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Science in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor

You might start seeing this “SolarBee” floating in the harbor soon.

Blue Water Baltimore, the Baltimore Harbor Waterkeeper and KCI Technologies are partnering up on a pilot project to study the aeration and mixing in the waters of Baltimore’s harbor.

The project will determine the scope of engineering and scientific skills needed to design a system that would reduce low oxygen “dead zones,” which form throughout the summer months. Those zones are responsible for wide-spread fish-kills that you’ve seen (and smelled?) around the harbor before.

A solar-powered “SolarBee” aeration and mixing device will be anchored in the harbor off the end of the Recreation Pier at 1715 Thames St. in Fells Point starting Thursday.

The pilot study program will monitor and track dissolved oxygen, the temperature of the water, salinity, density and conductivity.  Getting that information will help the companies create devices to reduce those “dead zones.”

Funding for the program comes from a $100,000 grant from the Abell Foundation. KCI will be conducting the monitoring of the program.

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