National ocean partnership project advances real-time coastal ocean forecasting


  • Jean Thiebaux,

    1. National Centers for Environmental Prediction, 5200 Auth Rd.,Camp Springs, Md., 20746 USA
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  • Bert Katz,

  • John Kelley,

  • Laurence Breaker,

  • Bhavani Balasubramaniyan


A 1999–2000 National Ocean Partnership Project (NOPP) has demonstrated highly accurate predictions of ocean temperatures, currents, and surface elevation through a model that integrates the state of the ocean to routinely produce real-time nowcasts and forecasts. The success is attributed to a new technology for model-assimilation of satellite-derived surface observations with observations from in situ equipment.

Because the Chesapeake Bay and the northwestern Atlantic boarding the east coast of the United States is an area of intense ocean harvest, recreational boating, and major shipping —activities that depend on near-term prediction of near-surface conditions of the waters off the eastern coast—it served as the test-bed for the “Coastal Marine Demonstration Project”