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Development of the Lunenburg Bay Coastal Observatory: a practical guide to operational oceanography
Cullen, J. J.
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Since June 2002, a coastal observation and prediction system has been operated in Lunenburg Bay, Nova Scotia. The Marine Environmental Prediction System (MEPS-Bay) observatory uses a network of instruments to measure meteorological variables and physical, optical and acoustic properties of the water column at several sites, supported by an intensive field program for maintenance and ground-truthing. MEPS-Bay provides data in near-real time to an access and visualization system in support of a modeling effort which will provide interdisciplinary ocean forecasts during the 2007 field season. Many challenges have been addressed during development of this multidisciplinary observing system, and the experience provides useful guidance in the design of operational systems in the future. We review the intricate paths of the data from its various sources to end-users and the efforts needed to maintain an accurate and reliable system. The advantages of automated measurements and their reliance on maintenance and ground-truthing are discussed as well the inherent importance of managers and well-trained technical experts. We conclude that an important product of MEPS-Bay is a clear understanding of what it will take to establish an operational interdisciplinary coastal observatory.
Kirchhoff, SY, , and J. J. Cullen. "Development of the Lunenburg Bay Coastal Observatory: a practical guide to operational oceanography." CMOS Congress 2007 - Air, Ocean, Earth and Ice on the Rock, St. Johns, Newfoundland and Labrador, May 28 - June 1, 2007.