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The Gulf of Maine ocean observing system (GoMOOS) was established in the summer of 2001 as a prototype real-time observing system that now includes eleven solar- powered buoys with physical and optical sensors, four shore- based long-range HF radar surface current systems, circulation and wave models, satellite observations, and hourly web delivery of data. The Gulf of Maine (GoM) is a harsh operational environment. Its winter storms pose severe challenges that include waves exceeding 10 m in height, and the build up of sea ice on buoy superstructure, solar panels, and sensors. In summer the productive waters of the GoM present severe biofouling problems that can affect the optical sensors. These periods of most difficult operations correspond to the periods of greatest data value, in terms of marine safety, search and rescue, and monitoring biological productivity.
Date of Conference: 17-19 March 2008