Fog was an almost daily occurrence in the early years of Skyline College. Staff and faculty became disoriented in the fog and wandered aimlessly attempting to locate cars. When cars were finally found, headlight beams bounced off the fog. Cars formed convoys in the attempt to locate the access road to Skyline Boulevard. However, the USGS reports that summer fog has decreased by 33% over the last century.
Working with Energize Colleges, our Phi Theta Kappans spent the summer measuring the fog. The fog catcher is on Building 4 and precipitation is collected in an attached rain gauge. Historically the foggy months start from May and end in October: Thus far was have had 28 foggy days with an average of 5.8 cm/m2 of precipitation on those days. The fog is 0.03% sodium chloride (table salt), about 100 times less salty than the ocean. The acidity is the same as clean rainwater (pH 5).
In accordance with Skyline College’s plan to create a more sustainable campus environment, we aim to assess the potential benefits collecting fog water can provide the campus. We would like to find out if it is possible to reuse the collected fog water for daily purposes. The fog team: Michelle Huang, Gracia Trejo, Thiri Htun, Michael Wong, and Thanh Nguyen will continue their measurements and analyses through October.
Article by Christine Case