August 6, 2015

Good news!
A new meteorological station has been installed on the piling cluster. The NY State Canal Corporation completed repairs on the piling cluster earlier this week, and we've installed a new met station. The new system started working at approximately 2:00 pm on August 5.
The new system is still undergoing testing and there might be some glitches on the website due to the transition to new equipment. The new water temperature sensor is installed at an elevation of approximately 378.5 feet, which is typically about 5 feet below the surface in the summer, and about 1.5 feet below the surface when the lake is at winter levels.
A warm thank you to the many people who have written to ask about the status of the station, and to offer their support.

April 9, 2015

The cluster of pilings on which the meteorological station is mounted was damaged by ice around the night of Friday, April 3, 2015. As a result the met station is no longer operational. We are looking in to options for replacing the station - stay tuned for updates!

May 13, 2013

We replaced the station's air temperature and relative humidity sensor on May 13. These data should now be available as normal on the website. The sensor malfunctioned this winter (around 2:20 AM on January 3, 2013). Air temperature and relative humidity records are therefore not available from 03-Jan-2013 to 13-May-2013.

April 9, 2012

The last 6 hours or so of wind, temperature, and relative humidity data are now available in tabular form here. The latest meteorological data is now available here for viewing on smartphones and the like.
Additionally, some issues with daylight savings time have been resolved on the plot and text pages (thanks to everyone who wrote us to point out the discrepancies).

April 3, 2012

Made some changes to plots. Home page now displays plots of the last 24 hours, and 7 days of data. Longterm page plots data going back as far as is available. Also corrected some issues with daylight savings time.

December 2, 2011

A water temperature sensor was added to the suite of instruments on the Front Light piling cluster. It sits at an elevation of 376.6', a depth of approximately 6' when the lake is at standard summer levels of 383' and 3' in when the lake is at standard winter levels of 380'.

September 16, 2011

Meteorological station installed on the Front Light piling cluster today. It is self-powered via solar panels and we intend for it to operate year-round. It communicates to shore via a 900 Mhz bridge and the data, collected every 10 minutes, are posted to the website every 30 minutes during sunlight hours and twice during the night.

October 8, 2010

It looks like the RUSS has been hit by a boat, and one of the solar panels was damaged. We're working to fix the system but there is a chance it will not be back on line until the spring.
We're trying to figure out when the accident took place to help in diagnosing the system to see if anything else needs to be fixed beside the panel and batteries. We realize accidents happen, but any information on when the accident occurred could help us get the system running again. Knowing about the accident earlier might have helped prevent further damages (like the batteries being drained beyond repair) and made it easier to get the system back on line sooner.
If you know anything about the accident, or if there is a date in September that you either first saw the damaged panel or had a good look and know for sure that it was still in good shape please let us know. You can either email us at or call (or leave a message after hours) at (607) 255-5140.

September 28, 2010

The RUSS battery and charge circuits have been having some trouble lately. The station has not been operating since Saturday 9/25. We will try to fix this as resources and schedules allow.

August 24, 2010

The website was stuck yesterday afternoon and this morning due to a software glitch. This should be taken care of now. Thanks to all the people who emailed to let us know.

July 06, 2010

We lowered the surface water temperature probe a bit deeper under the buoy. It looks like it was previously located too near the metal frame of the buoy, and was getting heated up by the sun. The readings seem more accurate now.

June 25, 2010

It looks like the surface water temperature sensor is either not placed correctly, or not calibrated (it's showing temperatures that are too warm), and that the wind direction is also not calibrated. We'll take care of this as soon as we have a chance.

June 23, 2010

The RUSS was deployed on the lake today around mid-day. Currently the meteorological is online, the underwater profiler will be added soon.

June 8, 2010

The RUSS has been set up on shore while we finish some testing and get the anchor system ready. Note that at its present location the water temperature sensor is out of the water and that the wind is partially blocked, especially from the south.

October 27, 2009

The RUSS has been removed from the lake for the season. It is currently on the shore and is still reporting to the website for the time being. Note that at its present location the wind is partially blocked especially from the south, and the surface water temperature sensor is out of the water.

August 11, 2009

We recalibrated the compass today around noon. Wind directions recorded between 10:30AM on 08/05/09 and 12:30 on 08/11/09 are not accurate (shifted about 45 degrees).

August 5, 2009

While working on the RUSS solar sensor we accidentally shifted the compass calibration. Wind directions are therefore not accurate starting about 10:30AM on 08/05/09. We will recalibrate the sensor as soon as possible.

June 15, 2009

The RUSS has been redeployed on June 13, 2009. Currently only the met station is running.

The wind sensor's compass was recalibrated around noon on June 15. Please note that wind directions from the last few days prior to this time might be off by up to 45 degrees.

November 21, 2008

The RUSS has been taken off the water for the winter as of 11/21/08.

Look for us again in the spring!

June 16, 2008

The RUSS has been deployed on the lake. Currently only the met station is running, the water quality components will be added soon. Please note that the wind direction sensor is not calibrated. Getting the RUSS ready for deployment this year involved replacing one solar panel, the charge control circuits, one of the modems used to upload data, the three orange marker floats and the main underwater cable, all of which had failed. We also had to repair an additional solar panel and rewire the communications antenna among other things.

November 28, 2007

Check out this column in the Ithaca Journal regarding future monitoring of southern Cayuga Lake.

November 13, 2007

The RUSS has been removed from the lake on November 13, 2007. It is planned to be redeployed this spring with Cornell funding.

October 24, 2007

The RUSS has been acting up lately. It appears there is a problem with the solar panels or charge control circuits. The website will probably have limited functionality for the next few days until this is fixed.

October 5, 2007

The role of the RUSS in a possible collaborative monitoring plan for southern Cayuga Lake was mentioned in this article in the Cornell Chronicle.

August 14, 2007

The RUSS has been deployed in the lake after more than a year and a half out of the water. The return of RUSS to service is being funded by Cornell University this year. This support comes through Cornell's ongoing commitment to monitor the health of Cayuga Lake. Responding to an invitation on August 1, 2006, Cornell has joined with the Tompkins County Water Resources Council to form a partnership to guide the overall monitoring of the southern end of Cayuga Lake. The return of the RUSS station into service was deemed to be a priority of this partnership.

June 15, 2007

We've recently recovered the RUSS anchor system with help from Dennis Montgomery of the Floating Classroom. Dennis has been a great friend of the RUSS and we are grateful for his support both on and off the water.

Sept 2, 2005

The profiler has been having power trouble lately, triggering an automatic shutdown of the profiler system and producing the erratic profile schedule of the past week or two.

Because this is likely a fairly complex problem to diagnose requiring the removal of the RUSS from the lake (which no one likes to see), we'll be trying a few simple fixes to try and get the profiler working correctly, but can't guarantee it will return to normal anytime soon.

Otherwise, the RUSS has been fairly well behaved recently and we hope it will continue to be. Don't forget the Inlet cleanup mentioned on the front page. More information in this flyer.

Aug 18, 2005

Communication was restored today after the outage on Day 208. We apologize for the extened outage, but the RUSS is currently a minor project in our lab since it is no longer funded. Hopefully, any future outages will not last this long. During the outage however, we were able to replace the batteries so the missed profiles which were happening at the beginning of the month will no longer be a problem.

June 18, 2005

The longterm page has been updated and now includes year to date water column temperature profile, surface wind stress, wind speed, wind direction, air temperature, surface water temperature, relative humidity, and light plots in that order. It will be updated every four hours with the water column profiles.

June 15, 2005

In case you haven't noticed, the light sensor (lower right corner on the met page) has been reading zero for the past several weeks. Everything we can easily check looks fine, so right now, we don't know why the sensor isn't working. The most likely thing at this point is a cable failure which will require a new sensor and a calm day to install. At this point, we can not say when we will have the light sensor working again.

In other news, we've changed the surface wind stress component plots on the front and longterm pages. These are now signed values, allowing the determination of wind direction as well as magnitude. Wind blowing from the north will show as a negative red line, from the south as a positive red line. Wing blowing from the west will appear as a positive blue line, while wind from the east will appear as a negative blue line.

Using the above conventions, a wind out of the northwest (see Day 145.4 on either the front page or longterm page) will show as a strong negative red component with a mild blue component. This would be the opposite if the wind was blowing from the southeast (just before Day 150.4).

May 19, 2005

Conductivity plots will be offline until tomorrow. The wrong sensing range was specified when setting up the profiler. We plan on fixing this tomorrow afternoon, at which point all plots will be active.

May 18, 2005

The RUSS is now fully operational. Communication has been restored and should function normally. However, as we were not able to determine the exact cause of the problem, it could recur in the future.

The plots will look a little strange for the first several hours while we build up a data history. Water plots will take slightly longer as a seven day history is displayed. The longterm plots on the front page will take much longer, requiring a full months data before they will look normal.

If you notice any troubles please email us at and be sure to include Cayuga Lake RUSS in the subject otherwise your message will be filtered as spam.

May 9, 2005

The RUSS was redeployed slightly west of it's traditional location near the centerline of the lake. It is located in approximatley 27 m of water and currently only has the meteorological station active. We expect to add the profiler at the end of this week. Communication is not possible currently until we reposition the antenna at the base station. Look for communication to be online within the next day or two.