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Courses - Geography/Geology 100: Earth Science

Janel Curry

Geography 100/Geology 100 students will be gathering daily meteorological data, based on Calvin's campus, during the month of October. This data will be used to enhance the water quality data collected by the Chemistry Department CEAP projects which are also collected during October. October 1998 will be compared to an "average" October. Fall '98 (15 students)

Data on daily precipitation, minimum daily temperatures, maximum daily temperatures, and daily means were collected during October 1998 at the Calvin College Nature Preserve. This data was compared to daily long-term averages for October obtained from the National Weather Service. The October 1998 mean temperature (the monthly mean of the daily maximum and minimum averages) was 53.5 degrees F while the long-term average is 49.5 degrees F. Further analysis of the maximum and minimum temperatures for the month clarified the nature of the higher than average temperatures. The daily maximum temperature for the month fluctuated around the long-term mean with an overall maximum temperature mean for the month of 61.5 degrees F in comparison to the long-term mean for maximum temperatures of 59.8 degrees F. The major finding was that daily minimum temperatures were consistently above the long-term averages, only dipping below the long-term mean minimum on four days. October 1998 minimum temperatures averaged at 45.4 degrees F while the long-term average minimum temperature for the month of October is 39.1 degrees F. The overall precipitation for October 1998, 3.9 inches, was above the long-term mean of 2.81 inches. The above average precipitation was concentrated in the first half of the month when 2.5 inches fell in comparison to the long term average of 1.46 inches. The latter half of the month (Oct 16-3 1) had average recorded levels of precipitation.

Report: Climatic Comparison of October 1998 and Long-Range Averages