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Meet Great Lake Researcher Jay Austin

Dr. Jay Austin has been an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota Duluth’s Large Lakes Observatory and Department of Physics since 2005. New to the Great Lakes, his investigations into Lake Superior’s temperature trends with Steven Colman (Director, Large Lakes Observatory) caught national headlines when they revealed that the lake is warming more rapidly than the adjacent atmosphere.

Dr. Austin’s research interests span coastal physical oceanography and limnology. His Great Lakes work has focused on physical processes in Lake Superior and the long-term effects of climate change and ice cover. Dr. Austin is also interested in the ways wind circulates water, creating techniques for data collection and analysis, and extending science to different audiences. Two primary techniques drive his inquiries: direct observations, and computer simulations.

Current Projects

How Ice Cover Affects the Rapid Warming of Lake Superior

Launching the First Autonomous Underwater Glider in the Great Lakes

Measuring the Temporal Variability of CO2 Flux in Lake Superior

Adding a Carbon Cycling Submodel to a Circulation Model of Lake Superior

Developing Interactive Simulations of Lake Circulation for Classroom Use

Identifying the Conditions that Create a Sediment Plume and Understanding Cross-Shelf Transport in Western Lake Superior

The Interaction of Estuarine Circulation and Wind-Driven Shelf Circulation

Frontal Interactions Near Cape Hatteras (FINCH): The Role that Cross-Shelf Fronts have on Cross-Shelf transport