UNOLS now oversees research aircraft facilities for ocean science



In recognition of the increasing importance and value of aircraft as observational platforms in oceanographic research, the University National Oceanographic Laboratory System (UNOLS) has established the Scientific Committee for Oceanographic Aircraft Research (SCOAR). SCOAR aims to establish procedures for research aircraft that follow the present UNOLS practices for research vessel use, with the goal of making it understandable, and easy, and thus desirable, for oceanographic scientists to utilize research aircraft more.

For consistency with the operation of UNOLS ships, this will require UNOLS to designate appropriate research aircraft operating organizations to be National Oceanographic Aircraft Facilities (NOAFs), essentially like institutions that operate one or more UNOLS ships. UNOLS presently has one designated NOAF, the Center for Interdisciplinary Remotely Piloted Aircraft Studies (CIRPAS) at the Naval Postgraduate School, in Monterey, California.