Observing systems consist of sensors that collect data, the platforms that host these sensors, and technology that sends the data to a data collection center, often with satellite telemetry. Observing systems come in all sizes, from global scale systems collecting information on climate down to a local system focused on a single estuary. In U.S. IOOS these different systems are nested together, and can be broadly defined at the global, national, and regional scale.
The National Glider Asset Map is a collaborative effort and initially includes all the current and historical glider missions dating back to 2005 from Southern California (SCCOOS), Northern Pacific (NANOOS), Central and Northern California (CeNCOOS) and Mid-Atlantic (MARACOOS).
Launch the Glider Asset Viewer and click on the asset symbols for additional information.
This viewer presents observing assets information that was submitted by the U.S. IOOS regions during 2011.
Launch the Asset Viewer and click on the asset symbols for information about the type of asset and its location, the variables it measures, the platform ID, and more.
The antenna of a High Frequency Radar
High frequency (HF) radar systems measure the speed and direction of ocean surface currents in near real time. These radars can measure currents over a large region of the coastal ocean, from a few kilometers offshore up to 200 km, and can operate under any weather conditions. They are located near the water’s edge, and need not be situated atop a high point of land. High frequency radars are unique in their ability to measure surface currents in large areas at once with the detail required for important ecological, economic, and safety applications.
Get further details on High Frequency Radar
Gliders, unmanned underwater robots, monitor water currents, temperature, and conditions that reveal effects from storms, impacts on fisheries, and the quality of our water. This information creates a more complete picture of what is happening in the ocean, as well as trends scientists might be able to detect. The robots collect information from deep water, as well as at the surface, at lower cost and less risk than ever before. As scientists deploy more gliders, they are revolutionizing how we observe our ocean. This robot propels us closer to that revolution.
Read more about the Glider Fleet
Scientists tag elephant seals, like the ones seen here on Ano Nuevo Island in Calif., to collect critical ocean data. IOOS will help standardize data from various efforts so scientists can apply them more broadly.
Scientists tag elephant seals, like the ones seen here on Año Nuevo Island in California, to collect ocean data. IOOS will help standardize the data collected from various efforts so scientists can apply them more broadly.
For the first time, data from electronic tags attached to marine animals will be incorporated into U.S. IOOS. In March 2011, scientists from IOOS and other federal, state, and academic institutions met in Santa Cruz, Calif., to establish a framework for integrating biological observations into IOOS. Collection of biological data is expected to begin in the fall of 2011.
The addition of biological data into a national system will allow easier access to this information for all scientists. Improved access can result in further advancements to the models and forecasts that rely on those data. Specifically, the addition of this data to IOOS will foster improved short-term marine and weather forecasts, as well as long-term climate predictions. This data will help scientists better understand how marine animals move with the flow of tides and currents and how climate change is altering their migration patterns.
The National Operational Wave Observation Plan, an interagency effort, defines a comprehensive wave observing network for the United States. At the core of the plan is an inventory and assessment of existing assets and community requirements followed by a gaps analysis.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Data Buoy Center (NDBC), a part of the National Weather Service, designs, develops, operates, and maintains a network of data collecting buoys and coastal stations. NDBC provides hourly observations from a network of about 90 buoys and 60 Coastal Marine Automated Network (C-MAN) stations. NDBC also serves as a data assembly center for receiving, quality controlling, and disseminating measurement data from other stations owned and maintained by non-federal regional ocean observing systems, members of the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS).
The Coastal Data Information Program (CDIP), is an extensive network for monitoring waves and beaches along the coastlines of the United States. The program has produced a vast database of publicly-accessible environmental data for use by coastal engineers and planners, scientists, mariners, and marine enthusiasts.
CDIP is operated by the Ocean Engineering Research Group at Scripps Institution of Oceanography with support from the US Army Corps of Engineers and the California Department of Boating and Waterways.
Collecting Ocean Data with Marine Mammals.Scientists are enlisting marine mammals with electronic tags to collect ocean data from around the nation. U.S. IOOS is working to standardize data collected from various tagging programs so researchers can better tap into this data stream.