Surface Currents - CODAR

Coastal Ocean Dynamics Applications Radar, or CODAR, is a land based HF Radar system used for measuring sea surface current. Measurements can be made at long range, across wide areas, using a single instrument. CODAR-derived maps of surface currents are used in marine operations and in support of modelling and analysis activities. Under favorable wave conditions, the array is capable of measuring surface currents at a spatial resolution of ~12 km. The Northeast region is enhanced by CODAR stations in the Gulf of Maine and Long Island Sound.

View the latest CODAR measurements in the NERACOOS Region and nationwide at this link.

Gulf of Maine

To measure surface currents in the Gulf of Maine, The University of Maine maintained existing CODAR stations at three sites:

  • Southwest Nova Scotia, between NERACOOS GOM buoys I and F
  • Southern Maine, between NERACOOS GOM buoys B and C
  • In addition, UMaine brought online a new CODAR station at Grand Manan Island, north of GoMOOS buoy I.

Increased CODAR coverage in the Gulf of Maine allows scientists to understand the flow the Eastern Maine Coastal Current (EMCC). Expansion of the radar array to Grand Manan will allow good coverage of the EMCC and the extent to which it either veers offshore or flows through to the Western Maine Coastal Current (WMCC) throughout the year. This issue is of particular importance during the spring-summer HAB season, because the core of the EMCC is characteristically laden with Alexandrium fundyense, while the WMCC is not, so that the pathways of the EMCC are of vital importance from the PSP point of view. Understanding these surface currents is also critical for applications such as search and rescue, prediction of pollutant transport, and determining the delivery of larvae of commercially important species, including lobster and scallops, to the western Gulf.

Long Island Sound

The University of Connecticut maintains, operates and distributes data from 5 high-frequency (HF) LISICOS CODARradar surface current measuring systems (CODAR). This activity is supported by NOAA through funding of the Middle Atlantic Regional Coastal Ocean Observing System - MARCOOS.



CODAR Partners:

University of Maine CODAR Page