Archive for November 2nd, 2009

And She May Go All The WAYYYYYY! (and you’ll be able to see it all in Google Earth!)

Monday, November 2nd, 2009


This week, Team Google Earth has been working hard on making headway on our new mission. We are doing what has never been done in Google Earth: Plot a vertical axis path of RU27! While Google Earth is great for horizontal overlays, we are pushing the boundaries by using Google SketchUp. SketchUp is normally used to create 3D objects such as buildings in the New York skyline, but we are learning to work with only one of the planes (2D) to make a vertical plot.

To start our long process of adding these plots we are currently researching through the Atlantic Crossing Blog major changes in RU27s course. Bio-blips, dive and climb angles, and deflection depths are all examples of pieces of data that are paramount for showing the gliders course under the water (see below for preview).

Underwater path of RU27

Underwater path of RU27

Here is a sample of data we are looking/collecting at:

Blog Post Date: July 8, 2009 "Biology Blip Compilation: YO Anomalies"

Biology Blips on June 4, July 4, and July 7, 2009.

Depth of occurances at 40-100m (3 events); 61.4-61.6m (1 event); 60-130m (1 event), respectively.

From this data we can find important events which will we then visualize on the glider's vertical flight path!

In addition to the vertical profile, since we are currently working on a web page, to help Igor, we are going to ask everyone to submit their Kmzs for Google Earth via email to Dave Kaminsky, Chris Filosa, or Jason Werrell. We will then organize them by categorizing them and adding a short description of each. We want the .kmzs to be easy to find for anyone who wants to follow our research here in the COOLroom, whether they are a regular scientific follower or a newcomer with little or no science background. With all the .kmzs categorized, visitors to the site can pick data that they want to follow, understand what the data represents, and how to read it.

Finally, we thought up a team description/mission statement:

Team Google Earth: Dave Kaminsky, Chris Filosa, Jason Werrell

Being that Google Earth has become a primary visual data compilation source for the Rutgers Glider Fleet, our team's mission has three main goals. Our first goal is to make data downloading, reading, and understanding easy for the general public, and our second goal is to organize and keep data up-to-date for the glider and science teams. Our final goal is to work to unlock and advance the capabilities of Google Earth for data manipulation, visualization, and application.

Colorful Cobwebs Over the World

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

In the spirit of Halloween we decided to color all over the world! Just kidding! Actually we have finally created a large scale map with a majority of the historic crossing of the exploration era.

Historic CrossingsThe Yellow curvy path is that of RU27's. Its intresting to see where our path crosses that of different expiditions.

Look in the future for the Kmz's so you can have them on your own computer! The should be up with in the week!

Good Sailing!
(Dan and Erin)

November 2 Evening update

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Why are the gliders heading in a circle?

The first big victory of the OOI OSSE occurred on Sunday night.  The planning and prosecution software used model forecasts to provide a series of the waypoints that were loaded into the glider flight plans.  The waypoints guided the gliders for the day.  At 2:00 EDT we in the team conference call agreed to a series of offshore waypoints fanning the three gliders out across the shelf.  Upon some of the afternoon call backs we notice that the gliders we heading back to shore!  That reflects, our guess, the glider heading back to a waypoint inshore by the path planner, and the glider had went past the assigned waypoint during its flight.  The glider therefore backed up and headed back to the missed point.  The gliders now however have been given a series of new waypoints and have begun to now swing around and head back offshore.  It will be an interesting experiment as the currents are strong and perhaps the gliders will be advected offcourse during the next few hours.  We will have some fun exploring ways to optimize the software as part of this OOI construction phase.



The conditions of the shelf have not changed dramatically over the last 12 hours. There are strong northward flowing currents.  The particle loads are enhanced in the nearshore bottom waters.  Not shown, but the no stratification in temperature and mild cross shore gradients in salinity.



Where are we going? Below the yellow line shows the actual glider path.  The blue line shows the CI path planning course (here using the path planning based on the Rutgers ROMs model).  We will follow to see how well the glider does.  There will be several things to follow in the coming days, we have several different ocean models, you can check to see how different the predictions are between the models.  We can see how well the glider does.  Remember if the glider does not follow the path planning it can reflect unrealistic models, it can reflect changing ocean conditions, it can reflect ocean conditions stronger than glider flight capabilities.  Updates to follow in the AM!  Real ocean tests are always the best!


“It is not the ship so much as the skillful sailing that assures the prosperous voyage.”-George William Curtis

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

This week we continued to take screen shots of the ship traffic. It seemed like a pretty quiet week at sea with a moderate amount of shipping traffic.

October 28, 2009 7:29 pm

October 28, 2009 7:29 pm EST

Last Wednesday, there were a moderate number of boats traveling along the coast of Spain. Most were inside the designated 10° West with about a handful lingering just outside the shipping lanes.

October 29, 2009 1:14 pm EST

October 29, 2009 1:14 pm EST

Thursday the density of traffic picked up a little with a considerable amount of boats traveling the coast on this day. There were some ships outside the shipping lanes but nothing to far that seems like it would be of much concern when picking up RU27.

October 30, 2009 5:17 pm EST

October 30, 2009 5:17 pm EST

Friday was a lot like Wednesday with moderate traffic and just a couple boats outside the shipping lanes.

October 31, 2009 1:54 am EST

October 31, 2009 1:54 am EST

Saturday was the heaviest day of traffic traveling through both the shipping lanes and outside of them. There were a considerable number of ships lingering outside 10° West and some could be seen as a concern for their distance outside the designated area.

November 1, 2009 10:25 pm EST

November 1, 2009 10:25 pm EST

Sunday was a light day at sea with a small number of boats especially in comparison to Saturday's screenshot. There seems to be one lone boat outside the shipping lanes so nothing of too much concern.

November 2, 2009 7:52 pm EST

November 2, 2009 7:52 pm EST

Today was again a busy day up and down the coast of Spain and Portugal. There was a large number of ships traveling today and a large amount outside 10° West. A few ships,being pretty far outside the shipping lanes, seem like their distance could be seen as a potential concern when picking up RU27.

This week we also overlaid some of the screenshots we've been taking into Google Earth. The image overlaid this week is from October 30th at 1:08 am EST.

Image Overlay

Image Overlay into Google Earth

From the zoomed in shot we are able to see the shipping lanes and ship traffic in relation to RU27.

Image Overlay into Google Earth

Image Overlay into Google Earth

Over the next week we will continue taking screen shots and overlaying them into Google Earth and hopefully we will be able to help make a decision on how far from shore RU27 needs to be picked up in order to avoid a possible run in with a ship.

-Amelia, Leo, Shannon


Monday, November 2nd, 2009

i Hola Amigos !

I've been brainstorming all week and throwing together different ideas and I finally came up with one design for the front and one for the back that is simple yet intruiging enough to truly capture the essence of the RU27 mission. I used two different fonts, one more conservative and one that I thought fit the illustrations well. Check them out, leave your input, and enjoy

Front Logo 1

Front Logo 1

Front Logo 2

Front Logo 2

Back Logo 1

Back Logo 1

Back Logo 2

Back Logo 2

The front logo has the RU symbol with the 27 inside of it.

The back logo has the ru27's path, with the globe, and the gliders. i tried to angle the gliders to represent the trajectory that they take as they move through the water column.

Our barnacle group met this week and we basically reviewed all that we researched in the past few weeks. We are currently trying to figure out what other aspect of the barnacles we can study.

Buenos Noches,


Brian, Montana, Amanda


Adding onto Gina's post on the sweatshirts here are some things I sketched up...the drawing that majority liked last year but without color (we need to talk about if we are putting color on the sweatshirt and if so how many colors), and a new one:


going for a cartoon scarlet


or with currents...

Wave tidbits

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Hello all!

Unfortunately we were unable to meet this week because of exams and colds, but Melissa and I e-mailed all of our wave research from September to December  2007-2009 to Igor, and we are still in the process of putting together older data from 2000 to 2006.

During the week, we specifically started looking at the maximum significant waves heights and their weather conditions.  To start, most of the maxima occurred when winds were above 10 mph.  If the maxima had low winds, there were strong winds the day or hours before.  A lot of the days happened to be cloudy and rainy as well. The day with the biggest wave height (December 10, 2007 with 9.2 m) was the only maxima whose winds were below 10 mph (7 mph).  It started to rain the same hour the wave formed.  This is only a tidbit of what we found out, but all of our findings will be posted online soon!

That is all!

Dani and Melissa

State of the Ocean and System, Nov 2, 2009

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Join the OSSE team!  We really encourage people to check out the sites at:

It is an open site that will allow anybody to join the workgroups.  The goal again is to explore the Mid-Atlantic Bight and to provide as much feedback as possible to the OOI CI team.  The site is outfitted with a series tools and resources. Also check out the web site of the data, in simple check out our ocean!

OK onto business, what is the status of the Mid-Atlantic Bight today?

From our JPL buddies we have the daily update. Weather forecast for 11/01/2009 - Southerly winds are observed during the weekend with a speed around 10. NAM forecasts indicate that the wind will switch to northerly winds by Monday and last for about two days with about the same magnitude. Because of the improved weather conditions, there is therefore excellent satellite coverage for SST. We continue to receive four ocean model forecasts on the daily basis. A multi-model ensemble forecast is constructed based on the equal weighting method. The variance of the ensemble forecast is also estimated and will be used to guide the glider deployment in the coming days. Four model forecasts are also compared with observed SST and surface current. A Google Earth (GE) based web interface is also developed to track the four gliders being deployed.

For the gliders, the three nearshore glider are flying extremely well and are being passed by the offshore glider moving in. We are making good progress.   We had the first CI assisted way-points sent to the gliders last night.  A big step, that now we iterate on to make it more useful. So over the last 12 hours we have had our formation of four gliders.


What are the gliders seeing?  They this morning were seeing strong northward flowing currents. no temperture stratification with a mild cross shore gradient.  As before the particle loads as indicated by optical backscatter.  The regions of enhanced backscatter are also associated with high chlorophyll.






Iridium or Homing Pigeon?

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

This week we attempted to send an image by an iridium connection to the cool room and it was a rough start, batteries and satellite connection posed a great big obstical but we will try to sort everything out and try to do it again this week!! as of now we are more confident bringing a homing pigeon! Thank you to Al and Filipa for all of your help! Safe travels home and we will keep in touch for class!

Communication Across the Atlantic

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

So this week we sent Igor our KMZ for the active moorings from the RAPID-MOC array in the Atlantic.

Additionally we've been in contact with Dr. Julie Collins who is a Data Scientist at the British Oceanographic Data Centre, Dr. Stuart A. Cunningham from the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton who is currently out at sea recovering and redeploying the transatlantic array, and Paul Wright who is part of the Ocean Observing and Climate at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton.  Josh thought it would be a good idea to discuss their emails in class.

Paul Wright originally thought we were talking about Scarlet and offered:

  1. Glider data from 21st May 2009 to 17th July 2009, corrected for hysteresis and gridded onto a 20 dbar pressure grid.  Also raw data if you would prefer.
  2. Data from mooring site EBH5 at 27 50.36'N 13 32.81'W (CTDs at approx 120 dbar, 190 dbar 270 dbar, CTD and currents 440dbar and 740 dbar).  EBH4 at 27 50.99'N 13 32.41'W (CTDs at 295 dbar and 5 more deeper until 800 dbar), EBM1 at 27 53.66'N 13 24.34'W (509 dbar). EBM4 at 27 54.46'N 13 22.09'W (294 dbar) and finally EBM6 at 27 55.19'N 13 19.91'W (105 dbar).  This data runs from mid-November 2008 up to a few days ago...  I am currently working on gridding and working the data up to compare with the glider data.  The mooring data is NOT calibrated yet, but the offsets are likely to be fairly small.

Paul Wright would be willing to send any files over straight away if you think we can use them for 27.  Once he realized we were talking about Drake he responded:

"We are due to turn around the MAR moorings sometime next week.  We expect to be at MAR1, the only mooring with a shallow section, by Saturday.  It is a fair distance from your glider though at 24 10.54'N 49 43.69'W with CTDs at approx 50m, 100m, 175m, 250m, 325 m etc to the bottom.  EB1 is at 23 45.44N 24 05.31W and also has shallow MicroCATs."


We've been speaking to Dr. Julie Collins about data from 2004-2008.  We requested temperature, salinity, currents, and chlorophyll and her response was:

"There are quite a lot of data from various platforms spanning the Atlantic across 26N from the RAPIDMOC project. As there is so much, and I'm not sure exactly what you are looking for I will describe what is available:

  1.  Mooring data from subsurface moorings
  2.  Transatlantic hydrographic section performed in 2004 along 26N along with discrete sample data
  3.  CTD casts taken from onboard ship when servicing moorings
  4.  Ship underway data
  5.  Shipboard ADCP data

Are you just interested in the mooring data?
Subsurface moorings are deployed in 3 sub-arrays in the Eastern Atlantic, Western Atlantic and straddling the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Are you interested in all three areas or just the Eastern Boundary?
With regard to the mooring data, only temperature, salinity and currents are available. There is no moored chlorophyll data."

So we wanted to discuss in class what exactly would be the best data to request?

Marcus and Kaycee

AUV team is arriving robots in Hand.

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

The Cal-poly team has arrived in Tuckerton and is busy getting the systems ready for deployments.  The deployment schedule for the week is post below and was provided by the AUV team leader Arjuna Balasuryia.  The MIT and NURC teams arrive tomorrow.  The plans & team are provided below.


Preliminary Test Plan for AUV operations


1. MIT - On-board autonomy (Back-seat driver) and Ocean Model

2. NUWC - IVER AUV (Hammerhead)

3. Cal.Poly - IVER2 AUV

4. JPL - Mission planning, EO-1 and Ocean Model

5. Rutgers - REMUS AUV, SLOCUM gliders, MODIS, AVHRR and Ocean Model, R/V Arabella

6. UMass - Ocean Model

7. Stevens - Ocean Model

8. UNC - Ocean Model


This trial is scheduled for the period of Nov. 4 - 6, 2009 in the mid-Atlantic bite region to demonstrate the planning and prosecution sub-system under the OOI-CI.


1. Deployment of mobile assets to capture an Ocean feature. Identification of the Ocean feature based on Ocean models and plan missions to deploy a fleet of mobile assets.

2. Feed data from the field nodes back to the models

3. Demonstrate the on-board autonomy of the mobile assets for adaptive ocean sampling

4. Demonstrate the cluster autonomy capabilities of the mobile assets in an acoustic communication network for adaptive ocean sampling.

Field Operations

Datum: Latitude 39o 25/ 06.82//N, Longitude 74o 11/ 55.08//W

Gateway Buoy: Latitude 39o 27/ 46.17//N, Longitude 74o 08/ 23.20//W


Fig. 1: AUV operation area 10km x 10km box

Communication Infrastructure

All the AUVs are equipped with a WHOI micro-modem. R/V Arabella will have a modem on a side connected to the top-side command and control station. Top-side command and control station consist of a display tracking all the mobile assets in operations and this view can be shared through the Google Earth. It also has a control panel to re-direct all the assets including commands for adaptive ocean sampling. In addition to the modem on the side, Arabella will have a RF link to the gateway buoy for wider acoustic communication coverage.

Day by day operations




Operations near the field station. Setup the lab and command and control station on Arabella. Check the vehicle status and run couple of front seat missions around the field station to check the low-level controllers and sensors. Check on acoustic communication links. Run back-seat missions. On recovery upload data to MIT server.


Go out to sea deploy the gateway buoy and run missions in the box in Fig. 1. Deploy the assets to the loiter points determined by ASPEN/CASPER. Check track-trail behaviors on IVERs for collaborative missions with REMUS. Run a collaborative sampling mission with REMUS running a grid box and IVERS trailing it. REMUS will do a race-track out of the box and back and IVERS will re-acquire REMUS. Run thermo-cline missions using IVERS to demonstrate the adaptive ocean sampling capabilities. There will be few virtual vehicles simulated on board the ship collaborating with the real AUVs to test cluster autonomy behaviors. On recovery transfer data for analysis.


Half day ops at sea running similar missions as on 11/05/09. After lunch recover the gateway buoy and get back to shore for unloading.