The accurate monitoring of surface transport, which is inherently chaotic and depends on the details of the surface velocity field at several scales, is key for the effective integrated management of coastal areas, where many human activities concentrate. This has been the driver for the growth of coastal observatories along the global ocean coasts. Among the different measuring systems, coastal High Frequency Radar (HFR) is the unique technology that offers the means to map ocean surface currents over wide areas (reaching distance from the coast of over 200km) with high spatial (a few kms or higher) and temporal resolution (hourly or higher). Consequently, the European HFR systems are playing an increasing role in the overall operational oceanography marine services. Their inclusion into the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service (CMEMS) is crucial to ensure the improved management of several related key issues as Marine Safety, Marine Resources, Coastal and Marine Environment, Weather, Climate and Seasonal Forecast.
In this context, INCREASE has set the necessary developments towards the integration of the existing European HFR operational systems into CMEMS, following four main objectives:
- Provide HFR quality controlled real-time surface currents and key derived products;
- Set the basis for the management of historical data and methodologies for advanced delayed mode quality-control techniques;
- Boost the use of HFR data for improving CMEMS numerical modelling systems;
- Enable an HFR European operational node to ensure the link with operational CMEMS.
Thanks to INCREASE outputs, HFRs are now one of the new observing platforms for the Operational Phase 2 of CMEMS In Situ TAC (INSTAC2). Next steps in the implementation of HFR data in the INSTAC catalog will be to implement the standardization defined in JERICO-NEXT (WP5) and the operational delivery of HFR total data (to be included in CMEMS v5 catalog in 2019) and radial data (to be included in CMEMS v6 catalog in 2020) and to work on the reprocessing and the standardized delivery of historical radial and total data (to be included in CMEMS v7 catalog in 2021).