By Jessie Forand/ECHO  On Wednesday, April 15, John Erbland, Hydrologic Technician with the USGS South Carolina Water Science Center, ...

USGS Research Project Comes to ECHO

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By Jessie Forand/ECHO 

On Wednesday, April 15, John Erbland, Hydrologic Technician with the USGS South Carolina Water Science Center, sat in the springtime sun just outside ECHO’s doors.

For 12 hours, he was perched, participating in a research project underway by a hydrologist at the agency’s Montpelier office.

Data collecting equipment (Carrie Ladd/ECHO)

From Whitehall, New York, to Burlington and Canada, seven points along the lake were simultaneously being used to collect data from USGS Lake Gauge, like the one located outside of ECHO, record real-time water and air temperatures, lake level, and wind speed data for Lake Champlain.

These nifty sensors are constantly sending and receiving data, Erbland said, and every 30 seconds they take an average of the data levels from 10-17 satellites, helping to create a strong triangulation for the most accurate information.

The USGS Lake Gauge at ECHO (Jessie Forand/ECHO)

Erbland said the project will help develop a flow model for all points where gauges are located. For the research, he was to be on-site from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Wednesday then for 6 hours Thursday, to check for redundancies.

Coming new to the sensor thanks to this study is a permanent marker, inserted right into ECHO’s deck, to allow for future tracking, too. All the agency will have to do is set its equipment up at the marker’s site and go!


To learn more about the USGS Lake Gauge visit ECHO or check out the USGS website


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