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Title:Currents and pollutant dispersion in Lake Michigan, modeled with emphasis on the Calumet Region
Author(s):Katz, Philip L.; Schwab, Gary M.
Contributor(s):University of Illinois at Chicago Circle
Subject(s):Water resource development--Illinois
Water resource development
Water quality
Computer model
Water circulation
Water pollution
Lake currents
Lake Michigan
Calumet Region
Geographic Coverage:Illinois (state)
Abstract:This report summarizes several years of Lake Michigan modeling efforts, with emphasis on recent, previously unpublished results and their implications for the preservation and improvement of nearshore water quality. These efforts, including the development of practical techniques for simulating large-scale circulation and dispersion, have illuminated some remaining technical problems and suggested ways for effectively modeling highly polluted regions like the Chicago-Calumet Harbor shoreline. The use of hydrodynamic models in Great Lakes water-quality applications is briefly discussed, with special emphasis on pollutant-transport models and their use in studies of the fate of effluents discharged near shore in areas such as Calumet Harbor. Previously reported Illinois-WRC-funded lake modeling efforts at UICC are reviewed. Computer graphics capabilities developed for effectively displaying model results and observations are described. An adaptation of the Simons three-dimensional current model for Lake Michigan pollutant-dispersion studies is presented; the original model was verified extensively for Lake Ontario during the IFYGL effort. Typical results from the Lake Michigan version are presented to demonstrate its excellent capabilities for treating a wide range of large-scale phenomena. A rationale is developed for the use of local episode simulations as a means of overcoming some difficulties in obtaining sufficient data for calibration and verification of whole-lake models. Then, following short descriptions of the Calumet Harbor region of Lake Michigan as a pollutant source and of the Chicago Department of Water and Sewers intake water quality data for the Chicago shoreline, an application of a simple model to some observed "bad-water" episodes is presented. Comparison of observations and model results suggests that the onset of some periods of extreme pollution is governed by wind-driven transport. Such comparison also indicates that, under southerly wind conditions, high pollutant levels are often observed at the 68th St. Crib within 20-40 hours following a heavy rain at Calumet Harbor. The limitations of using a purely hydrodynamic model to treat bioreactive contaminants are shown, and improvements in resolution required in future, more accurate episode models are estimated. The use of models in analyzing complicated bad-water episodes is briefly investigated. A number of conclusions are drawn regarding the directions in which future nearshore research efforts might profitably proceed.
Issue Date:1976-03
Publisher:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Water Resources Center
Genre:Report (Grant or Annual)
Sponsor:U.S. Department of the Interior
U.S. Geological Survey
Rights Information:Copyright 1976 held by Philip L. Katz, Gary M. Schwab
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-06-29

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