Resources and facilities
In the summer of 2016 the Geography and Environment Study Area moved into a redesigned and refurbished building that houses all academic teaching and research staff.
Postdocs and PhD students have individual work stations in open plan offices. Undergraduates have their own project laboratory, a large break-out space and a dedicated teaching laboratory. All student-facing administrators and other support staff are located within the building. Purpose-built, state-of-the-art laboratories extend over approximately 800m2 where teaching and research activities are supported by a Laboratory Manager, two full-time technicians and a dedicated Geospatial and Geographical Information Technician.
The Department maintains a meteorological station on campus, which also houses sensors used by the Environment Agency, and runs several environmental monitoring stations, including the Loughborough University Stream Temperature Network (LUTEN) on the Rivers Dove and Manifold. In addition, the Department has joint ownership of a 3 x 3m rainfall simulator that was designed to investigate pluvial flooding in urban areas, a small wind-tunnel used primarily for teaching and greenhouse facilities for plant science research.
The Department maintains an extensive set of field equipment for field research and teaching in human and physical geography:
- surveying equipment, including multiple differential GPS, a robotic total station and multiple Personal Digital Assistants with GIS and integral GPS
- an unmanned aircraft system (drone) for aerial photography
- Ground Penetrating Radar for investigating subsurface stratigraphy and mapping subsurface water and ice
- environmental monitoring equipment including an array of water quality sondes, pressure transducers, temperature and light sensors, automatic water samplers and data logging and telemetry systems
- equipment for measuring plant and vegetation characteristics including a soil respiration/photosynthesis system and sensors for measuring photosynthetically active radiation and leaf chlorophyll content
- aeolian research equipment including sonic anemometers, a field spectroradiometer and dust and sediment traps
- equipment for lake research, including lake-sediment coring devices, lake sediment traps and inflatable boats, engines and safety equipment
- river flow velocimetry equipment, including horizontal and vertical Acoustic Doppler Profilers, electro-magnetic current meters and an insitu current logger
- soil and river sediment sampling equipment including corers, a freeze-core device and McNeil sampler
- ruggedized laptops and iPads
- two fieldwork vehicles – an all-terrain Toyota twincab pickup and a Citroen Berlingo.