18 The Results of the Field Evaluation of NDBC's Prototype Self-Contained Ocean Observations Payload (SCOOP)

Thursday, 2 July 2015
Salon A-3 & A-4 (Hilton Chicago)
Richard H. Bouchard, NOAA/NDBC, Stennis Space Center, MS; and R. V. Hervey, W. McCall, R. Beets, M. D. Robbie, C. Wills, J. Tancredi, M. Vasquez, and S. DiNapoli

Handout (3.8 MB)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Data Buoy Center (NDBC) is undertaking a fundamental and broad transformation of its ocean observing systems on moored buoys. This transformation is necessary to gain efficiencies in maintaining operational ocean observation networks and to increase their reliability. The Self-Contained Ocean Observations Payload (SCOOP) takes advantage of the advances in communications and small, efficient, multi-purpose sensors to reduce the size and costs of systems and expand the suite of available real-time ocean observations.

NDBC has successfully completed a 90-day field evaluation of three prototype systems in the Gulf of Mexico. The field evaluations indicate that SCOOP meets or exceeds NDBC's established criteria for the accuracy of its marine measurements and the detailed results will be presented.

The advances in communications allow NDBC to increase the precision and decrease the latency of the observations from its moored buoys. SCOOP will provide an expanded suite of observations to include subsurface ocean temperature measurements to assist in determining hurricane energy potential and includes visual camera systems to provide daytime horizontal visibility estimations. The camera images can also serve to corroborate many of the automatic observations.

The results of the successful field evaluation pave the way for the operational deployments of SCOOP in the Atlantic Ocean in time to provide the expanded suite of ocean observations during the 2015 hurricane season.

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