GeoCarta Has Moved

Jan 17, 2007

Map of Great Salt Lake Completed

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has completed the second of two maps defining the bottom surface of Great Salt Lake, Utah. According to the agency, these maps are the first detailed, systematic surveys of the lake.

The mapping project was first begun back in 2002 and completed last year. Advanced technology was used in the effort, including a high-definition fathometer, real-time differential global positioning system, and depth-discrete sound-velocity corrections. A total about 12.8 million depth measurements were collected to define the the bathymetry of the lake.

According the USGS, these new maps will assist researchers in understanding the transport of salt and contaminants in the lake, the chemistry of the lake, the geologic history of the lake, and ecological implications of water depth and volume. Lake circulation modeling and other studies are already being done using the new maps.

The Great Salt Lake actually has two basins, separated by a low-lying ridge extending from Promontory Point southwest to Hat Island. This ridge has been submerged and consequently has not been shown in detail on any previous maps.

Maps of both the north and south basins have been posted online.

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