The Eyes on the Ocean™ Bi-weekly is an informal way of keeping you up-to-date on US IOOS® activities.

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From the Director:

Hello IOOS Community,

Did you know that about 8 million metric tons (estimated average) of plastic waste enter the ocean every year? Marine debris harms wildlife, damages habitats, transports nonindigenous species, disrupts tourism and marine transportation, and may impact human health. Last week, in recognition of Earth Day, the National Ocean Service announced a new Zero Waste Initiative and will commit to waste-reducing practices in NOS’s daily activities and events. Here in the IOOS Office, we will work to reduce our waste footprint in support of this effort. We encourage the IOOS community to follow suit and also practice the five Rs of Zero Waste (Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rot). Learn how you can help reduce marine debris in the ocean and Great Lakes here:

Best wishes,

From the U.S. IOOS Office:

  • Welcome back Hassan!  For the past two years, Hassan Moustahfid has been on an extended detail with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (UN FAO) in Rome, Italy as a Senior Fishery Resources Officer.  In this post, he led several projects and programmes on deep sea fisheries, large marine ecosystems, status of fishery resources for FAO Major Fishing Areas, contributed to SOFIA 2018 and the Blue Growth Initiative, and co-led the development of the Blue Belt Initiative, a platform for action to promote the sustainability of fisheries and aquaculture in Africa. Now that he’s back at IOOS, he will add to our efforts to make many types of biological data openly available for science and applications.
  • Marking 20 Years of IOOS! We will celebrate 20 years of IOOS in conjunction with the upcoming OceanObs’19 meeting in September in Honolulu, HI. In preparation for this celebration, we want to hear your memories of IOOS.  Has IOOS helped you, were you a part of building the System, or do you have photos, videos, or documents of the last 20 years that you can share with us? Please contact us at to share your memories or ask for more details on how to share information.
  • IOOS Federal Advisory Committee Update: The Spring meeting of the IOOS Federal Advisory Committee will be held June 3-4, 2019 in Washington, D.C. Details will be made available to the public. For more information, contact Becca Derex,

Observation Subsystem and Sensor Technologies:

  • NOAA Water Initiative Observation Objective Team Workshop: Derrick participated in the NOAA Water Initiative Observation Objective team workshop to validate the observation requirements needed to support the new Integrated Water Forecasting Mission Service Area. Validated observation requirements are a necessary product for NOAA, primarily through the NOAA Observing System Council, to prioritize long term investments in observing systems. This workshop was notable because Integrated Water Forecasting more has water quality observing requirements to support IWF goals to model and predict the combined effects of land hydrology and coastal ocean processes on issues in the coastal zone like Harmful Algal Blooms.

  • Surface Current Mapping: (IOOS PO POC, Derrick Snowden,

    • No update.
  • Gliders (IOOS POC LCDR Benjamin LaCour,

    • Registration now open! 8th EGO Meeting & International Glider Workshop - May 21-23, 2019: The European (EGO) and US (UG2) autonomous underwater glider user groups are coming together to host the 8th EGO Meeting and International Glider Workshop at Rutgers University, New Jersey. The goal of the meeting is to strengthen international collaboration through community dialogue, exchanges of information, sharing of experiences, and development of best practices to support the glider community. This international meeting will offer a mix of presentations, panels, breakout groups, poster sessions, and open community dialog. It will provide a forum in which scientists, engineers, students and industry can exchange knowledge and experiences on the development of glider technology, the application of gliders in oceanographic research and the role of gliders in ocean observing systems. More info here: Please register by May 6th!

  • Animal Telemetry Network (ATN) (National Coordinator Bill Woodward,
    • Putting a Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Telemetry Network: The ATN partnered with the NMFS/Chesapeake Bay Office (CBO), MARACOOS and the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) to co-host the Mid-Atlantic Telemetry Workshop at the University of Delaware, April 18-19, 2019. Led by Dr. Matt Ogburn from SERC, the Workshop brought together 40 of the leading acoustic telemetry researchers in the Mid-Atlantic region to present their science activities and to learn about MATOS, the Mid-Atlantic Telemetry Observation System web-based data management tool developed  by RPS Group now being implemented cooperatively among SERC, ATN, CBO and MARACOOS. Keynote talks included, "A vision for regional telemetry and the Mid-Atlantic Acoustic Telemetry Observation System (MATOS)"- Matt Ogburn; "Lessons from the FACT (Florida Atlantic Cooperative Telemetry) Network" - Joy Young (Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute); and "The OTN and Regional Telemetry Networks" - Lenore Bajona (Canadian Ocean Tracking Network). The Workshop also included Instructions on how to apply the FACT/SECOORA developed metadata management and sharing tool called VEMBU as well as interactive discussion on a MATOS draft user agreement for data ownership and sharing.The Workshop signaled a major step towards strengthening the organization and value of our Mid-Atlantic  acoustic telemetry efforts.
    • ATN DAC Supports NMFS Science Centers: The ATN Data Assembly Center (DAC) Data Coordinator/Wrangler, Dr. Megan McKinzie, along with a team from Axiom Data Science, spent several days last week at the NMFS/AFSC/Marine Mammal Laboratory assisting researchers to register and create their own accounts in the ATN DAC where they will be able to upload, manage, analyze, visualize, share and archive data and provide the ability to discover data/projects from others. Joining the DAC affords opportunities for increased collaborations, minting DOIs (Digital Object Identifiers) and permanent archiving capabilities to meet PARR regulations as well as providing a place to direct funders and stakeholders to view projects in the data display Portal and the discoverable catalog.
    • ATN Asset Inventory Kicked Off: A primary goal of the ATN is the coordination and sustainability of the telemetry infrastructure in the U.S. and nearby areas. To be successful this requires knowledge of where the existing telemetry assets and science capabilities are located. Megan Treml, under contract to the ATN through SECOORA, kicked off the inventory this week by sending google doc survey questionnaires to 200+ satellite telemetry researchers.This will be followed up next week by sending additional questionnaires to 300+ acoustic telemetry researchers. The survey information will inform the ATN web-based Asset Inventory Tool, a map with pop-up boxes that will contain most of the information from the questionnaire.The primary audiences for this information are the ATN funding agencies, the ATN Steering Group (9 federal agencies and 4 non-federal organizations), and the telemetry research community.
    • The ATN at ONR Marine Mammal Program Review: Bill gave an ATN talk and presented a poster at last week's ONR Marine Mammal Program Annual Review. Because the ATN works strongly with and is funded by this ONR Program, this Review provided a great opportunity to interact with many of the researchers at the review who support and participate in the ATN.
    • May 6-7, 2019 NERACOOS ATN-MBON-OTN Workshop: The workshop will be held at the Univ. of New Hampshire May 6-7, 2019. So far, 13 of ~25 speakers have been confirmed for the meeting. For more information and to register, please go to Please contact Jackie or Bill for more info:,

Data Management and Communications (DMAC) Subsystem and Tools Built on IOOS data (DMAC listserv – contact Micah Wengren, DMAC System Architect,

  • QARTOD (National Coordinator Mark Bushnell,
    • Currents Manual Update: The QARTOD Manual for Real-Time Quality Control of In-Situ Current Observations was among our earliest manuals to be created. The first draft was created while QARTOD was still a grassroots organization. It became a U.S. IOOS manual in 2013, was updated in 2015, and now it’s time to update it again. We continue to improve QARTOD manuals by adding important definitions, clarifying statements, and including lessons learned from those implementing the QC tests. At the same time, instrument technology, data telemetry, and data processing have all advanced as well. To ensure manuals remain accurate and relevant, updates are an important component of the QARTOD project. We envision an incremental update (no change to test implementation) rather than a substantial update (which would only be conducted in response to a community request). We invite everyone to review the existing manual and suggest changes. We’re always seeking examples of questionable or bad data to demonstrate the capabilities of the QC tests. All comments are logged to an adjudication matrix to ensure a recorded response.
    • Ocean Best Practice System Update: At the recent IOC Committee on International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) meeting in Tokyo, a recommendation to IOC to establish the IOC Ocean Best Practices System project was approved. This will be a joint project of IODE and GOOS, and the next step is a review by the GOOS Steering Committee. Contact for more information.

Modeling and Analysis Subsystem (IOOS PO and IOOS Coastal and Ocean Modeling Testbed (COMT) POC – Derrick Snowden,

  • Coastal Coupling Community of Practice: Between May 7-10 approximately 60 scientists and managers will convene at the National Water Center in Tuscaloosa, AL to launch the Coastal Coupling Community of Practice.  The CoP will focus on strengthening the collaboration between federal (NOAA, USG, EPA) and non-federal (University and private sector) scientists who are working toward Integrated Water Forecasting in the coastal zone. The CoP is a major part of the NOS/NWS collaboration under the NOAA Water Initiative. IOOS will be represented by COMT PIs from three newly funded projects focus on coupling the National Water Model with coastal ocean circulation models. In addition to the IOOS PIs, NOS has supported the Coastal Coupling CoP by hiring 3 NOS employees from CO-OPS and the Office for Coastal Management who are embedded at the NWC and who are charged with bringing NOS experience in coastal management, community outreach, and coastal modeling to the Water Center team.

  • NOAA Leadership receives vision paper for the Earth Prediction Innovation Center (EPIC):  EPIC was recently included in the National Integrated Drought Information System Reauthorization Act of 2018.  NOAA Leadership assembled a group of NOAA modelers and program managers to craft a vision for EPIC and initiate planning for implementation. Derrick represented NOS/IOOS at the workshop and in subsequent writing teams. This Vision paper is currently being circulated among line office leadership in hopes of gaining support for the new endeavor.  Important elements of EPIC include a commitment to open community development of the next generation of weather and earth system models combined with a flexible approach to using alternative non-NOAA computing platforms like the commercial cloud.
  • COMT Annual Meeting: The COMT Annual Meeting is being scheduled for late October. The final dates will be announced soon.

Interagency and International Collaboration/News:

  • Federal Funding Opportunity: NOAA OER Soliciting Ocean Exploration Proposals: The NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research (OER) is soliciting ocean exploration proposals to address knowledge gaps and support growth in the Nation's Blue Economy and/or to contribute to Seabed 2030 goals. The deadline for the pre-proposal submission is May 24, 2019. The FFO announcement may also be found online at: Questions may be directed to Proposals are being requested on the following three topics:

    • 1. OCEAN EXPLORATION. Ocean exploration to inform management, sustainable use, and conservation of marine resources in poorly explored deep ocean areas of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone. Areas proposed for exploration and/or initial characterization must be at a minimum depth of 200 meters.

    • 2. MARINE ARCHAEOLOGY. Discovery and characterization of underwater cultural heritage representing past marine-based economic activities or early human occupation to inform decisions on preservation and seabed use, and to identify sources of potential environmental impacts. Marine archaeology proposals can be conducted in any water depth.

    • 3. TECHNOLOGY. Application of new or novel use of existing ocean technologies or innovative methods that increase the scope and efficiency of acquiring ocean exploration data and improve the usability of and access to ocean exploration data. Proposed technologies must be applicable to water depths of 200 meters or greater, though testing in shallower water or lab-based test facilities will be supported.

  • 2019 NOAA Emerging Technologies Workshop: NOAA will hold its third Emerging Technologies Workshop on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 25-26 at the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction (NCWCP) in College Park, Maryland. Registration is now open and free, but on a first come, first serve basis. Click here to register now and learn more about this year’s workshop, focusing on the Blue Economy and Resilience to Extreme Weather and Water. Sponsored by the NOAA Observing Systems Council, NOAA Ocean and Coastal Council, NOAA Research Council, and the Weather Water and Climate Board, NOAA’s 2019 Emerging Technologies Workshop is a public showcase for innovative technologies designed to optimize NOAA’s observing capabilities and data synthesis. The workshop engages presenters from within NOAA as well as external researchers, analysts, and practitioners representing academia, private businesses, and other government agencies with technologies that have the potential to expand NOAA’s ability to observe the environment, improve efficiency, or reduce costs. Like previous workshops, this year’s event will focus on new and evolving technologies that are already being explored by users in NOAA, and in development by our partners and by industry. The report from the most recent workshop can be found here. We invite you to join us for this exciting opportunity to learn more about the emerging technologies that could be used to make NOAA’s observation enterprise more agile, effective, and efficient.

  • NGS Releases Interactive Data Map for GEOID18: In March, NGS released the beta version of GEOID18 for public review and comment. GEOID18 will replace GEOID12B, and deliver improved GPS-derived NAVD 88 orthometric heights. GEOID18 will serve as the means for obtaining NAVD 88 heights via GPS, and will be the last hybrid geoid model NGS will create before the North American-Pacific Geopotential Datum of 2022 (NAPGD2022) replaces NAVD 88. The new interactive map displays the differences between the GEOID18 model and GEOID12B, shows areas where data gaps were filled, provides a new error estimation layer, and provides information about each of the marks that were used to create the model. NGS encourages users to explore their areas of interest on the map and send questions or comments to For more information, contact

  • NGS Prepares Surveying Community for Important Changes Coming in 2022: Michael Dennis gave a presentation on eliminating the U.S. Survey Foot for products and services in the modernized 2022 National Spatial Reference System of 2022 (NSRS2022) at the Board of Directors meeting for the National Society of Professional Surveyors in Arlington, VA. Almost all of the representatives in attendance from more than 40 states were in agreement with Michael's proposal. Since 1959, the United States has used two types of feet, the “international foot” and the “U.S. survey foot.” The two units of measurement differ by only 0.01 foot per mile, but having both in use has resulted in decades of confusion in surveying and mapping, where computing accurate coordinates over large distances are commonly required. This April 25 webinar, “Fate of the U.S. Survey Foot After 2022: A Conversation with NGS,” discusses the history of the foot, the importance of standards, and shows how NGS can help move the United States to a single foot definition in 2022. NGS, in partnership with The COMET Program, has also developed a short video on this topic. For more information, contact

Delivering the Benefits:

  • MARACOOS Named NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador: The National Weather Service has designated the Mid-Atlantic Regional Association Coastal Ocean Observing System (MARACOOS) as a NOAA Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador. This designation recognizes MARACOOS' role in supporting communities--through MARACOOS' provision of data and information products--to be prepared for and be more resilient in the face of extreme weather events.  The MARACOOS role includes our relationships with the National Weather Service and other NWS partners who provide data products to communities and decision makers.  The work of all MARACOOS partners is an important part of this designation and we thank you for your ongoing work! Additional information on the NOAA Weather-Ready Nation program can be found here:
  • New GOA-ON Website: NANOOS and NOAA PMEL worked together on an upgrade to the Global Ocean Acidification Observing Network (GOA-ON) website.  Please check it out at  Kudos to Troy Tanner (NANOOS) and Cathy Cosca (NOAA PMEL) for this great collaboration, and it has been my pleasure to be actively involved.
  • Rincon Wave Buoy Back in Service in CARICOOS: A wave buoy located near Rincon in northwest Puerto Rico has been successfully redeployed and is back online and reporting data.  The buoy went adrift during the peak of Hurricane Maria, was recovered by NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson, refurbished by CDIP, and redeployed by CARICOOS on February 8.  Click here for current data:


  • House Natural Resources Committee Hearing - May 8: House Natural Resources Committee Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife is planning a legislative hearing on several oceans-related bills on May 8. AOOS Director Molly McCammon will testify on HR 1314, Reauthorization of the ICOOS Act. RDML Gallaudet has been invited to witness.


  • GCOOS accepting applications for the first Howard Scholarship Award: The awardee will receive registration and travel support (a maximum of $1,500) to give an ocean data-related presentation at either the American Geophysical Union Meeting or 2020 Ocean Sciences Meeting. Applicants must be from a GCOOS-member institution and be pursuing undergraduate, graduate or post-doctoral work that includes a strong element of collaboration. Learn more & get an application:

  • Workshop: Data Access for the Southeast US Coasts and Oceans: Join SECOORA on June 20 in Morehead City, NC for a free hands-on workshop. Participants will use the integrated Jupyter Notebooks to create reproducible workflows for analyzing a simple dataset from the SECOORA data portal to create publication-ready plots. Learn more and reserve your spot.

  • NANOOS at GOA-ON Workshop: NANOOS Director Jan Newton recently returned from Hangzhou China where the Global Ocean Acidification Observing Network (GOA-ON) held its 4th International Workshop.  She served as a workshop co-chair and, working with NOAA's OAP and other entities, the conference attracted over 250 participants from over 60 nations. A hallmark of GOA-ON is its capacity building efforts. The energy was high re: the importance of observations and modeling on OA status and response, including on local scales globally. NANOOS-developed technology supports the GOA-ON portal and website.

  • IOOS Enterprise in the News

Upcoming Meetings with IOOS Participation:

  • NERACOOS ATN-MBON-OTN Workshop, 6-7 May 2019, Durham, NH: For more information and to register, please go to

  • MARACOOS Annual Meeting May 14th, Annapolis, MD: For more details and registration, click here.  

  • 8th EGO Meeting & International Glider Workshop, 21-23 May 2019, New Brunswick, NJ: The European (EGO) and US (UG2) autonomous underwater glider user groups are coming together to host the 8th EGO Meeting and International Glider Workshop at Rutgers University, New Jersey. Learn more here: 

  • Save the Date! NASA Biodiversity and Ecological Forecasting Team Meeting, 21–23 May 2019: The meeting will be held in the DC area, May 21-23, 2019. 

  • Save the Date! Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) All Hands Meeting, 24 May 2019: The meeting will beheld in the DC area, May 24, 2019. 

  • IOSTIA’s BlueTech Expo, 4–5 June 2019, Washington, DC: IOSTIA and Sea Technology Magazine will host an expanded BlueTech Expo in Washington, D.C. on June 4-5, 2019. Organized to coincide with Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW), this year's program will feature a one-day interactive technical program focused on new developments, innovative practices, regulatory & funding issues, and case studies of interest to both government and industry. Followed by a day of exhibits featuring industry’s leading providers and a special networking reception hosted by Oceanology International. For more information: 

  • Save the Date! SECOORA 2019 Annual Meeting, 18–20 June 2019, Wilmington, NC: Please save the date for the SECOORA's 2019 Annual Meeting in Wilmington, NC. Participate in the ocean observing conversation and network with coastal ocean scientists from around the Southeast. Link:  

  • NANOOS Annual Meeting, August 2019, Vancouver, WA: Details forthcoming. 

  • OceanObs’19, 16–20 September 2019, Honolulu, HI: The OceanObs19 conference planning is well underway! The conference will take place September 16-20 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  Check out the conference website for more details:


Other Upcoming Meetings:

  • OceanPredict '19, 6–10 May 2019, Halifax, Canada: Registration for OceanPredict ’19 is open.  Click here for details on registration fees, and to register for this important gathering of the world’s leading ocean scientists, ocean observation specialists, industry representatives, service providers and users of ocean data & products from across the local, national & international operational oceanography community. GODAE OceanView continues to provide coordination and leadership in consolidating and improving global and regional ocean analysis and forecasting systems. Further information about the symposium, themes and description of sessions is now available from the OceanPredict ’19 website:

  • Coastal Sediments 2019 (CS19), 27–31 May 2019 - Tampa, FL: Coastal Sediments 2019 (CS19) is the 9th Conference in the Coastal Sediments Series. CS19 will be held in Tampa/St. Petersburg, FL, with the theme of "Advancing Science & Engineering for Resilient Coastal Systems." Oral and poster presentations and accompanying papers will be selected from abstracts submitted on a variety of topics including special sessions.

  • Capitol Hill Ocean Week, 4–6 June 2019, Washington, DC: Join the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation and visionaries in ocean and Great Lakes policy and conservation for two days of plenaries, panels, and networking.  Learn more and register here:

  • First International Operational Satellite Oceanography Symposium, 18–19 June 2019, Washington, DC: The First Operational Satellite Oceanography Symposium will take place from 18 to 19 June 2019 in the Washington, DC area. The symposium aims to enable the understanding the barriers (perceived or actual) and facilitate the widespread incorporation of satellite ocean observations into the value chain from data to useful information across the range of operational applications. In this symposium, an international community of satellite operators, information producers and users will exchange facts and ideas to 1) understand user needs and expectations, and 2) develop interoperability standards and establish best practices that will lead to more universal use of ocean satellite data. For further information see the meeting website for announcement flyer and return again later for further details: Email:

  • 2019 NOAA Environmental Data Management Workshop, September 4-5, 2019 Seattle, WA: The NOAA Environmental Data Management Committee (EDMC) is pleased to announce the 9th annual NOAA Environmental Data Management Workshop (EDMW) that will be held September 4-5, 2019 in Seattle, WA. The theme for this year’s workshop is “Unleashing NOAA's Data as a Strategic Asset for Science, Service, Stewardship and Innovation.” The workshop will be hosted at the Motif Hotel in downtown Seattle. Please forward this announcement to NOAA colleagues that may be interested in attending or presenting. The 2019 NOAA EDM Workshop will include presentations and working sessions that focus on efforts to improve the collection, stewardship, interpretation, and delivery of NOAA data that enable the agency to carry out its mission and programs effectively. Attendees are primarily NOAA personnel, but we expect to have a few slots for external people. The formal approval process including the NOAA Group Travel Request will begin soon, as will other workshop planning activities including calls for sessions, papers, and registration. To receive future announcements on the 2019 EDM Workshop, please sign up for the 2019 EDMW Mailing List.

  • Save the Date! Pecora 21 & ISRSE 38, October 2019, Baltimore, MD: A joint symposium of the 21st William T. Pecora Memorial Remote Sensing Symposium and the 38th International Symposium on Remote Sensing of Environment will convene in Baltimore, Maryland, USA from October 6 – 11, 2019. The organizers have released a call for special sessions and are inviting proposals for sessions that deal with issues and advances in the broader field of Earth observation.


Job & Internship Opportunities:

  • Research Specialist, Texas A&M: The Research Specialist will serve as a Data Scientist in the Coastal and Marine Geospatial Lab of the Harte Research Institute and will assist in the development of statistical models and programming modules to discover insights in coastal and oceanographic data through the use of statistical modeling, visualization techniques, and data mining algorithms.  This person will design, develop, test, deploy, and document software packages and interactive user interfaces deployed via the Internet. Read more and apply here.

Click here to view the IOOS Association Calendar

Do you have suggestions for new things you would like to see in the Eyes on the Ocean IOOS Bi-Weekly? Talk to us:!

Click here to view the IOOS Association Calendar

Do you have suggestions for new things you would like to see in the Eyes on the Ocean IOOS Bi-Weekly? Talk to us:!