Public Lab Research note

Learning to search satellite imagery for thermally- or productivity- detectable ocean upwellings

by ronhuber | February 12, 2012 23:55 12 Feb 23:55 | #782 | #782

I'm seeking tips on searching satellite imagery for thermally- or productivity detectable upwellings generated in waters within the energy "footprint" of existing ocean windfarms.

Already I've gotten some great Public Laboratory advice and suggestions on the data that may be available and who can provide it. Thank you!

Some background information related to what we are seeking


Hi, Ron - I wanted to applaud your willingness to come back to the site/list and enumerate some of what you found out. Plus I was wondering what kind of measurements of primary production you're looking for -- i.e. could NDVI be used for high-res studies along these lines?

I don't think flying balloons near windmills is a great idea :-0 but i do wonder if NDVI regularly collected from a low-flying aircraft could be used to establish/measure production? Are you talking about productivity of algae, mainly?

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Whoops, what happened is that Maine shot itself in the foot TWICE in its efforts to stimulate development of offshore floating windpower in the Gulf of Maine, cancelling itself out for the foreseeable future. So no real driving need to study the impacts of these interesting floating deepwater windturbines, as regrettably,they won't be happening in the Gulf of Maine in the foreseeable future. As the University of Maine led DeepCwind Consortium sputtered along using federal seed money to try to develop a working prototype, Norwegian firm Statoil applied to build and operate its own floating offshore wind project off Maine, too. In fact the Norwegians came in under deadline to submit a complete proposal to the state - while the DeepCwind Consortium failed to do so. The Maine Public Utility Commission and Statoil had nearly finalized an agreement, when, under pressure from the Maine governor, the PUC ignored its own rules and REOPENED the request for proposals, to allow the DeepCwind project to apply despite missing the deadline by nearly a year. Seeing that UMaine was going to simply undercut their offer and "win" the competition, since it has been made public already, Statoil quit Maine and went elsewhere (Scotland, I think). Meanwhile, DeepCwind was failing to make a workable prototype, and as the deadline approached hastily cobbled together a miniprotype too small to safely take to the University's Ocean Wind test Center off Monhegan Island for trials.. So when the federal government made its awards for full funding of multiple prototypes, Maine 's toy windmill was considered inadequate and the sDeepCwind project was passed over for funding! So Maine has ended up with no ocean wind project, achieving nothing by its doubledealing with Statoil but ill will.

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