Multibeam bathymetric data collected in the vicinity of Buffalo Reef, Michigan, within Lake Superior during USGS Field Activity 2018-043-FA using a dual-head Reson T20-P multibeam echosounder (32-bit GeoTIFF, UTM Zone 16N, NAD 83, NAVD 88 Vertical Datum, 2-m resolution)

Metadata Updated: November 12, 2020

In September 2018, the U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, conducted high-resolution geophysical mapping and sediment sampling to determine the distribution of historical mine tailings on the floor of Lake Superior. Large amounts of waste material from copper mining, locally known as “stamp sands,” were dumped into the lake in the early 20th century, with wide-reaching consequences that have continued into the present. Mapping was focused offshore of the town of Gay on the Keweenaw Peninsula of Michigan, where ongoing erosion and re-deposition of the stamp sands has buried miles of native, white-sand beaches. Stamp sands are also encroaching onto Buffalo Reef, a large area of cobble/boulder substrate that supports productive fisheries in the lake. The objectives of this cooperative mapping project are to develop a framework for scientific research and provide baseline information required for management of resources within the coastal zone of northern Michigan. High-resolution bathymetry and backscatter data reveal the irregular topography of the shallow, cobble-covered Buffalo Reef and the relatively smooth surface of finer-grained sediment that covers adjacent, deeper parts of the lake floor. Previous research used numerous sediment samples to determine the general distribution of mine tailings on the lake floor in this area, but little information exists on the extent and thickness of the surficial deposits. The main priority of this project is to image the near-surface stratigraphy, specifically the thickness of surficial sand and mud that threaten to cover the reef, with seismic-reflection profiling systems. In addition to continuous coverage of bathymetric and backscatter data, this report includes a dense grid of closely spaced seismic profiles, which will guide efforts to mitigate the environmental impacts of the shifting stamp sands.

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License: No license information was provided. If this work was prepared by an officer or employee of the United States government as part of that person's official duties it is considered a U.S. Government Work.

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Metadata Date August 7, 2020
Metadata Created Date November 12, 2020
Metadata Updated Date November 12, 2020
Reference Date(s) March 18, 2020 (publication)
Frequency Of Update notPlanned

Metadata Source

Harvested from DOI Open Data

Graphic Preview

Thumbnail image of 2-m multibeam echosounder bathymetry data collected within Grand Traverse Bay, MI.

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Date August 7, 2020
Metadata Created Date November 12, 2020
Metadata Updated Date November 12, 2020
Reference Date(s) March 18, 2020 (publication)
Responsible Party U.S. Geological Survey (Point of Contact)
Contact Email
Access Constraints Use Constraints: Public domain data from the U.S. Government are freely re-distributable with proper metadata and source attribution. Please recognize the U.S. Geological Survey as the originator of the dataset. These data are not to be used for navigation., Access Constraints: none
Bbox East Long -88.122144
Bbox North Lat 47.224536
Bbox South Lat 47.144453
Bbox West Long -88.247070
Coupled Resource
Frequency Of Update notPlanned
Graphic Preview Description Thumbnail image of 2-m multibeam echosounder bathymetry data collected within Grand Traverse Bay, MI.
Graphic Preview File
Graphic Preview Type JPEG
Licence Neither the U.S. Government, the Department of the Interior, nor the USGS, nor any of their employees, contractors, or subcontractors, make any warranty, express or implied, nor assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, nor represent that its use would not infringe on privately owned rights. The act of distribution shall not constitute any such warranty, and no responsibility is assumed by the USGS in the use of these data or related materials. Although these data and associated metadata have been reviewed for accuracy and completeness and approved for release by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and have been processed successfully on a computer system at the USGS, no warranty expressed or implied is made regarding the display or utility of the data for other purposes, nor on all computer systems, nor shall the act of distribution constitute any such warranty. The USGS or the U.S. Government shall not be held liable for improper or incorrect use of the data described and/or contained herein. Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.
Metadata Language
Metadata Type geospatial
Progress completed
Spatial Data Service Type
Spatial Reference System
Spatial Harvester True
Temporal Extent Begin 2018-09-15
Temporal Extent End 2018-09-25

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