Meteotsunamis in the Laurentian Great Lakes
Characterization, Forecast, and Warning   
Meteotsunamis can pose a serious threat to the Great Lakes coast, owing to the lake’s characteristics that facilitate the formation of destructive meteotsunamis including frequent fast-moving storm fronts, resonance-promoting bathymetry, and harbors to finally amplify the wave. The most vivid historical meteotsunami on record in the Lake Michigan occurred in 1954,  when a squall line-induced wave struck Chicago in Lake Michigan. The coast was inundated up to 50 meters inland and unexpectedly swept many fishermen off of the Montrose Harbor piers, killing seven. While the threat of meteotsunamis in Lake Michigan has been recognized, to date no infrastructure for detecting and warning of a pending meteotsunami disaster is available. Recently the potential hot spots in Lake Michigan that can be threatened by meteotsunamis has been identified and characterized. Meteotsunamis have also observed in Lake Superior and Lake Erie. In collaboration researchers in Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory and Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, we are implementing an observation network system to better understand the occurrence of meterotsunamis. An operational meteotsunami forecasting and warning system is also being developed to keep residents safe and avoid dangerous events. Further efforts on meteotsunami research, education, outreach can be found in the following links:
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