Lake Champlain Research Consortium Priorities 2004
Hydrodynamics and Sediment Dynamics
2004 Priorities meeting, LCRC determined that
would be a high priority for research for the next several years –
“program 1” below and also see PRIME
predictive modeling capabilities with fully three-dimensional numerical
models, such as the Princeton Ocean Model.
Simpler models, both numerical and analytical, should also be
encouraged as part of a suite of tools for gaining insight into lake
physics. A significant
observational database for currents, temperature, and meteorology should
exist and be used in helping to test model adequacy. Once the adequacy of the hydrodynamic
model is established additional model enhancements that include various
biogeochemical processes of interest should be included as dictated by
data and theory. Research that
attempts to synthesize existing data should be explored on a regular basis
for both assessing the current level of knowledge and understanding of
lake physics and for identifying major observational data needs.
to develop and apply new techniques and instrumentation for exploring both
the main body of Lake Champlain and also other regions of the lake that
have received little attention in the fields of hydrodynamics and sediment
movement. Examples of some of these would be basic observations in the
Restricted Arm, causeway effects on flow dynamics, long-term flow meters
at the causeways, insitu measurements of sediment characteristics,
interpretation of sidescan sonar records for paleo- and present-day
currents, lagrangian observations (surface and sub-surface), and acoustic
thermometry of the lake. Future research that focuses on observational
data must be jointly supported by addressing larger to whole-lake scale
issues through state-of-the-art numerical models.
and enhance over water meteorological measurements in support of both
hydrodynamic and atmospheric research.
Accurate knowledge of the meteorological forcing on Lake Champlain
is a critical part of the potential success for any numerical modeling
efforts on lake circulation and mixing. The observational network should
be of sufficient spatial resolution to resolve the major features of Lake
Champlain’s meteorology. Present estimates are that 3-4 more sites on the
lake should be established, particularly in the Inland Sea, Missisquoi
Bay, Crown Point Bridge and the South Lake.
long-term monitoring sites for investigating the interannual variability
in thermal structure and for establishing a database suitable for
climatology studies at 2 or 3 sites within the lake. Most of the existing
data collected on Lake Champlain has been seasonal in nature and there is
a need for continuous time-series observations. If at all possible, these
site should have real-time downlink capabilities.
an easily accessible, publicly available, database for Lake Champlain
research data. Preferably it would
be a web site such as the LCRC and visitors to the web site would be able
to download various types of data that have been collected since the LCRC
began. Principal Investigators
would be allowed proprietary use of their data but after a certain time
period, for example one to three years, it would be made available to the
public via the chosen web site.
This would make it significantly easier for researchers to
participate in Lake Champlain studies from both within and without the
current Lake Champlain community.
Interdisciplinary Research with Hydrodynamics – Program 1 – Missisquoi
1) The most
beneficial and overarching program would be that of the “Cause and Effect of
Missisquoi Bay Algal Blooms”. This is a very visible topic that virtually all
funding sources can participate in and would also be international in its
makeup. Pertinent questions that could be asked for the various divisions would
Nutrients, Lower Food Web, Toxics, Ecosystem
Health, and Fish:
1) Does the
wind driven circulation provide observable change in the food web?
2) Does wind-driven circulation provide observable
changes in the distribution of cyanobacteria?
3) Can some of the older (previously mapped) and/or
newer carcinogens be found in the region?
Sediment, Sediment Resuspension and
1) Do sediment
resuspension events occur?
2) If so, do they pump nutrients into the water?
3) What are the influx dynamics of water, sediment
and chemicals entering the region?
1) What would
be the concurrent assessment of policy and public views of recreation and the
1) What is the fate of the sediment (nutrient)
plumes into the bay?
2) Is there a mean or general observable circulation
pattern in the bay?
3) Can algal blooms (safe versus harmful) be
accurately defined in the region?
1) A new met station should be established to provide
needed wind forcing data for the concurrent measurements made by the various
1) Are there cultural artifacts in the bay that need
to be catalogued?
Interdisiplinary Research with
Hydrodynamics – Program 2 – Whole Lake
with the atmospherics division to establish more met stations on the lake in an
effort to improve modeling efforts of both the atmospherics and hydrodynamics
divisions. A useful byproduct would be the enhanced weather information out to
2) The installation of a wave-height measuring
system near the Colchester Reef met station. This would be directly linked to
the met station and would provide real-time information. Usefulness would be to
the hydrodynamics division and the general public.
Interdisiplinary Research with
Hydrodynamics – Program 2 – Data Management
with Vermont and NewYork GIS facilities to establish
a hydrodynamics data base.
with Vermont, NewYork GIS facilities, and the LCBP to
plan and establish an overarching web site to Lake Champlain and its basin.
This would represent the central hub that would redirect any inquiry to the
proper site within the basin.