient modification to the Teledyne ISCO automated water sampler that prevents isotopic enrichment through evaporative fractionation of the water samples.
Automated water samplers are often used to collect precipitation and streamwater samples for...
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