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Products & Services

GLERL carries out research and provides scientific products, expertise, and services required for effective management and protection of Great Lakes coastal ecosystems. GLERL has a fundamental responsibility to produce high-quality scientific information that addresses issues of importance to the nation regarding the wise use of the Great Lakes and marine coastal environments. The research is both proactive (to provide the basic understanding of how aquatic ecosystems work so that issues can be identified and solved before they become problems) and reactive (to respond to those issues deemed highly relevant to society). Scientific output must be readily available to those who need it.

Scientific Publications

GLERL research results are published in the form of scientific journals and technical reports. NOAA Technical Reports are scientific and technical papers that, because of their length or their large data sets, are not suitable for publication in scientific journals. This series includes NOAA Technical Reports, NOAA Technical Memorandums, and NOAA Data Reports. Most files are in PDF format with any associated data files, figures, and programs available from GLERL’s FTP site.

Scientific Posters

Poster presentations from scientific meetings, workshops, and conferences.

Brochures & Information Sheets

One to two page descriptions of a few of our current research projects and results. Written in plain-language and loaded with color and graphics, these are perfect for the non-scientist.

Photo Gallery

A collection of Great Lakes images. The gallery is organized into nine different categories: Facilities/Vessels, Fieldwork, Fish, Ice, Lake Levels, Logos, Maps, Scenic, and Waterlife. We will update and add to this site as more images become available.

Marine Instrumentation Laboratory

Technology development at GLERL encompasses both hardware and software development. The Marine Instrumentation Laboratory performs engineering research and development activities in support of GLERL projects, furthers the advancement of marine technology, and provides instrumentation maintenance and field support for GLERL scientific projects. The other component of technology development is project specific software development. Numerical models are used to predict water levels, the fate and transport of toxic substances, and fish recruitment, among others. Computer software developed at GLERL is also used as a research and management tool; to better understand certain processes and how best to manage resources.

GLERL Library

The GLERL Library supports the laboratory’s research activities and the collection reflects an emphasis on freshwater and coastal sciences, particularly in the Great Lakes basin. The GLERL library is open to the public for research purposes, Monday through Friday from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm.


GLERL research vessels include the R/V Laurentian, R/V Storm, and R/V Cyclops. These vessels are also available to select institutions conducting Great Lakes research.

Great Lakes Water Levels

Great Lakes water levels constitute one of the longest high quality hydrometeorological data sets in North America with reference gage records beginning about 1860 with sporadic records back to the early 1800s.

Web Cams & Meteorological Data

GLERL’s Marine Instrumentation Laboratory has deployed and is maintaining a real-time network of shore-based meteorological instrument packages in Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. Stations in Alpena, MI, Muskegon, MI, Chicago, IL, Milwaukee, WI, and Toledo, OH also include web cameras. All meteorological observation stations measure and record wind speed, wind gust, wind direction, air temperature, and wind chill. In addition, instruments in Muskegon measure dep point, relative humidity, atmospheric pressure, and light level. This data as well as camera images are updated at 5-30 minute intervals and displayed on GLERL’s web site.