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

Email us to get it delivered to your inbox, and connect with us to keep up with the latest news!

From the Director:

NOAA is predicting a near-normal Atlantic Hurricane season this year with a likely range of 9 to 15 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 4 to 8 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 2 to 4 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher). In the central Pacific, NOAA predicts an above-normal 2019 hurricane season.

Building off of this year's Hurricane Preparedness Week, I wanted to provide an update on some of the ocean observing plans we at the U.S. IOOS Program have in store for this hurricane season. We are fully engaged in planning with partners from across NOAA, other agencies, and international ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes observing programs. Following last year's significant contributions by the U.S. Navy in the form of shared undewater gliders, we’ve been busy analyzing results from last year, and are preparing for another hurricane season. Last year, partners provided more than 120,000 real-time data profiles to models through the U.S. IOOS Glider Data Assembly Center. Gliders are an increasingly important tool for hurricane research and forecasting because we can steer gliders to gather data where we don’t have any other assets, and they help to identify essential ocean features and processes, such as the mixing of deep cold water and warm surface waters.

Without the best ocean data, we can’t provide our models with the best information for making forecasts. We have much to do to understand the full impact of glider data, and to add their data into operational models. For 2019, we are hoping to capture another quality set of profiles of temperature, salinity, and currents at many depths to provide the most accurate ocean picture possible.

Best wishes, Carl

From the U.S. IOOS Office:
  • IOOS Team Awarded 2019 Bronze Medal: I am delighted to announce Dave Easter, Derrick Snowden, Kathy Bailey, and Tiffany Vance were awarded the 2019 Bronze Medal on May 14th for their work in certifying 11 non-federal IOOS Regions for data management to meet federal data standards, increasing the amount of reliable data available. The Department of Commerce Bronze Medal is the highest honor award that the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere may bestow.  We are so proud that this work is being recognized with this prestigious award. I’d also like to recognize Jack Oliva's role in supporting this effort. Several other staff who are no longer with IOOS also contributed to the successful certification of the regions, including Capt. Scott Kuester (retired), Jen Rhoades (now with NCCOS), and Rob Ragsdale. And of course, the regions themselves, for doing the work to comply with the certification rule and process. Congratulations to everyone for a job well done!

  • The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Overview: NEPA’s procedural requirements apply to a Federal agency’s decisions for actions, including financing, assisting, conducting, or approving projects or programs; agency rules, regulations, plans, policies, or procedures; and legislative proposals. Using the NEPA process, agencies must determine if a proposed action has significant environmental effects. The NEPA process can also serve to meet other environmental review requirements. For instance, actions that require the NEPA process may have an impact on endangered species, historic properties, or low income communities. The NEPA analysis, which takes into account the potential impacts of the proposed action and investigates alternative actions, may also serve as a framework to meet other environmental review requirements, such as the Endangered Species Act, the National Historic Preservation Act, the Environmental Justice Executive Order, and other Federal, State, Tribal, and local laws and regulations. Should you need any further information, please contact the IOOS ECC, Mequela Thomas at

  • 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 - Spring meeting canceled: The Spring meeting of the IOOS Federal Advisory Committee originally scheduled for June3-4 has been postponed until the Fall. For more information, contact Becca Derex,

Observation Subsystem and Sensor Technologies:
  • Surface Current Mapping: (IOOS PO POC, Derrick Snowden,  

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

    • International Glider Meeting: Last week, the US Glider User Group (UG2) hosted an international glider workshop at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. The meeting had over 130 participants from around the world who came together to strengthen international collaboration through community dialogue, exchanges of information, sharing of experiences, and development of best practices to support the glider community. The meeting was a mix of plenary talks and twelve breakout sessions. Plenary talks focused on the myriad of mission areas gliders support including novel and future applications for this unique technology. Breakout sessions focused on community dialog and exchanges of ideas for strengthening collaboration, supporting the exchange of information and best practices, as well as, glider community capacity building. Over the next couple of weeks, the Organizing Committee will work to synthesize the recommendations from the workshop and work with the community to move them forward. All presentations and a workshop report will be made available on the meeting website.
  • Animal Telemetry Network (ATN) (National Coordinator Bill Woodward,

    • No update.
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,

    • pH manual status: We’re grateful for the contributions received from the IOOS RAs and selected subject matter experts supporting the development of the Manual for Real-Time Quality Control of pH Data Observations. These comments are being incorporated into the next version, which will be broadly distributed internationally for a third review. Contact us if you would like to receive a copy of the draft.
    • Currents manual update: We’ve received very good update suggestions from users of the Manual for Real-Time Quality Control of In-Situ Current Observations – thank you very much! There’s still time plenty of time to provide comments before we sign off on the incremental update in July, have a look at the existing manual and let us know how it can be improved.
    • Ocean Best Practice System update: The focus of the recent UG2 / EGO joint international glider workshop held at Rutgers ( was to “Strengthen international collaboration through community dialogue, exchanges of information, sharing of experiences, and development of best practices to support the glider community.” OBPS working group members Emma Henslop and Mark Bushnell each provided presentations highlighting the obvious benefits of the OBPS to the glider community, and a breakout group tasked with discussing best practice documentation further explored the clear synergy. A recommendation to adopt the OBPS to promote glider best practice development and documentation is anticipated in the workshop proceedings.
Modeling and Analysis Subsystem (IOOS PO and IOOS Coastal and Ocean Modeling Testbed (COMT) POC – Derrick Snowden,
  • 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:
  • Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) (IOOS PO POC Gabrielle Canonico,

    • MBON All Hands Meeting - May 24th, 2019: MBON PIs and team members; NOAA, NASA and BOEM federal sponsors; and other federal, non-federal, academic, NGO and private industry partners gathered for the MBON All Hands Meeting on May 24 in Crystal City, VA.  The MBON PIs shared their perspectives on MBON outcomes, including key recommendations to the community and federal agencies about how to construct and maintain a long-term MBON in U.S. waters to meet scientific as well as natural resource management and planning needs.  Discussion included lessons learned, thoughts about sustainability of MBON, methodologies for biology and biodiversity observations that should be expanded (e.g. MBON teams have been influential in advancing eDNA operational applications, integrating in situ with remote sensing observations, refining machine learning technology for identification of species from imagery, and other innovative approaches), data management solutions, and progress on global MBON development.  MBON team members provided updates on strong MBON linkages to the Group on Earth Observations and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission; development of the MBON Pole to Pole activity with multiple nations in the Americas and emerging efforts in Asia-Pacific region; and progress advancing biological observations and applications as part of OceanObs19 and the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development. Other highlights included updates from partner programs such as the Smithsonian-led Marine Global Earth Observatory (MarineGEO), the Animal Telemetry Network (ATN), and GEO Blue Planet.  Participants enjoyed discussion with a panel of federal agency leaders, including Paula Bontempi (NASA), Libby Jewett (NOAA), Jill Lewandowski (BOEM), and Cynthia Schuchman (NSF) around biological and biodiversity information needs in an interagency context and future directions for the information and products generated by MBON. The MBON community and US IOOS are grateful to NASA for hosting this annual gathering; we look forward to next year’s meeting with partners in the new interagency-supported NOPP MBON projects, which will be announced this summer.

  • OceanObs’19 Updates and Planning:

  • Save the date: Ocean Obs RCN Annual Meeting - February 16, 2020, San Diego, CA: The Ocean Obs Research Coordination Network (RCN) will host an OceanObs’19 Conference follow-up meeting on February 16, 2020, in San Diego, CA, immediately preceding the AGU/TOS Ocean Sciences Meeting ( The OceanObs’19 Conference (Hawaii 16-21 September, 2019; will be the third conference of this series, held once every ten years. The Ocean Obs RCN annual meeting on 16 February 2020 will be dedicated to the synthesis of threads and recommendations emerging from the OceanObs’19 Conference. Of particular interest will be focusing the community on the planning for the implementation of initiatives emerging from OceanObs’19. The meeting will advance links between observation networks and operational users to facilitate the delivery of critical information to stakeholders, and to address critical policy issues that require multidisciplinary ocean observing systems. 

  • 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.

  • US Ocean Economy Satellite Account: A Request for Information (RFI) for the first US Ocean Economy Satellite Account (OESA) has now been published on the Federal Register. The OESA is produced by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) in partnership with NOAA to measure the contribution of ocean-based industries to the US GDP. The purpose of the RFI is to solicit input on the approach and definitions used. The general public and industry members can provide input by July 7. This information will be used to improve our  measurements. Any questions or comments regarding the RFI can be directed to

  • New NOS Ocean Today Video - Wave Safe With Bruckner Chase: Join Bruckner Chase, Ocean and Coastal Safety Expert, as he visits our nation’s favorite coasts to share expert tips and local knowledge on how to ensure your visit to any beach stays fun and safe. See the video series here: 

  • New Tool Holds Promise for Precise Water-Level Data Processing: The Center For Operational Oceanographic Products and Services (CO-OPS) is exploring a new Precise Point Positioning (PPP) tool offered online by Natural Resources Canada to process Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) data from NOAA tide stations. Unlike relative positioning systems that rely on the positions of multiple nearby reference stations, the new tool would use data from a single GNSS station to determine an absolute position. CO-OPS engineers are dedicated to building more advanced oceanographic observing systems by testing the best technology available. Their goal is to create sustainable observing systems that can operate in the most challenging conditions. Contact: 

  • National Geodetic Survey (NGS) 2019 Geospatial Summit: Hundreds of stakeholders attended the Geospatial Summit to learn about the planned modernization of the National Spatial Reference System (NSRS). RDML Gallaudet provided the keynote address, enthusiastically describing the importance of the NGS mission and how the NSRS modernization will benefit public safety and the economy. NGS personnel presented updates on the science, service, and education and outreach aspects of the modernization effort. Participants asked questions of NGS experts and heard NSRS modernization case study reports from federal and state stakeholders.

  • Mapping a Lakebed in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary: NCCOS and partners used an autonomous surface vehicle and shipboard sonar to collect lakebed data in Michigan’s Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Data from the mission will be used to update nautical charts, map habitats, and locate lost shipwrecks. The autonomous surface vehicle, called the Bathymetric Explorer and Navigator (BEN), has an array of radar, video cameras, laser range finders, and GPS for navigation. The team followed BEN in GLERL’s R/V Storm for support and recovery in the event of drone malfunction. NCCOS staff will return to the sanctuary in July for additional sonar surveys. In addition to NCCOS, GLERL, and the sanctuary, project partners include the Ocean Exploration Trust and the Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping at the Joint NOAA-University of New Hampshire Hydrographic Center. Contact: 

  • A Boatload of Nautical Products: NOAA's Office of Coast Survey, the nation's nautical chartmaker, provides a suite of products to help make maritime transportation safe for all users. The Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services (CO-OPS) is the authoritative source for accurate, reliable, and timely water-level and current measurements. Explore these free NOAA products available to help make your next trip an enjoyable one. 

  • North Pacific Research Board Seeks Nominations for Advisory & Science Panels: The NPRB is seeking nominations to fill one seat representing the Arctic region on its Advisory Panel and three seats on its Science Panel, beginning October 1, 2019. The deadline for receipt of nomination materials is 4:00 pm AK, Thursday, June 20, 2019. For full details, click here. 

  • Dr. Sidney Thurston Interviewed on the Ron Brown's Indian Ocean Expedition: The UK's Meteorological Technology International publication featured a story on the Ron Brown's eight month global voyage in 2018. Dr. Sidney Thurston of OOMD was interviewed and spoke of the accomplishments of the cruise and the importance of ship-based oceanographic research. The interview included information about several sustained ocean observing programs supported by OOMD, such as RAMA (Research Moored Array for African-Asian-Australian Monsoon Analysis and Prediction), TAO (Tropical Atmosphere Ocean) moorings, and GO-SHIP (Global Ocean Ship-based Hydrographic Investigations Program). Dr. Thurston explained how data from these platforms helps us understand global ocean warming as well as other trends in the global ocean and the climate.

Delivering the Benefits:
  • New ocean acidification monitoring station in American Samoa: NOAA, the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS), and partners have launched a new buoy in Fagatele Bay within the National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa to measure carbon dioxide and other important seawater characteristics within the bay’s vibrant tropical coral reef ecosystem.  Read the full press release here or click here to see PacIOOS' data visualizations.

  • CeNCOOS, SCCOOS & partners awarded MPA monitoring research grant: At its May 23 meeting, the California Ocean Protection Council (OPC) unanimously approved seven research projects through the Marine Protected Area Monitoring Program. The awards are administered by California Sea Grant in partnership with the OPC and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. The project "Integrated ocean observing systems for assessing marine protected areas across California,” a partnership between CeNCOOS, SCCOOS, Axiom, and UC Santa Cruz, seeks to address the question of how resource managers can separate the ecological consequences of removing or reducing fishing pressure inside an MPA from environmental conditions.  Read more about the project here.

  • NANOOS Participates in Washington Maritime Blue Forum: Held at Seattle's Bell Harbor Conference Center, the event was designed to connect the robust Information and Communication Tech Sector with the expansive Maritime Sector. Jan Newton, NANOOS Executive Director, speak on the Ocean Health Observation and Technology Panel and focused on how NANOOS offers data and forecasts supporting both ocean health assessment as well as ocean condition visualization to enable safe and efficient maritime operations and navigation. NANOOS also had a booth that Paul Rudell used to demo NVS and NANOOS products to wide-ranging interest.


  • No update.

  • New HAB Monitoring paper published: The paper "Scaling Up From Regional Case Studies to a Global Harmful Algal Bloom Observing System," led by U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System Regional Associations and HAB experts, was published in Frontiers in Marine Science. Check out the full paper, and it's recommendations for scaling up to a global observing system for HABs, here!

  • Gliders vs. Hurricanes in NOAA's May Planet Stewards webinar: Rutgers Dr. Travis Miles presented a glider-centric webinar for NOAA's May Planet Stewards program this Month.  The topic, "Huricanes & Robots: How New Technology is Changing the Way We Study and Predict Extreme Storms," breaks down new research into these storms using unmanned underwater gliders for educators from every walk of life.  Check out the archived webinar here, and learn more about the Planet Stewards program here!

  • SECOORA awarded Challenge Grant for temperature loggers: Funding from the Curtis and Edith Munson Foundation is allowing  SECOORA and the FACT Network to purchase and deploy water temperature loggers at acoustic receiver locations. Water temperature data will provide fundamental information to help our understanding of how temperature impacts fish habitat use and the development of predictive models of temperature dependent fish behavior, model validation for hurricanes, and coral reef response to water temperature.  Read more (and learn about the challenge!) here.

  • IOOS Enterprise in the News:

Upcoming Meetings with IOOS Participation:
  • 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:

  • 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:

  • International Association for Great Lakes Research, 10-14 June, Brockport, NY: Join GLOS, GLERL, and others for four days of scientific sessions and speakers focusing on the conference theme Large Lakes Research: Connecting People and Ideas.  For more information or to register:

  • 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.

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:!