To give you the best possible experience, this site uses cookies. Continuing to use this site means you agree
to our use of cookies. If you'd like to learn more about the cookies we use please find out more

Session 2.3 Abstracts

Symposium home | Session 2 | Session 3 | Session 4 | Abstracts by Author |


2.3 Overview of downstream applications & services

Session conveners: Ed Harrison, Mike Bell and Hui Wang

The table below lists all abstracts for Session 2.3 by author. To read the full abstract click on the title-link.

The unique reference number (ref. no.) relates to the abstract submission process and must be used in any communications with the organisers.

All abstracts from session 2.3 are available for download - pdf.

 Ref.NoPrimary AuthorAffiliationCountryAbstract titlePoster pdfs
S2.3-01Bell, MikeMet OfficeUKApplications of operational oceanography within the UKPoster-pdf

S2.3-02Hackett, BruceNERSCNorwayUse of MyOcean/GODAE data products in downstream services in NorwayPoster-pdf

S2.3-03Kawamura, HideyukiMRI-JMAJapanNumerical experiments on dispersion of radionuclides in the ocean released from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant - An application of GOV product to marine environmental emergency responses - 
S2.3-04Lesser, GilesOMC InternationalAustraliaForecasting Under-keel Clearance at the Columbia River Bar Poster-pdf

S2.3-05Martins, RenatoREMO-UFBABrazilApplications of REMO ocean forecasts and simulations in the oil industry in BrazilPoster-pdf

S2.3-06Derval, CMercator OceanFranceMercator Ocean service: focus on downstream applications 


ID 2.3-01

Applications of operational oceanography within the UK

Michael J. Bell1, Nick Ashton1, Rosa Barciela1, Paul Coverdale2, Adrian Hines1, Jon Rees3 , Robin Stephens4, Derrick Swannick1, Katherine Twigg1,

1 Met Office, Exeter, UK

2 Royal Navy, Portsmouth, UK

3 Cefas, Lowestoft, UK



The FOAM ocean forecasting system and the OSTIA SST analysis system are being used by the Royal Navy to support a wide range of operations and by Cefas to drive predictions of spill drift and dispersion. Several weather forecast centres use the OSTIA analyses as a lower boundary condition and the Met Office’s seasonal forecasts are initialised using the FOAM analyses. Further applications of the FOAM system that are being explored include support for marine policy, support for the oil & gas industry and storm surge prediction. This poster will provide some details about these applications and discuss the impact of the predictions.


ID 2.3-02

Use of MyOcean/GODAE data products in downstream services in Norway

Bruce Hackett1, Jon Bergh2, Laurent Bertino2, Nils M. Kristensen1, Lars Petter Røed1, Henning Wehde 3

1 MET Norway, Oslo, Norway

2 NERSC, Bergen, Norway

3 IMR, Bergen, Norway


Regional oceanographic services in Norway are focused on the North Sea, Nordic Seas and the Arctic Ocean. Regional forecasting services are making increasing use of GODAE Ocean View products as outer boundary conditions. Two examples of the use of GODAE Ocean View products for downscaling are given. The public ocean forecasting system for national waters run at MET Norway utilizes FOAM data obtained from the UK Met Office ( http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/research/weather/ocean-forecasting). The regional system consists of a coupled ocean-ice model using the ROMS code and a simple assimilation scheme for SST and sea ice concentration. Data from the regional system are provided freely to the public (www.yr.no/hav_og_kyst, http://thredds.met.no/thredds/fou-hi/fou-hi.html) and are used to force MET Norway's emergency forecasting systems for oil spill fate, drifting objects and ship drift. At NERSC, a high-resolution forecasting system for the Barents Sea utilizes data from TOPAZ, obtained from MyOcean (see www.myocean.eu). This regional system uses the HYCOM code with a coupled ice model and a novel wave-in-ice module. It is aimed at supporting the offshore industry operating in ice-infested waters.

Data from the TOPAZ system are also being accessed by the MET Norway Ice Charting Service (http://polarview.met.no/ ), initially to aid in the subjective ice charting process, but prospectively as input to high-resolution ice forecasting.

Observational data – both satellite and in situ - delivered by MyOcean are used by downstream providers to give value-added information to end-users on the state of Norwegian waters. The aforementioned Ice Charting Service is one example. Another is data-based advisory services provided by IMR to the fisheries community.


ID 2.3-03

Numerical experiments on dispersion of radionuclides in the ocean released from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant

- An application of GOV product to marine environmental emergency responses -

H. Kawamura1, T. Kobayashi1, A. Furuno1, N. Usui2, M. Kamachi2

1 Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) , Ibaraki , Japan

2 Meteorological Research Institute (MRI), Japan Meteorological Agency, Ibaraki, Japan


Numerical experiments on oceanic 137Cs dispersion were intensively conducted in order to assess an effect on the North Pacific, focusing on long-term variation of 137Cs concentration after the Fukushima disaster occurred in March, 2011. The 137Cs release amount into the ocean was estimated making use of oceanic monitoring data, whereas that into the atmosphere was calculated by atmospheric dispersion simulation. The numerical experiments were carried out using the oceanic dispersion model SEA-GEARN developed by JAEA and the three-dimensional variational data assimilation system MOVE-NP and MOVE-WNP (GOV Japan National System). The system enabled us to clarify a time series of 137Cs concentration in the North Pacific. It was suggested that main radioactive cesium clouds reached the central part of the North Pacific exceeding the 170th meridian West one year later after the Fukushima disaster. The radioactive cesium had been efficiently diluted by meso-scale eddies along the Kuroshio Extension regime since the Fukushima disaster, declining the concentration below pre-Fukushima background value in the wide area within the North Pacific one year later after the Fukushima disaster.


ID 2.3-04


Forecasting Under-keel Clearance

At the Columbia River Bar

Dr. G.R. Lesser1, Capt. D.Jordan2

1 OMC International, Melbourne, Australia

2 Columbia River Bar Pilots, Astoria, USA


For more than 20 years OMC International have been providing client ports with advice on optimal management of under-keel clearance for visiting large commercial vessels. During this period, over 100,000 vessels have sailed under advice provided by OMC’s operational Dynamic Under-keel Clearance (DUKC ®) systems. This has directly enabled clients to safely ship several BILLION dollars of extra cargo compared to their previous practice of using simple rule-of-thumb under-keel clearance rules. DUKC® systems make use of carefully tailored site-specific forecasts of tidal water levels and ocean swell conditions along port entrance channels and use them to perform detailed numerical modeling of resulting vessel motions. Combined with detailed models of channel bathymetry, DUKC® systems can then provide best-available forecasts of under-keel clearance.

In recent years OMC has been striving to extract maximum value from the increasingly available and valuable results of operational oceanography. A recent example is the establishment of a demonstration Dynamic Under-keel Clearance (DUKC®) system for the Columbia River Bar Pilots (OR, USA). The Columbia River Bar DUKC® system utilizes forecast river levels produced by the NOAA/Port of Portland “LoadMax” system, forecast tidal current, water surface gradients, and water density produced by the NOAA CREOFS operational three-dimensional hydrodynamic model of the Columbia River estuary, and near real-time wave observations from CDIP wave buoys located near the Columbia River Bar. Once operational wave forecasts for the Columbia River Bar become available these will also be used by the system. These best-available forecasts are combined with carefully calibrated and validated ship motion modeling and uncertainty estimates to provide the Columbia River Bar pilots with operational advice on the likelihood of a planned vessel transit touching the bottom of the channel. If required, the Columbia River Bar Pilots can reschedule high risk transits to times of higher water or more favorable swell conditions, or consider other actions that may reduce vessel motion and increase under-keel clearance.

The challenges of incorporating complex modeling products into operational aids to navigation are not inconsiderable as model quality must be carefully evaluated and monitored and modeling uncertainties must be communicated in a simple manner to mariners who need to weigh the modeling advice when making operational decisions. OMC’s DUKC® system has a proven track record of extracting considerable value from available forecasts; however improving integration with external forecasts and evaluation and communication of modeling uncertainty will remain critical challenges for operational DUKC ® systems for the foreseeable future.


ID 2.3-05

Applications of REMO ocean forecasts and simulations in the oil industry in Brazil

R.P. Martins1, M. Andrioni1, J.A.M. Lima1, C.A.S. Tanajura2, A.M. Paiva3

1 PETROBRAS Research & Development Center, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

2 Federal University of Bahia, Salvador, Brazil

3 Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


Petrobras, the largest Brazilian oil company, as many other energy companies, works extensively exploiting oil in oceanic sedimentary basins. It is a heavy user of oceanographic information, such as in situ data, remote sensing fields, and numerical ocean model simulations and forecasts. Environmental impact assessment studies and offshore engineering projects usually make use of model simulations and hindcasts. Ocean forecasts provide key information for maritime activities (e.g. drilling) and emergency actions, such as oil contingency response and search and rescue operations.

The Oceanographic Modeling and Observation Network (REMO) is a joint research and development project of Petrobras, Brazilian universities (UFRJ, UFBA, FURG and USP) and the Brazilian Navy. It started to produce operational daily ocean forecasts in February 2010 and in February 2012 the system was updated. Today the system is based on HYCOM with 1/4o, 1/12° and 1/24o of horizontal resolution for the entire Atlantic Ocean, for the Atlantic Metarea V and for the Southwestern Atlantic west of 32oW between 12°S and 35°S, respectively. Petrobras uses these forecasts together with all ocean data available to insure safer operations. The current fields from the 3-day forecasts are used daily by the team responsible for oil contingency to plan response activities. Drilling activities are also planned with the aid of current forecasts, so that they can take into account the possibility of currents exceeding an operation threshold. This is particularly relevant in Brazilian northern continental margin, where the North Brazil Current usually reaches more than 1.5 m/s.

The modeling system developed by REMO was also used to build a 10-year simulation to be applied in environmental impact assessment and off-shore structure design. The time series of the current field was used as input for oil spill stochastic modeling to assess the probability of oil reaching the shore, as illustrated in Figure. This is a regular requirement of the Brazilian Environmental Agency to issue installation and operation licenses. Improvements on the mesoscale current forecasts and simulations will certainly lead to safer operation.


Figure 1: Example of probabilistic contours from stochastic oil spill modeling using REMO 1/24° model hindcasts.


ID 2.3-06

Mercator Ocean service: focus on downstream applications

C. Derval1, V. Landes1, G. Chabot1, C. Estournel2, P. Marsaleix2, F. Dell'Armico3, F. Roullier4, X. Chaze5

1 Mercator Ocean
2Laboratoire Aérologie OMP
3 Aquarium La Rochelle
4Tara Ocean LOV
5Mines Paris-Tech



Mercator Ocean is the French Ocean Monitoring and Forecasting Centre. Owned by public institutions (Météo-France, SHOM, Ifremer, CNRS, IRD), Mercator Ocean is a non-profit company, based in Toulouse, employing a team of ~ 50 persons, entirely devoted to ocean monitoring and forecasting, and tasked by French authorities to take an active part in the Copernicus marine implementation and operation. Mercator Ocean delivers worldwide marine core services based on its high resolution global ocean and European seas capacity for real time monitoring and forecasting, its work on ocean multi-year reanalyses and the strong expertise of its oceanographers. Eddy-resolving ocean modelling, multi-data assimilation, product quality assessment, multi-year variability, expertise on physical ocean, ice and biogeochemistry. Over the last 15 years, Mercator Ocean has been playing a leading role in operational oceanography at international level and European level, and is since 2009 the coordinator of the COPERNICUS marine monitoring project MyOcean. The specificity of the Mercator Ocean service is to provide specific services. Examples of the use of Mercator Ocean products in several areas of benefits are presented on the poster.