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Lower St. Marys Water Level and Depth Analysis

Peter Yee;Aaron Thompson
Water level and flow data were examined to identify relationships between Lake Superior outflows and water levels in the lower St. Marys River, and how peaking and ponding operations affect these levels. Analysis showed the maximum effects of peaking and ponding operations on levels were immediately downstream of the power plants, with the effects dissipated towards Lake Huron. Backwater effects due to water level variations in the north end of Lake Huron from meteorological processes are almost always present, and large, though short-term variations can cause backwater effects as far upstream as Sault Ste. Marie. A parallel study utilized bathymetric data to confirm navigation channel depths below low water datum. Bathymetry from 2000 indicated depths of 8.69 m for most of the channel except at some shoals where depths were as little as 8.23 m. These shoals were removed during the 2003 dredging to provide depths of 8.69 - 9.14 m throughout the navigation channel.
Water Level Analysis of Lower St. Marys River
St. Marys River Navigation Depth Analysis
St. Marys Bathymetry Images
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Main Topics
Lake Superior Regulation
Questions We Asked
What are the limits of regulation?
Hydropower Evaluation