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EQWin Data Model

Database tables and table contents

This page describes the tables and data fields contained in an EQWin database.

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close Stations

Sampling stations are usually point locations such as discharge outlets, wells, piezometers, surface points, monitoring equipment such as stream gauges and so on. They can also represent general areas such as plantsites.

Station attributes include an identifying station code, name, description, type, geographic coordinates (latitude/longitude, easting/northing, local grid), associated standard (such as a permit pertaining to the station) and more.

close Parameters

Parameters are the physical, chemical and biological properties of samples. EQWin supports both quantitative (measurable) and qualitative (non-numeric) parameters.

Measured parameters These are the quantifiable physical, chemical and biological properties of samples.

Qualitative (non-numeric) parameters These are sample properties described by text rather than numbers. If you indicate that a particular parameter is allowed to have text values, then non-numeric input will be accepted during data entry.

Calculated parameters This unique feature of EQWin lets you set up parameters that are calculated from the values of other measured parameters in a sample. For example, you could set up a parameter called "dissolved metals" that is the sum of dissolved copper, iron, lead, zinc, etc. Once set up, calculated parameters can be used on reports, graphs and maps the same way as measured parameters.

close Standards

"Standards" means any limits that you may need to comply with, including:

  • government standards
  • permits
  • industry guidelines
  • corporate objectives.

You can set up any number of standards in an EQWin database. Standards can be associated with sampling stations. For example, a permit may be associated with a discharge point.

Fixed standard values These are set limits that a result should not exceed. The limit may be a maximum and/or a minimum. In the case of a maximum, you can specify whether a result must less than the limit or less than or equal to the limit in order to be in compliance. Likewise for a minimum, you can indicate whether the result should be greater than or greater than or equal to the limit.

Calculated standard values This unique feature of EQWin lets you set up standard values that vary depending on the sample matrix. For instance, standard values are sometimes related to the acidity or alkalinity of a sample.

close Samples

EQWin provides a wide range of commonly-used sample and sample result attributes. Not all of it is required to be entered; you can enter minimal information if that is all that is available. You can also enter information in stages as it becomes available, and EQWin will find the previous information and merge the new with it.

Multiple samples are often taken at the same location, date and time for quality assurance purposes and other reasons. The EQWin data model supports sample duplicates, replicates, splits, blanks and spikes.

Sample attributes include an identifying sample number, location, date, time, classification codes, sampling method, sampling agency and/or person, sample matrix, sample comments and other sample characteristics.

Sample results

A sample is normally associated with one or more results obtained by field measurement or laboratory analysis.

The attributes for individual results include:

  • result parameter
  • result value
  • result quality
  • sampling protocol
  • laboratory
  • preparation method
  • analytical method
  • method detection level
  • date/time received
  • date/time prepared
  • date/time analyzed
  • comments

Results values are most often numeric, but they may also be text. Blank values are also supported (by entering a special character), because they may indicate that a particular parameter was considered but could not be analyzed for some reason.

Result values in EQWin always preserve the original significant figures provided during data entry.

close User-defined calculations

User-defined calculations (UDC's) are a versatile and powerful feature of EQWin.

A UDC consists of a series of calculation steps which use data values from a sample to calculate a result based on those values. For example, you could define a calculation called "dissolved metals" that is the sum of dissolved copper, iron, lead, zinc and other metals.

UDC's have three important uses in EQWin:

  • to define data validation procedures that can be used to check data being imported into a database
  • to compute calculated parameter values for use on reports, graphs and maps
  • to compute calculated standards which are based on sample conditions
close Other tables
  • Laboratory information
  • Sampling protocol information
  • Analytical method information
  • User-definable unit conversions
  • User-definable lists of valid codes for database fields such as units, station type, sampling method and others
close User-defined fields

EQWin provides a comprehensive set of database fields for the most common properties of the environmental entities that it models. For some entities, you can also create your own user-defined attribute fields to handle specific monitoring program requirements.

User-defined fields are fully supported at all stages in EQWin in the same way as built-in fields.

User-defined fields are supported for these tables:

  • Sampling stations
  • Parameters
  • Standards
  • Samples

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