Water clarity/quality project team

Our early work focused on water clarity as a measure of water quality and Secchi disk depth estimated from satellite imagery as the measure of clarity. Key team members during this period included:

Kali Sawaya, was a research fellow, with the Department of Forest Resources and Remote Sensing Laboratory, 1997-2008, and was the project manager of the NASA Upper Great Lakes Regional Earth Science Applications Center (RESAC), which developed remote sensing, geospatial tools, and technology transfer methods for satellite remote sensing activities tailored to the needs of resource agencies and management issues in the region. She was the lead author of one of our most cited papers, Extending satellite remote sensing to local scales: Land and water resource monitoring using high-resolution imagery, Remote Sense Environ., 2003, with 540 citations (October 2022).

Steve Kloiber was a graduate student in Environmental Engineering (Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering, Ph.D. 2003), who helped develop the initial protocols we used to map water clarity by satellite imagery. His dissertation focused on application of the developed methods to assessing water clarity trends in over 400 lakes of the seven-county Twin Cities Metropolitan Area, and he was the lead author on several of our key seminal papers (e.g., Kloiber et al., RSE, 2002, cited more than 400 times). Dr. Kloiber currently is the lake ecology supervisor for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Teresa Stadelmann was a graduate student in Environmental Engineering (M.S. 2001), who evaluated seasonal trends and variability in chlorophyll and Secchi depth as part of efforts to find an appropriate summer index period in which to measure water clarity in Minnesota lakes. This work was published (Stadelmann et al, Lake Reserv. Manage., 2001). A second paper on urban stormwater runoff from Stadelmann’s thesis has been cited more than 700 times. Stadelmann currently is a vice-president at the consulting firm H.R. Green in Cedar Rapids, IA.

Kevin Menken, graduate student in Water Resources Science (M.S. 2004), did early work in our group using hyperspectral reflectance spectroscopy to determine appropriate bands and band ratios for measurement of chlorophyll and CDOM and also to evaluate biases in satellite-inferred Secchi depth caused by high CDOM levels in lakes. One of the two papers derived from his thesis (Brezonik et al., Lake, Reserv. Manage. 2005) has been cited more than 300 times. Menken currently is a staff engineer at Barr Engineering in Minneapolis.