Satellite derived primary productivity estimates for Lake Michigan

Document Type

Conference Paper/Presentation

Publication Date



A new MODIS based satellite algorithm to estimate Primary Productivity (PP) has been generated and evaluated for Lake Michigan. The Great Lakes Primary Productivity Model (GLPPM) is based on the work of Morel and first utilizes the CPA algorithm developed by Pozdnyakov et al. to obtain an accurate chlorophyll (chl) satellite based retrieval value for Lake Michigan. The new algorithm then utilizes this chl estimate combined with water temperature, Kd, solar illumination, and carbon fixation rates to generate the primary productivity estimate. Comparisons of the satellite derived PP estimates to in situ measurements made by NOAAGLERL show for spring and fall dates when there is no stratification the estimates are within 10%. The new algorithm can be easily adapted to work on all the Great lakes and therefore can be used to generate time series dating back to late 1997 (launch of SeaWifs). These time series can significantly contribute to improved assessment of Great Lakes primary productivity changes as a result of biological events, such as dreissenid mussel invasions, recent climatic variations and potential future climate change.

Publisher's Statement

© 2012 The authors.

Publication Title

IAGLR 55th Annual Conference on Great Lakes Research