Buoy in Grand Traverse BayIt’s All Connected

The network of observing systems around the Great Lakes region provides information about wind, waves, water temperature, water quality and more. Observing systems (e.g., sensors and buoys) are the primary means for gathering information — taking the pulse of the Great Lakes — on the chemical, biological and physical characteristics of the Great Lakes ecosystem. This information includes both real-time and historical data about the Great Lakes, St. Lawrence River and interconnecting waterways. This data is used in managing, safeguarding and understanding the Great Lakes. Resource managers, researchers, educators, commercial shippers, recreational boaters, beach users and others all use Great Lakes data and information.

Great Lakes Observing System

The Great Lakes Observing System (GLOS) is one of 11 regional associations that form the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System. The Integrated Ocean Observing System provides data about the oceans and Great Lakes from the global scale of ocean basins to local scales of coastal ecosystems. The Global Ocean Observing System provides data about our oceans as a single, contiguous, body of water that encircles the globe. The Great Lakes regional association, GLOS, supported the development of this website and teacher professional development efforts in the Great Lakes region. See: GLOS

Great Lakes Sea Grant Network

This website is part of the effort to facilitate greater understanding about and use of observing systems data. In collaboration with COSEE-Great Lakes, NOAA-GLERL and researchers at Eastern Michigan University, Michigan Sea Grant developed lessons and activities that focus on monitoring and observing the Great Lakes. See: Great Lakes Sea Grant Network


A surface water temperature data website, developed and maintained by Michigan Sea Grant and the Michigan State University Remote Sensing and GIS Research and Outreach Services. See: Coastwatch