A Simple Method to Hide Data Loggers Safely in Observation Wells


Hydrogeology Group, Institute of Geological Sciences, Freie Universität Berlin, Malteserstr. 74-100, Berlin 12249, Germany; lorenzen@zedat.fu-berlin.de


Submersible data loggers are widely used for groundwater monitoring, but their application often runs the risk of hardware and data loss through vandalism or theft. During a field study in India, the authors of this article experienced that well locks attract the attention of unauthorized persons and do not provide secure protection in unattended areas. To minimize the risk of losing data loggers, a cheap and simple solution has been invented to hide the instruments and associated attachments below the ground surface, inside observation wells. It relies on attaching the logger to a length of small-diameter pipe that is submerged at the bottom of the well, instead of attaching it to the top of the well. The small-diameter pipe with the logger is connected to a small bottle containing a magnet that floats on the water surface of the well and can be recovered using another bottle also with a magnet. A logger that is concealed in this way is difficult to detect and access without knowledge of the method and adequate removal tools. The system was tested and successfully applied for monitoring shallow observation wells at three field sites in Greater Delhi, India.