Walking past the busy grandstand at the state fair, does it seem hot to you? There might be something to that.
Researcher Phillip Mykleby has installed sensors around the state fair grounds and just outside of them at the St. Paul Campus weather station. He's looking to see if the State Fair creates it's own urban heat island.
An urban heat island is an urban or metropolitan area that is significantly warmer than its surrounding areas due to human activity. Phil is looking to see if the paved surfaces, waste heat from food stands, buildings, and activity of the fair has a noticeable impact on the temperature inside of the fair grounds. He's also comparing different areas of the fair grounds to see if there are things we can do to offset the urban heat island - such as trees, water features, gardens, etc.
The research instruments are set up in 5 locations:
#1. St. Paul Campus Weather Station
#2. Near Eco Experience Building (NW corner)
#3. On DNR grounds (west side near the log cabin)
#4. At corner of Buford Place and Fairview Ave on campus near the Fairgrounds
#5. Near the MPR building
If you are at the fair, keep a watch out for them, but please don't touch or interfere with them as they are actively gathering data and information for this project.