October 3 SENSE Seminar: Surviving a Great Lakes rip current

In the last few years, deaths in the Great Lakes as a result of dangerous nearshore currents (longshore currents, rip currents and structurally induced currents) have increased at an alarming rate, averaging 11 fatalities and 25 rescues per year.  Warmer temperatures, increased water levels and storm intensity, and more people at the beach have all contributed to this threat. Mr. Jamie Racklyeft has experienced a near fatal encounter with a Great Lakes rip current and will describe his personal experience and resulting motivation.

On Monday, October 3rd at 5 PM, Racklyeft will talk about his experience and effort to help others avoid the dangers associated with nearshore currents.  His talk, What it’s like to drown: Surviving a Great Lakes rip current, will be held in the East Reading room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library.

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Jamie Racklyeft leads the new Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium with members from eight Great Lakes states and Ontario who partner to increase awareness and safety to end drownings in the Great Lakes.

 

Racklyeft is a Lake Michigan rip current survivor. Exhausted and hopelessly battling the relentless current and waves off Van’s Beach in Leland, Michigan in 2012, he knows he’s lucky to be alive. Since then, he has dedicated himself to helping people avoid, escape, and save others from dangerous currents by applying human-centered design thinking principles and communication strategies.

Currently a Communication Director at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Clinical & Health Research (MICHR), Racklyeft has been in the communication profession for more than 30 years, serving research, corporate, healthcare, non-profit, academic, and entrepreneurial fields. He now leads the new Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium, with members representing all eight Great Lake states and Ontario, working together to end drowning. Racklyeft earned a Master’s in Education from Wayne State University and a Bachelor’s in General Studies from the University of Michigan, focusing on communication, psychology, and art history.

Rachlyeft’s visit and talk is hosted by the SENSE Enterprise, the Department of Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics, and the Great lakes Research Center.

 

Geoheritage: Stamping Through History

Michigan Tech’s on-line research blog “Unscripted: Science and Research” recently published a feature on the geoheritage of the Copper Country.  Geoheritage explores the geological and human history of an area.  Every summer, aboard the university’s research vessel R/V Agassiz, Geotour participants learn about the history of mining in the region and are given a unique viewing of its expansive legacy while researchers from the Great Lakes Research Center  explain the scientific necessity to monitor and understand its evolving impacts.  Click here for the full feature.

Geoheritage Image
Geotour participants aboard the R/V Agassiz. Photo courtesy of University Marketing and Communications.

Local Online Media Highlights GLRC Water Festival

An online blog by Keweenaw Now is featuring photos and an article about the Water Festival held on August 5, 2016 at the Great Lakes Research Center.  The Water Festival was held in celebration of Michigan Tech’s Alumni Reunion and the Keweenaw Science and Engineering Festival.

Click here to view the blog post.

Photos from the event can be viewed here.

2_boats
U.S. Coast Guard’s 47-foot motor life boat and Michigan Tech’s R/V Agassiz, pictured above, provided tours to alumni and Keweenaw Science and Engineering Festival participants. Photo courtesy of Michele Bourdieu.

 

Xinyu Ye Selected as Best Student Poster Presentation at the 20th Conference on Air-Sea Interaction

Environmental engineering PhD candidate Xinyu Ye was selected as having the best student poster presentation at the 20th Conference on Air-Sea Interaction earlier this month.

Sponsored by the American Meteorological Society, the conference was held August 15-19 in Madison, Wisconsin.

Her poster, “Lake-Atmosphere Feedbacks in a Coupled Regional Climate Model Over the Great Lakes,” is about the two-way coupled regional climate modeling over the Great Lakes, which fits well with the research theme of Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center.

Xinyu Ye Best Poster 8_29_16

Buy a Fish Campaign Announced

Alumni and friends are invited to show their support of fresh water research, education and outreach at Michigan Tech. “As Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) continues to evolve into a world-class facility where faculty, students and staff engage in multidisciplinary initiatives, donor support is critical in helping us carry out our mission,” explains Guy Meadows, Director, Great Lakes Research Center and Robbins Professor of Sustainable Marine Engineering. The Buy a Fish program provides an opportunity to recognize individuals and families who contribute to the GLRC. Funds committed through the Buy a Fish campaign will support student development opportunities, new research, and facilities improvements.

Since its construction, the Center has quickly become a premiere location for events offering state-of-the-art meeting technology and a beautiful waterside location. “We’re thrilled to offer donors to the GLRC an opportunity to show the thousands of annual visitors to the facility their commitment to the Center, our mission, and our people,” comments Meadows. The Buy a Fish campaign allows individuals to purchase a personalized acrylic fish that is creatively displayed on a donor wall located in the first floor lobby.

Working with a local company, Industrial Graphics, the donor wall and sample fish will be installed in time for Michigan Tech’s 2016 Alumni Reunion. The fish measure 10 ($250+ donation), 12 ($500+ donation) and 14 ($1,000+ donation) inches in length and will be attached to the display using brushed silver standoffs at varying depths. The wall display is constructed of cabinet-grade birch veneer with a vinyl graphic overlay adding a subtle wave pattern. The fish will be arranged in groups or “schools” based on the giving year.

Artist Rendering of Donor Wall Display

Image above: Artist rendering of the Buy a Fish donor recognition wall in the first floor lobby of Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center. Image below: Sample donor fish.

Sample Donor Fish

On Thursday, August 4th, from 3:00-4:00 PM, the GLRC will dedicate the display. Fish purchased by July 25th will be featured at the August 4th dedication. To buy a fish on-line, use the Support the GLRC link on the Center’s website and specify your two lines of personalized text in the special instructions box. Employees of Michigan Tech can also elect their donation through payroll deduction by contacting the Michigan Tech Fund.

Summer Outreach at the GLRC

Summer is a great time for outreach! Martin Auer, professor of civil and environmental engineering, and Joan Chadde, director of the Center for Science and Environmental Outreach at the GLRC, discuss the 2016 science camps presented by the GLRC. The introduction is followed by a news clip from WLUC.

Community Outdoor Nature Programs

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Michigan Tech Center for Science & Environmental Outreach is coordinating a monthly outdoor program for families and children. Two programs focused on nature exploration are planned each month through December—Monday evenings and Saturday afternoons. There is no need to register and no cost to attend; all are welcome.

Attendees can expect a variety of presenters who will lead each program focused on a different topic. Events are designed to engage parents and children in nature outdoors in a various locations. Information on the events are as follows:

Community Outdoor Nature Programs for Families: free & open to the public

7:30 -11:00 AM, Saturday, Oct 10 ~ Trapping & observations of birds & small mammals
with Jesse Knowlton & Dan Haskell, MTU School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science keweenawlandtrust.org

Find out what lives at the Marsin Nature Area! The Keweenaw Land Trust is looking for citizen scientists (no experience necessary!) to help document observations of birds, small mammals, and other wildlife on the property. The event will be held Saturday, October 10 from 7:30 to 11:00 am. Guided hikes will leave the Retreat at 8:00 am, rain or shine.

6:00-7:30 pm, Monday, Oct. 12 ~ Making Apple Cider (Bring Your Own apples & jugs to take home!) with Chris Hohnholt, MTU School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science, at Nara Nature Center

What to Bring: Dress for the weather. Wear good walking shoes.

This program is funded by the Michigan Association of Environmental Professionals and coordinated by the Western U.P. Center for Science, Math & Environmental Education and the Michigan Tech Center for Science & Environmental Outreach.

As with any outdoor event—dress accordingly for the weather. For more information call 7-3341 or visit wupcenter.mtu.edu.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Contact the Center by calling: 906-487-3341

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SCHEDULE

SATURDAY, OCT. 10, 7:30-11 AM

MARSIN NATURE CENTER

Trapping & observations of birds & small mammals   keweenawlandtrust.org

Jesse Knowlton & Dan Haskell, MTU School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science

MONDAY, OCT. 12, 6:00 PM

NARA NATURE CENTER

Apple cider making – BRING YOUR OWN APPLES & JUGS!

Chris Hohnholt, MTU School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science

SATURDAY, NOV 7, 2:00 PM

MAASTO-HIITO CHALET

Leaf & needle ID: Do you know what’s growing in your backyard?

Denise Landsberg, Outdoor Science Educator, Michigan Tech

MONDAY, NOV 16, 6:00 PM

NARA NATURE CENTER

Sensory night hike: Discover your senses coming alive at night!

Marcy Erickson, Outdoor Science Educator, Michigan Tech

SATURDAY, DEC.12, 2:00 PM

NARA NATURE CENTER

Finding your way: Compasses & treasure hunts

Denise Landsberg, Outdoor Science Educator, Michigan Tech

MONDAY, DEC 7, 6:00 PM

NARA NATURE CENTER

Luminary night walk at the Nara Boardwalks

Marcy Erickson, Outdoor Educator, Michigan Tech

Lake Superior Water Festival

IMG_4231aby Joan Chadde

Nearly 500 9th-12th grade students in 18 classes from 10 schools in Houghton, Baraga, Gogebic and Ontonagon Counties flooded MTU’s Great Lakes Research Center on Wednesday, September 30th. Schools from as close as Hancock, Lake Linden, and Dollar Bay, in addition to schools from as far away as Ironwood, Watersmeet, Baraga and L’Anse, spent one-half day at Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center as part of the 4th Annual Lake Superior Water Festival. More than 15 different sessions were offered throughout the day, presented by Michigan Tech faculty, staff, students, community organizations, government agencies, educators, and authors.

The Water Festival provides an opportunity for students to learn about and celebrate our most precious natural resource – clean, fresh water! A wide variety of topics related to Lake Superior and the Great Lakes, from science & engineering to social studies and the arts were presented. Students attended four 35-minute activities. Some of the offerings included: Remotely-Operated- Vehicles, forest hydrology, Great Lakes & climate change, Leave No Trace Outdoors, River of Words, Remote Sensing, U.S. Coast Guard, and more.

The 2015 Water Festival is made possible with funding from Earth Force, Michigan Tech Center for Water & Society, the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative, and Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative. The Festival is coordinated by the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative and hosted by Michigan Tech’s Great Lake Research Center.

See the 2015 Lake Superior Water Festival Photo Gallery

See a Video: Great Lakes – Lake Superior Water Festival

UpperMichigan Source News Story: Water Fest aims to get students interested in STEM fields

Lake Superior Water Festival Sep 30, 2015 at Great Lakes Research Center at Michigan Tech
Lake Superior Water Festival Sep 30, 2015 at Great Lakes Research Center at Michigan Tech

2015 Water Festival Activity Descriptions

All Day Sessions

1. Find Your Fish
Students will explore the role of the Lake Superior food web in providing the energy and mineral nutrition required to grow a Lake Trout. Hands on activities will include microscopic examination of the plankton and examination of the creatures who inhabit the lake bottom mud.

Dr. Marty Auer, MTU Dept of Civil & Environmental Engineering
Graduate & Undergraduate Students
Location: 102 Great Lakes Research Center

2. Physics of Water
Explore how water interacts with the world around it. Investigate how water interacts with light, magnets, electricity, and heat. Then delve into some of the properties that make water unique like surface tension, the unique way it freezes, and cloud formation.

Scott Rutterbush, Laboratory Associate, MTU Dept. of Physics
Location: B024 Fisher Hall basement

3. U.S. Coast Guard – Water Safety & Careers
The local Coast Guard station in Dollar Bay is responsible for keeping boaters safe on Lake Superior and connecting waterways which includes performing rescues when needed—in all seasons and in all weather. Ask them what they like about their job and what it takes to become a “coastie.”

US Coast Guard officers
Location: GLRC Docks

MORNING -ONLY Sessions

4. Climate Change and the Great Lakes: How is climate change expected to affect the Great Lakes region and what does this mean for water levels and shorelines? Learn more about future projections and what communities are doing to plan for changes.

Kristen Schmidt
Northern Institute for Applied Carbon Science
Location: Geowall ground floor

5. Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs)
Find out how this high school student group designs their own remotely-operated vehicles and uses them to train Isle Royale National Park rangers to monitor underwater aquatic invasive species, especially the zebra mussel.

Dollar Bay High School SOAR (“Student Organization of Aquatic Robotics”)
Location: GLRC Boathouse

6. Natural Selection: A Simulation
Natural selection is a fundamental concept of life sciences. Students will observe how populations change through natural selection by tracking changes in a population over time through a simple hands on simulation.

Tony Matthys, PhD student, MTU Dept of Civil & Environmental Engineering
Location: 707 Dow

7. Low Impact Development
What can we do to reduce runoff after heavy rainfall or rapid snowmelt to prevent erosion and polluted runoff from reaching streams, rivers, and lakes? Visit a green roof to see how they reduce runoff and help recharge groundwater.

Jennie Tyrrell, PhD student, MTU Department Civil Engineering-Water Resources
Location: GLRC entry

8. GUPPIE the Underwater Explorer
Students will learn about underwater gliders, the simple physics behind the vehicles’ locomotion, and their applications. GUPPIE will be presented in action to the students and the role of its components will be explained. Students will build their own micro underwater gliders.

Dr. Nina Mahmoudian, and students: Donna Fard, Bingxi Li, Barzin Moridian
MTU Dept of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
Location: 300 R. L. Smith (MEEM) Bldg – Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Lab

9. Leave No Trace
Students will engage in activities that illustrate some of the Leave No Trace principles —plan ahead, travel and camp on durable surfaces, leave what you find, dispose of waste properly, respect wildlife, minimize campfire impacts and be considerate of other visitors.

Nathan Miller, Keweenaw Land Trust
Location: 1st floor GLRC by windows

10. The Big Green Monster: Emerald Ash Borer and the Water Cycle
How can a tiny green bug alter the water cycle of an entire forest?

Nick Bolton, MTU graduate student
Location: 202 GLRC by windows

11. River of Words
Let the theme of water and watersheds inspire you and pour out your heart like a river to share the special relationship we all have with water in all its many forms.

Evie Johnson, Senior Lecturer Michigan Tech University, Coordinator of English Education
Liz Fujita, Coordinator, Center for Pre-College Outreach
Location: 504 ME-EM (R. L. Smith Bldg.)

12. Remote Sensing
Examine some of the beautiful and interesting images collected by NASA’s satellites. Look over the images carefully to determine what the images are actually showing or what we could learn from them.

Brice Grunert, MTU graduate student
Location: 202 GLRC by windows

AFTERNOON-ONLY Sessions (Noon-2:50 PM)

13. Kite Aerial Photography Across the Keweenaw
Ever wonder what the Keweenaw’s vast water resources look like from a bird’s eye view? Kite aerial photographer Nathan “Invincible” Miller will show you how he takes unique photos of our landscape and shares fun stories from his kite flying adventures.

Nathaniel Miller, Project Manager, Keweenaw Land Trust
Location: Geowall – GLRC

14. Water Cycles and Human Impacts
Investigate the water cycle and the human connections and impacts upon the land in this lively Water Pictionary based activity. Come prepared to jump right in and then generate solutions.

Joe Panci, Environmental Education Coordinator, Ottawa National Forest
Location: 201 GLRC

15. Home Energy Efficiency
Find out ways to save on home energy use and how to use a Kill-o-watt meter to measure the electricity use of various appliances. Gain some great skills working on one of HEET’s home weatherization teams.

Melissa Davis, New Power Tour and the Houghton Energy Efficiency Team (HEET)
Location: 202 GLRC

2015 Green Lecture Series presents: ENERGY EFFICIENCY IN YOUR HOME – What Can YOU Do?

oct15s2015 Green Lecture Series presents:

ENERGY EFFICIENCY IN YOUR HOME – What Can YOU Do? 

By Yvonne Lewis, energy auditor /contractor with CLEAR RESULT, Lansing

Date & Time: Thursday, Oct. 15, 7:00-8:30 pm

Location: G002 Hesterberg Hall, Forestry Building, Michigan Tech

Cost: FREE Enjoy coffee, tea & refreshments

 See the Flyer: EnergyEfficiencyoct15-15pdf

Find out some low to NO-cost ways to reduce home energy use:

 How to define your thermal boundary,

 About furnace filters and how they affect heating comfort and cost,

 How “phantom” items are using power even when not in use,

 How air infiltration into your home quickly removes heat,

 Hands-on demonstrations for DIY caulking, faucet aerators, filter sizing and

changing, dry venting, and fireplace chimney work

 Take home a checklist to inspect your own home

 Sign up for a FREE energy assessment of your home.

 

Cosponsored by:

Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative

Michigan Tech Center for Water & Society

Keweenaw Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

Keweenaw Land Trust

2015 Green Lecture Series presents:

image77071-scol2015 Green Lecture Series presents: Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative: Working to create a renewable and sustainable future

The Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative: Working to create a renewable and sustainable future
By Terry Sharik, Dean, and Mark Rudnicki, Professor of Practice, MTU School of Forest Resources & Environmental Science

Date & Time: Thursday, Oct. 1st, 7:00-8:30 pm
Location: G002 Hesterberg Hall, Forestry Building, Michigan Tech
Cost: FREE Enjoy coffee, tea & refreshments

About the Presentation:

image118416-scolA sustainable future will not be based on non-renewable resources. Wise production, use and recycling of forest biomaterials−any organic materials extracted from forest ecosystems, such as wood, mushrooms, edible berries, and tree sap−needs to be a fundamental part of the answer.
Find out how the statewide Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative (MiFBI) is working to enhance quality of life in Michigan by fostering sustainable forests, communities, and economies through innovative and responsible production, use, and recycling of forest biomaterials. The Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative, spearheaded by Michigan Tech in 2013, has become a statewide effort comprised of over 300 forest stakeholders from across industry, academia, NGOs, and government.
The Initiative’s challenge is how to extract these biomaterials from forest ecosystems without compromising the integrity of the forest; how to process these materials to fully utilize the resource; how to market these materials regionally, nationally, and globally; and how to recycle these materials back through ecosystems. Trees are one of our most treasured and useful renewable natural resources, providing wood for our homes, furniture, and paper, and tree chemicals to produce rayon cloth, food, medicine, rubber, and so much more.
The scope of this effort is ambitious and its success depends on collaboration among individuals from many different government agencies, municipalities, institutions, academic disciplines, organizations, businesses and industries across Michigan who have a stake in Michigan’s forest biomaterials.

ForestBiomaterials imageCosponsored by:
Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative
Michigan Tech Center for Water & Society
Keweenaw Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Keweenaw Land Trust


Oct. 1 – Green Lecture: The Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative 

Biomaterial FLYER 09.11.15.

Biomaterial Engineering New Wood Uses Daily Mining Gazette article 09.08.15

Not Your Grandpas Woody Daily Mining Gazette article 09.09.15