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Research Towers

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Harvard Forest maintains 5 research towers.  

To work on or around the towers, first you must contact Meg Fuchs, Director of Administration & Facilities AND fill out a research application

All users of the walk-up towers must abide by the tower safety guidelines.  In addition, gas tanks used for tower research must follow the gas tank protocol

[Hardwood Tower Walkup]

Environmental Measurement Station Eddy Flux Tower (EMS)

Begun in 1990, atmospheric measurements are taken from a 30m eddy flux tower. Primary electrical cable and telephone line extend to the site, 1.7 km into the forest from the headquarters building. Carbon dioxide and many other atmospheric trace gases (e.g. methane and other hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, and ozone) are measured at this site.

Hardwood Walk-Up Tower

This canopy-level walk-up tower was installed October 2014.  It is located 400 m SW of the EMS tower and 240 m SW of the NEON tower. 
Dimensions: 92’ h x 7’ wide x 13’ long (13 stages of 7’ each)

[Hemlock Flux Tower View]

Hemlock Flux Tower

This 33 m Rohn 45GSR tower was installed in October 2013. It is located 10 m to the east of the hemlock walk-up tower. Flux measurements were started in July 2014 along with basic wind, temperature, relative humidity, a light measurements.

Barn Tower

This 36 m Rohn 65 G was installed in September 2009. It serves as the starting point of the HF field wireless network and a platform for above canopy research.

Retired Towers

Hemlock Walk-Up Tower

[View from Above of Hemlock Walkup]

This canopy-level walk-up tower was in operation beginning in November 2000 and was removed in April 2024 due to structural deficiencies and the completion of much of its associated research. The remaining research equipment was relocated to the Hemlock Flux Tower. Previously located in the Prospect Hill Tract in a mature hemlock stand approximately 0.5 km from the EMS tower, the tower was 71.5' tall x 3' wide x 5' long (11 stages of 6.5' each). Carbon exchange data between 2000 and 2022 and related publications can be found here