Michigan Tech Research Institute (MTRI)

Development of Mapping and Modeling Tools

Satellite-based Mapping

Remote sensing, including aerial and satellite imagery as well as underwater acoustic imagery, are being analyzed to quantitatively and efficiently assess both the regional extent of EWM (identifying newly invaded areas at an early stage without intensive field monitoring based on the spectral characteristics of EWM) and the local outcomes of EWM treatments, enabling managers to monitor the impacts of and improve the techniques used for combating this invader and restoring natural habitat in important coastal areas of the Great Lakes.

Satellite view of Torch Lake.
High-resolution WorldView-2 satellite image of the Torch Lake area collected in September 2014.

Sonar Surveying

Using ultra-high resolution EdgeTech Side Scan Sonar from the Michigan Technological University Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC), the aquatic vegetation in the study areas is being surveyed by boat.

Map and sonar pictures from Torch Bay.
EdgeTech sonar data collected in Torch Bay in summer 2014.

Hydrodynamic Modeling

Advanced next-generation, Great Lakes numerical, hydrodynamic modeling is underway at the (GLRC) at Michigan Tech, utilizing the new supercomputer, Superior. This is critical for our understanding of potential dispersal paths of EWM propagules and the water and nutrient conditions that foster EWM proliferation.

Grid maps of the Keweenaw Peninsula and Lake Superior.
Finite Volume Coastal Ocean Model (FVCOM) high resolution computational grid operating on the new super computer, Superior, at Michigan Tech for Lake Superior. Top left: The Lake Superior computational grid; Top right: Detailed coastal grid through the Keweenaw Waterway; and Bottom: Resultant water surface flow vectors for a standard wind forcing event.