LACMRERS Mission and Goals
- LACMRERS serves three primary missions:
Collaborative River Research—Faculty, students, and researchers from many disciplines conduct research focusing on the study of the river, its watershed, and its tributaries. LACMRERS is designed and equipped for research and education relating to the Mississippi River and large river systems in general. The station also encourages the study of diverse and interacting aspects of river science and aquatic ecology.
- Classrooms on the Riverbank—Students and educators at all levels—from elementary school to the graduate level—use the resources at LACMRERS to learn more about the Upper Mississippi River. LACMRERS provides classroom teaching space a few steps from the river’s edge, allowing students to interact easily with one of Earth’s major river systems. Real-world contact with the river, its flows, and its organisms promotes the hands-on teaching of “integrated water science” up close and personal. On-site classes in Water Quality have been taught here since 2009. Students also help design and implement field research projects, gaining valuable hands-on experience.
- Collaboration and Outreach—LACMRERS brings together people who share an interest in the river, offering a unique meeting place for representatives of schools, government agencies, environmental organizations, communities, and more to share ideas and learn from each other and the river. Here, physical and biological scientists come together to examine the complicated problems of the Upper Mississippi. Hydraulic engineers and fluid mechanicians study the river’s flow with biologists, geologists, environmental engineers, and representatives of other disciplines, working toward practical solutions to daunting problems.
Problems and Solutions
LACMRERS’ well-equipped field laboratories encourage collaboration, and provide a central meeting place for representatives of education, government agencies, and nonprofits to meet. Researchers often collaborate with representatives from a variety of organizations, including:
- Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ Fairport Fish Hatchery
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
- U.S. Geologic Survey’s Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and
- The Nature Conservancy
By hosting and facilitating a range of activities, LACMRERS expands the understanding of how natural events and human activities impact the Mississippi River system long-term. LACMRERS was designed to:
- Provide regional educational, industrial, and governmental entities with opportunities to develop and conduct field-based programs, short courses, and workshops
- Provide a venue and state-of-the-art facilities for multidisciplinary instruction, training, and research on large-river ecosystems
- Establish partnerships with government, industry, universities, and private organizations to enhance understanding of large-river
- Coordinate river-monitoring activities for the Upper Mississippi River and facilitate the public dissemination of river data
- Apply IIHR’s established strengths and expertise in hydraulics, computational fluid dynamics, and remote-sensing to foster a greater understanding of aquatic ecology and to partner with researchers in agriculture, fisheries, ecology, urban and regional planning, and other disciplines.