Bi-Weekly IOOS® Z-GRAM – 2 October 2015


ZGram picThe Z-Gram is an informal way of keeping you up-to-date on US IOOS® activities. Pass it on! Please reply with an e-mail with additional addresses or if you no longer want to receive the Z-Gram. Previous Updates


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From the IOOS Program Office:

  • IOOS Federal Advisory Meeting: The meeting will be held November 3-4, 2015 in St.
    Thomas, USVI. There will be a webex. The agenda will be ready for the website next week.
  • Certification: Congratulations to GLOS who submitted their application on 25 Sep – the 90
    day clock has started.

Observation Subsystem and Sensor Technologies:

  • HF Radar (IOOS national coordinator, Jack Harlan;
    • The global HF Radar community met in Crete along with the Global Ocean Observing
      System (GOOS) Regional Forum. See the new Global HF Radar Website: Check out the Interactive Map of
      High Frequency Radar. Your radar not there? Contact Hugh Roarty:
  • Determining Vertical Land Motion at CORS and NWLON Stations: NOAA’s Center for
    Operational Oceanographic Products and Services’ latest technical report provides general
    guidance for the determination of vertical land motion at long-term continuously operating
    water level stations, for the purpose of separating this signal from relative water level
    change as measured at the water level station and the subsequent determination of absolute
    water level change.
  • Glider Updates:
    • AOOS Increases Observing Activities in the Arctic: A robotic underwater
      glider is now flying off the northwest coast of Alaska monitoring marine mammal
      distributions and their relationship with oceanographic conditions in the Chukchi Sea. The glider was deployed in mid-July by the University of Alaska field team for the third year of
      a multiyear monitoring study funded by AOOS. The buoyancy-controlled glider is equipped
      with a passive acoustic device called DMON (digital acoustic monitoring instrument), which
      is installed inside the glider while a hull-mounted hydrophone monitors frequencies between
      10 and 7500 Hz (the frequency range for both marine mammals as well as background
      noise). More here.

Data Management and Communications (DMAC) Subsystem and Tools Built on IOOS data:

(Contact Derrick or Rob to get on the list serve for changes -,

  • QARTOD Update: lead Mark Bushnell - New manual for real-time quality control of dissolved nutrients observations posted:  This eighth manual was created with extensive input from dissolved nutrients experts within the ocean-observing community, including sensor manufacturers, academic institutions, and U.S. IOOS Regional Associations.
    Archiving: Mathew Biddle, the NCEI lead for the NCEI-IOOS Data Pipeline project, has developed a google sites page that describes steps and requirements for RAs to set up data archival with NCEI. 
  • PacIOOS adds 55 new bathymetry data sets: These digital Elevation Models (DEMs) of the ocean bottom provide measurements of ocean depth and can be found in Voyager's "seafloor" category. Data were collected through ship-borne multi-beam sonar surveys with or without satellite-derived nearshore bathymetry. Resolution varies between 1km (global model), 5m (e.g., Majuro lagoon, Marshall Islands) and 1m (e.g., Apra Harbor, Guam).  The new bathymetry layers can be combined with the recently added DEMs for land to create an enhanced three dimensional effect. The ocean bottom and land DEMs offer a wealth of display options seldom found in online mapping tools -- be sure to check it out in PacIOOS Voyager! All data sets have been added to the PacIOOS data servers to enable standardized, interoperable, and remote access mechanisms (such as Web Map Service) to incorporate, visualize, and redistribute the data to our users.
  • AOOS adds 3 water level stations to the Real-Time Sensor Portal:  Data feeds from water level sensors installed at Platinum, Wales, and Kotzebue have been added to the Real-Time Sensor Portal. Water level sensors can be accessed on the Real-Time Sensor Portal here. These sensors were installed by the Alaska State Department of Natural Resources Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys and the data is managed by the National Weather Service.
  • Water Quality Monitoring Units Successfully Installed in the St. Lucie Estuary, Florida: Over the summer, five Land/Ocean Biogeochemical Observatory (LOBO) units were installed in the Indian River Lagoon and St. Lucie Estuary on the east coast of Florida.  The LOBO units provide real-time, high-accuracy and high-resolution water-quality data and archived data via a simple web-based interface. The deployments of the LOBOs is part of the Indian River Lagoon Observatory (IRLO) Program established by FAU's Harbor Branch, a SECOORA member.  Data from the LOBO units in the Indian River Lagoon is integrated into IOOS through SECOORA, allowing comparative studies both within Florida and in the nation (information found here).

Modeling and Analysis Subsystem:

(IOOS PO and IOOS Coastal and Ocean Modeling Testbed (COMT) POC – Becky Baltes (

  • No update.

Interagency and International Collaboration/News:

  • IOOC Glider Task Team:  The IOOC Glider TT held their kick-off meeting this week.
  • The 62nd Eastern Pacific Oceanography Conference (EPOC): EPOC brought together 80 scientists including undergraduate and graduate students, post-docs and scientists from universities, Federal and state agencies, and non-profit organizations.  This year's meeting included presentations on a broad range of research, including that done by scientists associated with several NOAA laboratories (NWFSC, SWFSC, AFSC, PMEL,ESRL), Cooperative Institutes (JISAO, CIMEC, CIMRS), and Ocean Observing Systems (CeNCOOS, SCCOOS, NANOOS).  This year’s themes included "Hot and strange times in the California Current - a look at 2014-2015 from all angles," "The role of sub-mesoscale and mesoscale processes in structuring ecosystem dynamics in the Eastern Pacific Ocean," "The future is now: hypoxia and ocean acidification in the Eastern Pacific," and "Predictability of biology across space-time trophic scales." At least a quarter of the presentations utilized data provided by or connected with the west coast observing systems NANOOS, SCCOOS, and CeNCOOS ( 
  • Sandy Topo-Bathy Lidar and Imagery Now Available on Digital Coast:  The entirety of the Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy airborne topographic-bathymetric (“topo-bathy”) LiDAR elevation data and imagery are now available on NOAA’s Digital Coast, covering approximately 2,654 square miles of impacted areas along the East coast.
  • BOEM and NOAA team up on a story map to explaining Marine Mammal Models for Ocean Planning Applications:  A new story map, Predicting Cetacean Density with Geospatial Models, describes how scientists use data collected by NOAA, state agencies, and academic institutions to produce detailed maps of dolphin, porpoise, and whale distributions. The story map translates how the data were modeled in a user-friendly way to help coastal managers use this valuable information for ocean planning applications.

Delivering Benefits:

  • SCCOOS Hosts Ocean Data: Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant Outfall Diversion Project:  The City of Los Angeles will divert the Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant's effluent from its 5-mile outfall to its auxiliary 1-mile outfall. The diversion will occur September 21 - October 26, 2015. Effluent will be switched from the 5-mile outfall to the 1-mile outfall with an average of 230 million gallons per day (mgd) over this 5 week period. Various ocean monitoring instruments are being hosted on the SCCOOS website, i.e. High Frequency Radar (HFR), Space-based Vehicles (Satellites), Current Drifters, Wirewalker, Continuous Surface Mapping and a Profiling CTD. Other chemical and biological measurements are also being taken.
  • Humboldt Oyster Conditions Dashboard CeNCOOS released the new Humboldt Bay Oyster Conditions dashboard, the culmination of months of work between CeNCOOS developers, Humboldt Bay scientists, and shellfish growers.  The product provides easy access to ocean information for the region’s mariculture industry. More here.
  • New Report Details 10 Years of Improvements in Gulf Observation Systems: A new report from the Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System Regional Association (GCOOS-RA) details the first 10 years of the nonprofit organization’s work to improve access to ocean observing data that helps to protect and preserve the Gulf and its residents. The report, “The Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System: 10 Years of Protecting and Preserving the Gulf,” was published in recognition of the organization’s 10th anniversary and released at its September board meeting in St. Petersburg, Fla.
  • MyMARACOOS to support Tropical Storm Joaquin:  While the east coast dodged this storm, MARACOOS was ready.  RPS ASA partnered with the Mid-Atlantic Regional Association Coastal Ocean Observing System (MARACOOS) to create, a mobile portal that allows users to explore and examine ocean and weather information in the Mid-Atlantic region.
  • Ocean Observing Systems in Action:  On September 16th, an earthquake with a magnitude of 8.3 struck Chile, sending off a tsunami wave towards Chile's coast and across the Pacific Ocean. The Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami (DART) and tide and water level stations throughout the Pacific recorded the deviations of water levels. Users can easily access all DART buoy and water level stations data through PacIOOS Voyager to find out how the tsunami caused anomalies with respect to the tidal cycle. Explore the buoys and stations to see ocean observing in action.   NOAA’s CO-OPS’ tsunami capable tide stations in the Pacific were able to "see" the waves generated by the 8.3 magnitude earthquake that struck off the coast of Chile Wednesday night. These stations transmit water level information every minute and support national tsunami warning and mitigation efforts. In general, the Pacific Islands and U.S. West Coast were affected, but the signals were strongest at Hilo, HI and Pago Pago, American Samoa.


  • Certification: IOOS Program Office briefed Aschley Schiller, House Appropriations Committee, CJS Subcommittee Majority Staff on IOOS Certification. The briefing was requested by Ms. Schiller after her seeing the NOAA announcement of the PacIOOS certification. Ms. Schiller was supportive of certification.  

Communications / Outreach / Education:

  • Centimeters matter when telling the time: The latest Making Waves podcast features an interview with NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey’s (NGS) Derek van Westrum and describes how NGS is helping NIST.  NIST is developing atomic clocks that are so accurate that the effects of the general theory of relativity come into play. If two of these clocks are at slightly different elevations—even a few centimeters—the higher clock runs noticeably faster. The podcast explains how NGS helped to solve this problem.  Episode Link:

Upcoming Meetings with IOOS Participation:

  • Mark your calendars for MTS Oceans 2015 and associated events:
    • “Promoting Sustainable Usage of the Oceans” seminar we are planning at Johns Hopkins SAIS on Monday, Oct. 19 – for more info contact Michael Jones, The Maritime Alliance,
    • Exciting Events sponsored by US IOOS, The Maritime Alliance and MTS all focused on the Blue Economy, Blue Tech, Blue Voice and Blue STEM:
      • Tuesday- Ignite! A lightning round of innovations, discoveries, and applications in Blue Tech – Moderated by Dr. Holly Bamford Acting Assistant Secretary for Conservation and Management, NOAA – will feature the following talks:
        • Margaret Davidson, Acting Director of NOAA Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management
        • Mr. Fred Whoriskey, Executive Director of Canada’s Ocean Tracking Network (OTN)
        • Dr. Gregory Dusek, Oceanographer in CO-OPS
        • Dr. Carol Janzen, Director of Operations and Development, AOOS
        • Dr. Edel O'Connor, National Coordinator, Advanced Marine Technology Programme Marine Institute
        • Dr. Jeremy Mathis, Director, NOAA Arctic Research Program (ARP)
        • Laurie Jugan, Program Coordinator of Mississippi Marine Industries Science & Technology Cluster (MIST)
        • Dr. Ralph Rayner, Sector Director for Energy & Environment, BMT Group
        • David Murphy, Director of Science, Sea-Bird Electronics
        • Gerhard Kuska, Executive Director MARACOOS
      • Wednesday’s Townhall - Blue Economy, Blue Tech, Blue Voice will be moderated by Sherri Goodman President and CEO of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership with a senior panel that includes:
        • Laurie Jugan, Program Coordinator of MIST
        • Harlan Doliner, Counsel and Board Chair of MOTN
        • Fred Terral, President, CEO and Executive Creative Director of Brand Architecture

View the IOOS calendar:


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