BEACON is a new approach to observing atmospheric gases over an urban area. Instead of using a small number of extremely sensitive instruments to measure a large area, we blanket interesting locations with a high density network of instruments, with each instrument representing a network “node.” Individually, measurements from these nodes are of moderate quality, but when taken together as a network produce an accurate, highly resolved picture of real-time pollutant concentrations. Each node measures carbon dioxide, a major anthropogenic (human-influenced) contributor to climate change, and reports back to this site where the collected data is publicly available for viewing and download. The nodes also collect data on nitrogen oxides, ozone, and carbon monoxide which are indicators for the overall air quality of an area, and may be useful for tracing the origins of CO2 emissions. These data are not yet ready for public viewing, but will be added to the site soon.
UPDATE (Oct 22, 2015): BEACON is currently undergoing a refurbishment of its wireless communication system, which will temporarily interrupt the live stream of data at some nodes. Please note that during this process some sites may appear "inactive" on the map below while still actively collecting data, which will be added to the online portal at a later date. In the meantime, archived observations and realtime observations from select sites are still available on our Sites and Data page.