The Great Lakes to Gulf Virtual Observatory
The Great Lakes to Gulf (GLTG℠) Virtual Observatory builds on technology developed for Great Lakes Monitoring to provide access to water resource information from the Mississippi River and featured watersheds in the basin. The observatory also provides water resource information for watersheds in Illinois where federal, state, and local governments have come together to achieve measureable success in improving water quality.
IISG, the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center (NGRREC℠) and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications joined together to develop the GLTG℠ Virtual Observatory.
The GLTG℠ virtual observatory aims to make available not just current science on nutrient and water quality issues, but also strategies to address these issues. Through visualizing water quality monitoring and land use data across sources and agencies in a user friendly interface, the virtual observatory seeks to track progress in attaining goals for water quality improvement set by federal and state agencies. GLTG℠ tools allows a user to create custom visualizations by choosing geographic layers, including political borders, watershed borders, landscape features, and water body outlines.
The publicly available virtual observatory includes historical and current information about water quality in rivers, including near real time data from the Great Rivers Ecological Observatory Network (GREON) buoys implemented by NGRREC. The GREON℠ buoys are collecting water data, including temperature, oxygen, conductivity, turbidity, chlorophyll-a, blue-green algae, and nitrates, plus weather. The GLTG℠ virtual observatory is intended for use by scientists, students, land managers, and policy makers in federal, state, and local institutions.