Archive for the ‘NORUS’ Category

NORUS workshop 2

Friday, November 27th, 2009

Hey all!

The purpose of our journey to San Luis Obispo was to educate the participants of the NORUS program of new technologies that could be used to research the changing Arctic environment.  Additionally there were many opportunities to have fun.  For example, we started the workshop by hiking in a state park:img_14621

Monday 23:

On Monday, John Kerfoot gave an detailed overview on the "guts" of the glider and the programming required to run a smooth mission.img_1609After putting RU16 back together, we brought RU16 out to a ballasting tank on the Cal Poly Pier to prepare it for a brief mission along the California coast.pic_0024


Tuesday 24:

On Tuesday we quickly went through the mission planning for 16's trip around California and got out on the Zodiac to deploy.img_1701

After deployment Cal Poly participants informed us about the IVER 2, a propelled AUV that uses sonar to monitor the coast. Although the IVER2 run short-term missions, it is very efficient and is low cost.img_1734

Scott Layton, Cal Poly

Scott Layton, Cal Poly


Wednesday 25:

On Wednesday, Mark Moline educated us on the REMUS, another AUV.  It is like the IVER2 because it runs short-term missions, however it carries more sensors and has a GPS system.  The students had a short competition to write code for a mission that was then carried out a little ways off the pier. img_1770img_1783

We then learned about crawlers, which are small tank-like sampler that crawl along the bottom of a basin and take samples; and ROVs, which are small, tethered, and remotely controlled robots.img_1807img_1815


Thursday 26:

On Thursday we celebrated Thanksgiving the "California way" by learning how to surf and having a nice traditional thanksgiving dinner (including turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and mashed potatoes) at a country club.img_1831


Friday 27:

Friday, we worked as a group on the lay out of the NORUS website,, and discussed future workshops in Tronjheim and Svalbard.  Also mentioned are relevant courses taught at UNIS in Svalbard that are to happen at the beginning of May and in mid September (

That's all for now.  I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving and break!

Dani, Katie, Colin, and Nilsen

Sitting on the beach with some crazy norweigans!

Monday, November 23rd, 2009

Katie here with an update from california and the NORUS program. It's officially day 2 and we have already learned so much.

Saturday consisted of a hike through a local state park including tide pooling, rock climbing, and a very adament lecture from mark about poison oak. sun-on-wavesmarkAfter our hike we enjoyed dinner at a local restaurant followed by a glider overview presentation by Rutgers' own John Kerfoot.

This morning began with a walk out to the Cal Poly Pier, a wonderful station that they are letting us borrow for this week. We began with a physical glider overview including what parts go where, and what each part does.  After a few minor problems with the glider, we put the glider in the tank and made sure our ballasting was accurate. We then spent some time working on the program's website: . After this we are going to  have short break and dinner.  We then plan to have a lecture on autonomus vehicles from Cal-polys own Dr. Chis Clark.

Keep your eyes peeled for more pictures and information from the work shop!

-Katie, Dani, Colin and Neils

The NORUS group

Storm warning!

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Storm David & all,

I was just informed of the impending weather for our gliders:

This is nearshore, it could be worse where some of the vehicles are:

Right now we are blowing 20-30 knots from the NE, smack into the gliders:

This is going to last into Sunday, its going to be very interesting.

I am not sure what the plans are for the gliders but each one is going to likely fall at least 20 miles to the SW.  Gliders can swim perpendicular to currents and get places but not into them.  I think that is what is happening for ru21.  The predominant current in that area is to the SSW:

I am sending these links because there is a Nor'easter coming and were not going to be able to go anywhere.  These are the links we usually use so that all can track.

No gliders are in danger.

ud_134 is going to be blown quite south.  This might seal the deal on a Delaware recovery I was throwing around.  We will see come Sunday and how we approach this storm and where we end up + remaining battery life.

ru05 will get blown too and hopefully have enough battery to make it back.  We will look at battery levels come end of the week to see if we need to turn off upcast sampling to buy us some time.

What we need to decide is what we want to do for the next 3 days or so for science. Were forcasted 30 knots through Friday.  Do we want to station keep (we will lose but will fall away the least amount) as best we can?  Waypoints to the NE at a decent distance will do this and leave current correction on.  If we want the gliders to get somewhere its going to take some fancy flying and should be discussed on case by case basis and no NE waypoint is likely going to be obtained.  We will start to see the blow soon, ru21 is seeing because of the direction it is heading.

I will continue to monitor the gliders and send out another email if need be.

Thanks for reading.
David Aragon

The Room Speaks and we have an OOI community decision

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Today at the community workshop at the end of lunch, we asked the room to decide on a group mission.  The room has spoken, and the answer is muddeled!!!!!  I gave the room around 100 people 2 choices.  The first choice was to fan out, the second choice was to come together.  In grand fashion it was a 50/50 split, so as a compromise we will bring two gliders together.  And we will fan two gliders out.  So here is the plan

Lets move RU21 and the Blue Hen to meet each other.  The rendevous site is 39 degrees and 26 minutes.

For the other gliders to split them out, RU05 and RU23 lets move them apart.  I don't have any strong opinions so leave that to the roup, I just want to avoid shipping lanes.

I am unlikely going to be able to make the phone call, can the group using the planning tools to drive home the potential to room tomorrow morning.  Make us look smart!!

The daily group image

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

From Lisa to the group:

Attached are the most recent tracks,  11/11/09
Includes tomorrows EO-1 target.
Too cloudy to update SST.
FYI, target alert has been posted this AM for EO-1 tasking. (the red thumb tack)


OOI community workshop begins, I explore the ocean from the back of the room

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Quick update as I sit in the back of the room at the OOI community workshop.  We will be re-tasking the gliders based on input from the community here at the workshop.  So a quick check on the progress from last night.  The gliders have made good progress overnight and I believe we will be able to reach the way-points defined by the reachability envelop.  Of course there is variability in the envelops depending on the ocean forecast used and we should get valuable glider  information on which model envelop provided the best representation of the ocean experienced by the gliders.  Yesterday, the ensemble was spot on to the glider location.


Today I am going to be a biologist, once again showing my obsession with the Mid-Atlantic Bight winter bloom.  The bloom appears to be growing in intensity, and there appears to be increasing water column structure.  The phytoplankton appear to inceasingly found in the upper water column, earlier in the deployment the phytoplankton were distributed throughout the water column.  The intensity of the blooms appears to have increased as blooms have segregated int the surface waters.  One of the paradigms is that winter blooms are driven by light regulation.  Historical analysis suggests that the phytoplankton bloom in the winter when winds are low and the water column is somewhat stable allowing the cells to maintained in the upper water column where there is sufficient light to grow.  Looking at the temperature records from the gliders it appears that the water column shows some increased stability as indicated by the evolution of some moderate thermal structure.  The blooms appear to be associated with the changes thermal structure.  The salinity has not changed over the deployment period, with a nearshore slug of low salinity water.




Update on a cloudy Tuesday, but it is sunny in our heads….

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

We had a great telecon yesterday.  I look forward to another great call today! The decision was to conduct two experiments.  The first experiment which was championed by Pierre was to send one glider North to survey the Hudson Canyon which shows some interesting features. Pierre's plan and reasoning was laid out in some figures which I have posted below.





The second experiment was assess how different models impact the glider path planner.  Using the JPL tools we checked with each glider the projected paths over the course of day.  The potential envelops of the glider being able to reach a specific location varied with model, not surprising as all the models show some differences.  This reflects differences in the models, the assimilation schemes, the assimilation data used, etc.  We for each glider chose a track where the "reachability" envelops between the different models showed the greatest differences.  For the three gliders, this lead us to send two gliders to the south and send the third north to complement the glider surveying the Hudson canyon.  we have another satellite pass on the 12th, so today's discussion will need include some of that location choices.  Unfortunately today is very cloudy,,,, it better clear out before the Hyperion system arrives.

JPL executive summary 11/10/2009

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Southerly winds are observed Tuesday with relatively weak amplitude (less than 10 knots). NAM forecast indicates a transition to the Northerly and Northeasterly winds in the next two days with increasing amplitude reaching 20 knots by Thursday. Excellent SST images are obtained on Sunday. No microwave data (TMI+AMSRE) were available Sunday, confirming the important role of the geostationary satellite data in the blending process. SST comparisons consistently suggest a band of warm model bias at the shelf break, probably due to the mislocation of the SST front simulated by these relatively coarse resolution (~4-km) models. The HF radar data on Sunday show a northward flow on the southern shelf, and an offshore flow north of the NY harbor. While the northward flow on the shelf is reproduced by most models, the four models show major differences in simulating the offshore flow on the northern shelf. We have added the UDel glider (ud134) to the glider data vs model comparison. It is interesting to note that the COAWST model has the near perfect agreement with glider temperature on the shelf, but the largest discrepancy in temperature off-shore (~3 deg) and in glider salinity on the shelf (~1 psu).

JPL Executive Summary 11/9/2209

Monday, November 9th, 2009

Executive Summary of 11/09/2009

Very weak wind conditions are observed today. Near perfect NAM forecasts are seen when compared with buoy measurements. NAM indicates a continuous 2-day cycle in wind amplitude showing weak to moderate amplitude. Excellent SST images are obtained Saturday and Sunday. We are getting the new glider data from UDel, and the data should be online in the coming hours. We are developing a new weighting method to produce the multi-model ensemble, which should be available tomorrow Tuesday.

Starting the 2nd week of OSSE

Monday, November 9th, 2009

Hi all,

We kick-off the second week of OSSE activities with lots of great accomplishments in the first week, but now look to a final push for the next 7 days. In order to structure the efforts in the coming days, here is an outline of the “events” for the week and the planning of what we want to accomplish with the mobile assets.

We have flown the gliders together to demonstrate the ability to pull assets together. This behavior test complements the tests from the week before where we had 1) gliders fan out away from each other to cover the shelf, 2) gliders fly parallel to each other in cross shore mode, 3) coordinate spatial locations to provide potential cal/val for the Hyperion overflight on Saturday, and 4) demonstrate the ability to swarm by having assets come together. These gliders were complemented nicely with a multiple vehicle deployment last week having several AUVs fly a high resolved box in the nearshore environment. Here not only swarming but vehicle/vehicle communications was tested.

Science efforts have focused on the formation of the winter bloom and initial examination of the unique hydrographic signatures north near the Hudson canyon. There have been nearshore discussions about coastal jets, radiant heating and tides. What has been particularly gratifying is we have been conducting nice behavior test, several very use science data sets have been collected. The question is what is the best use of the assets in the coming week. I toss out candidates that I mined from last weeks dicussions. This first test will be conducted Monday through Wednesday, Wednesday we will have the community choose waypoint missions.

Technology tests:

1) Having the gliders together, choose a mission but have each glider directed by a different model. We have 4 gliders and 5 models + the ensemble. I am still uncertain about how much control we have on the blue hen. Eli can help?

2) Use the variance plots of the ensemble to redirect gliders to areas of maximum uncertainity. Latest plots suggest this offshore, more out in fishing areas, but there are regions on the shelf.

3) There still interesting features on Northern shelf associated with Hudson canyon. Do we fly one or several systems up there? This will be a little challenging given the shipping lanes, but I am open.

Given OOI is supposed to serve the wide range of oceanographers in a distributed manner. I picture the next few days being a test of how a marine IO (me this week) coordinates the activities of science users. You, the modelers are the users. So for today, let’s you guys drive, I will just make sure we fly in safe areas. So think of yourself as the teenager with the keys to the car. I will send our glider status in a few.