You can view, analyze and download Citizen Sense collected air-quality data on criteria air pollutants using the Airsift Frackbox Data Analysis Toolkit. The data was collected at sites nearby natural gas infrastructure, using the prototype Frackbox device.

Frackboxes recorded data for nitrogen oxide (NO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ground-level ozone (O3) and total volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which include benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene (BTEX), halomethanes and glutaraldehyde. Eight to ten days of data per site was collected, and this open data is now available through the Citizen Sense Airsift Frackbox Data Analysis Toolkit. Select one or to days of data to view the data in more detail.

The Frackboxes were installed for 7 months, however the data is not continuous as there were issues with network connectivity and data storage due to a bug in the software. We are working on fixing this for the next iteration! At one site the solar panels were covered in deep snow, and did not have power for two months. Two of the Frackboxes also experienced broken clocks so we were unable to use this data. Please note at this point the data is unratified. We may scale and ratify the data in the future. The very high readings and very low readings at the beginning of each monitoring indicate the sensor heating up so should be discounted.

The Frackbox is an early prototype and may have detection differences of around 20 ppb (sometimes more) between the Frackboxes. Error standards typically fall between 10 to 40 ppb (depending upon the country where air quality monitoring is undertaken). Due to these detection differences, it is more useful to use the Frackbox to observe changes and identify sources, rather than to use the measurements as direct comparisons to regulatory standards. The polar plot is a useful plot to show the relationship between wind direction and pollutants for the entire monitoring period.

Monitoring Sites

Data was collected at 3 sites in northeastern Pennsylvania, USA, over a period of 7 months, including during the Citizen Sense workshop and walk monitoring event. The Frackboxes were placed at sites selected by citizens, and were located near fracking infrastructure and at the intersections between infrastructure and peoples’ homes in Susquehanna and Wyoming Counties, Pennsylvania. Similar to the Speck data, the Frackboxes are identified by Township location place names in order to blur the exact monitoring location.

Frackbox 1

Frackbox 1 at Springville N was located in Springville Township, Pennsylvania, 80 feet from a compressor station, located southwest to southeast of the Frackbox. Nearby to the monitoring site, there was also a well pad 700 feet north to northeast of the Frackbox, and a dehydrator 150 feet northwest of the monitor.

Frackbox 2 & 4

Frackboxes 2 and 4 were located in Washington Township, Pennslyvania, in a site heavily populated with natural gas infrastructure. Hydraulic fracturing infrastructure nearby the monitoring location included a large compressor station 1/2 mile east to southeast, a dehydrator and well pad 1400 feet north, and second well pad 900 feet southeast of the monitoring location.

Frackbox 3

Frackbox 3 was located in the proximity of 3 natural-gas compressor stations. In relation to the monitoring site, one compressor station was located 3000 feet southeast, another compressor station was located 5000 feet southwest (and was visible from the monitoring location), and a third compressor station was located 7500 feet north. The monitor was positioned approximately 90 feet east of a dirt track access road. There were 4 operating well pads within 5000 feet of the monitoring location, with the first well pad located to the southeast, the second and third well pads located to the west, and the fourth well pad located to the north.


Please see the Terms & Conditions for using Frackbox data and PM 2.5 data, as well as for using the Airsift PM2.5 Data Analysis Toolkit or the Airsift Frackbox Data Analysis Toolkit.

Images: Frackbox installation digrams, Kelly Finan for Citizen Sense (2015). All other images Citizen Sense (2015).

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