Michigan News

Jussi Åkerberg, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of AW-Energy Oy (Photo: AW-Energy Oy)

US Patent Approval for Wave Energy

watching with interest.  It comes at a time when national power grids are being stress-tested and impacted by outages, the most recent experienced in the UK causing chaos and disruption across England and Wales.  Other recent power cuts have severely impacted the US in areas such as Wisconsin, Michigan and Texas as well as South America, India and in Australia.The USTPO Patent Approval for WaveRoller provides further reassurance of AW-Energy’s approach on protecting the commercial opportunities for its technology and offshore energy expertise

(Photo: NOAA)

NOAA Scientists Honored for Innovative Research

scientific leadership they have brought to their respective fields, and I am confident they will move NOAA and the Nation forward by advancing science and technology.”Meet the winners:Eric Anderson, a physical scientist at NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, for leading innovative research in hydrodynamic forecasting to address many of the Great Lakes’ most pressing issues, including harmful algal blooms, extreme storm conditions, and oil spill response.Michelle Barbieri, a veterinary medical officer at NOAA’s Pacific Islands Fisheries

ASV BEN (Bathymetric Explorer and Navigator) is a custom prototype built by SV Global Unmanned Marine System for University of New Hampshire’s Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping. ASV BEN has a state-of-the art seafloor mapping system that can map depths reaching 650 feet. (Photo: Ocean Exploration Trust)

Searching for Shipwrecks

The ice had barely retreated from the coast of northern Lake Huron this spring when a group of farflung researchers converged in Rogers City, Michigan. They were there to map unexplored areas of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. If all went well, they would discover new shipwrecks and natural features such as sinkholes, fish habitats, and interesting geological formations.During the two-week expedition, researchers mapped areas within the sanctuary with a multibeam sonar system aboard autonomous surface vehicle ASV BEN (Bathymetric Explorer and Navigator) from University of New Hampshire’s

(Photo: NOAA)

Average Sized Dead Zone Expected in the Gulf of Mexico

Mission Area.This is the first year NOAA is conducting the Gulf dead zone forecast independently.  It is the culmination of a multi-year academic-federal partnership to develop a suite of NOAA-supported hypoxia forecast models. The partnership included teams of researchers at the University of Michigan, Louisiana State University, William & Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science, North Carolina State University and the USGS. Some of these groups are also developing independent forecasts, released in coordination with NOAA and using the USGS data.NOAA and its partners continue to

A 25-foot section of inland underwater oil barrier is laid out on a dock prior to deployment, Monday, April 23, 2018, in Kalamazoo, Mich. The three-foot high barrier is made of PVC and X-Tex fabric, and is designed to let water flow through while trapping oil. Weighted chains and scour flaps prevent oil and sediment from flowing underneath the barrier. (U.S. Coast Guard Photo courtesy of Research and Development Center)

Coast Guard Tests Underwater Oil Barrier System

of Morrow Lake, and tested two different anchoring methods. The anchoring method is dependent on river depth, type of substrate of the river bottom, and resources available to oil spill responders at the time of an incident. Local U.S. Environmental Protection Agency representatives and the Northern Michigan regional director from the office of Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., observed portions of the test.This is one of several efforts the RDC is undertaking to improve spill response capabilities for non-floating oil because of the increasing transport of oil sands and diluted bitumen, known as dilbit. Depending

(Photo: Moira Harrington)

Revving Up a New ROV

Historical Society. She packed along bright yellow bags complete with Mylar clipboards used to sketch wrecks and measuring tapes that define watery archaeological sites. Kiefer wasn’t scuba diving for the day, so the group would explore via the ROV.Kiefer had also participated in the 2017 Lake Michigan Denis Sullivan excursion and was happy to reunite with Kurth and Nelson for the day’s quest for underwater treasures.“I learned a lot from the teachers on that cruise and I want to continue that learning,” Kiefer said. She said she was looking forward to seeing how the educators

© BJ Ray / Adobe Stock

How Could a ‘Sand Motor’ Help the Great Lakes?

;   Shea, a sophomore from Holmen, Wis., who is majoring in civil and environmental engineering, will present her findings at UW-Madison's Undergraduate Research Symposium on April 13.    Major questions under consideration include whether a Dutch-style sand motor could work along Lake Michigan and what implementation challenges it might present. "It's a rough, theoretical, 'Is this worth looking into?' type of study," said Shea.   While bluff erosion is a concern, lack of bluff erosion can also be problematic. "Using traditional gray seawalls and those kinds of structures

(Photo: U.S. Coast Guard)

600 Gallons of Coolant Spills into Straits of Mackinac

Hundreds of gallons of mineral oil has been released from a leaking underwater utility line in Michigan’s Straits of Mackinac, this week.    Initial reports from the responsible party, American Transmission Company (ATC), indicate that approximately 600 gallons of product has been released, with maximum spill potential of more than 4,000 gallons.   The U.S. Coast Guard said it has established a Unified Command comprised of Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, county emergency managers, local tribes, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S.

Erie Hack was a $100,000 innovation challenge that activated more than 200 techies, creative thinkers, entrepreneurs and environmentalists from six cities around in the U.S. and Canada to tackle Lake Erie’s key challenges with creative tech solutions. (© Gerald Bernard / Adobe Stock)

Erie Hack: The Start to the Smart Lake

(HABs), the type of ecological disaster that deprived Toledo residents of public water in 2014. Current research suggests that blooms of this scale will become an annual norm, threatening a regional loss of $1.3 billion over the next 30 years. This looming crisis has prompted the governments of Ohio, Michigan and Ontario to pledge a 40% reduction in nutrient pollution of Lake Erie by 2025.   CWA and DigitalC saw that the Erie Hack teams were onto something; projects funded by these regional governments, like the Sandusky Bay Initiative, are placing Lake Erie at the cutting edge of nutrient pollution

Choctaw. Photo: Ocean Explorer, NOAA

Two Shipwrecks Found in Lake Huron

nominated for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.   Funded by a grant from NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, the project was made possible through research partnerships with NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, University of Delaware, Michigan Technological University, Northwest Michigan College, and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.  

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