In January, the OOI Operations Manager, Thomas Wims, attended the two-day US Underwater Glider Workshop at the INFINITY Space Center in Mississippi, hosted by the Interagency ocean Observation Committee (IOOC). Over 90 people were in attendance from approximately 40 organizations representing universities, federal government agencies, nonprofits, industry, and the US Navy.
The focus of the workshop was to facilitate the sharing of best practices of glider operations across programs. Most programs in attendance had three or fewer gliders. This meeting provided a key avenue for these smaller groups to seek guidance from industry as well as organizations with larger fleets, like the US Navy, the OOI, and Rutgers University.
“With the second largest glider fleet in the nation, we were thrilled to be asked to come to the table during this workshop,”says Thomas Wims, OOI Operations Manager. “It is important to share what we know and what we have learned over the last several years of deploying and maintaining our glider fleet. A key element of the OOI is to foster collaborations, share best practices, and provide access to data.”
The OOI has 64 total gliders in its fleet, with up to 32 deployed at any time. These gliders are located at the two Coastal Arrays as well as at the four high latitude, open ocean sites of the Global Arrays. More information on OOI Gliders, can be found on the OOI Website.
One of the take homes from the workshop was the need to share more glider data across organizations, to break down the silos of data collected and stored at individual organizations. Participants discussed how critical it is to share data across similar regions, gaining a broader view of the water environments. OOI glider data are currently publicly available through the OOI Data Portal, as well a part of the growing Glider DAC resource collated by the Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS).