The Future of Ocean Observing in the Northeast

How you access ocean observing data in the Gulf of Maine has changed. The website was retired on April 18th, 2012, but we are committed to continue bringing you the high quality data and services you depend on without interruption during the transition and beyond. As is retired, NERACOOS and GMRI are stepping up to provide a seamless service to users seeking data from the Gulf of Maine. Here are some important facts you should know:

Q: Why did this happen?

A: Two important events happened over the last two years. The first was the development of a new, larger ocean observing system for the the entire Northeast region as a response to a new funding model from NOAA. The Northeast Regional Association for Coastal and Ocean Observing (NERACOOS) is now the regional ocean observing system in the Northeast and is the central location to access ocean observing data. NERACOOS also continues to fund the buoys collecting data in the Gulf of Maine.

Secondly, the organization GoMOOS has merged with the Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI). Some of the employees of GoMOOS, specifically the data management and web development staff, are now employees of GMRI, and are known as the Ocean Data Products Group. This group continues to provide the data management and web development services for NERACOOS as well as GMRI.

If you'd like to know more, click here for a brief history of GoMOOS and ocean observing in the northeast.

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Q: What has changed?

A: Very little except where you go to get your information!When retired, NERACOOS and GMRI stepped up to provide a seamless service to users seeking data from the Gulf of Maine. Additionally:


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Q: When did this happen?

A: Over the last few months, we changed the look and feel of the website and introduced you to the organizations that continue to be involved and support ocean observing in the northeast (Gulf of Maine Research Institute, NERACOOS, The University of Maine). On April 18th,2012, the domain was retired. Information about what former GoMOOS products can be found on either or has been provided to users arriving at the website. This information can also be found here and here.

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Q: Who can I talk to for more information?

A: We always want to hear from our users about how we can improve the website and services. You can send a message via our Feedback link. Or if you have a question specific to one of the organizations mentioned earlier, the contact information follows:

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Organization Contacts:


The Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems is a component of the national Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS), spanning coastal waters from the Canadian Maritime Provinces to the New York Bight. NERACOOS provides weather and ocean data to fishers and commercial shippers determining if conditions are safe for passage and to emergency managers issuing storm warnings. NERACOOS is also advancing efforts to use these data for water quality monitoring, harmful algal bloom predictions and warnings, and coastal flooding and erosion forecasting systems.
Contact: Ru Morrison


Gulf of Maine Research Institute

As one of the region’s leading research institutions, GMRI advances sustainable uses of marine resources and nurtures science literacy through a fusion of science, education and community programs. GMRI’s lab on the waterfront in Portland houses an international team of scientists working to fill key information gaps about commercial fish species, critical and sensitive habitats, fishing practices and gear technology, and economic decision making. The Ocean Data Products Group (formerly the GoMOOS IT and Product Development team) continues to provide support for data management and communications and product development for NERACOOS, as well as GMRI efforts. For more information on the GMRI Ocean Data Products team, visit our website:
Website: -
Contact: Riley Young Morse -


University of Maine Physical Oceanography Group

UMainePhOG develops and operates real-time ocean observing systems. At the present time, they run the Gulf of Maine Buoy Array as part of the Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS) and are starting the real-time buoy array of the Caribbean Integrated Coastal Ocean Observing System (CariCOOS). The Physical Oceanography Group (PhOG) designs and builds real-time data buoy systems, including the data logger/controller and electronic systems.
Website: -
Contact: Neal Pettigrew -


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A Brief History of Ocean Observing in the Northeast

GoMOOS was founded in 1999 as a pilot for the concept of a national integrated ocean observing system, now known as the US Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS). The pilot effort was enormously successful; producing a cutting-edge system for collecting environmental data through a network of buoys in the Gulf of Maine.

The GoMOOS team developed innovative tools and web products to make this data more available to the end user community through the website; a known, trusted utility for accessing real-time data in the Gulf of Maine.

Federal funding shortfalls in 2008 and 2009 necessitated the removal of some of the key GoMOOS buoys. Efforts were made to preserve the core of the buoy system in order to preserve the long-term data sets from the Gulf of Maine critical for understanding complex scientific issues such as climate change.

Federal funding for the NOAA IOOS program now flows through the Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS), providing the resources necessary to keep the Gulf of Maine buoys in the water. NERACOOS is one of 11 regional associations in the United States.

In late 2009, GoMOOS became part of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, effectively merging the program staff located in Portland with GMRI.


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