One of the biggest challenges with hydrographic surveying is the relationship between the ellipsoid and chart datum in the coastal environment. With the continuing development of high-accuracy GNSS surveying methods, the ability to measure the vertical component with the required accuracy and precision to facilitate high accuracy ellipsoidal surveys is now a reality. To allow for the reduction of this data to chart datum a new separation model is required to augment traditional tidal models. In Australia, this model will be the AUSHYDROID and is expected to support nearshore, coastal and offshore ellipsoidal surveying within the Australian region and will help to support the blue economy into the future. To support the development of this model an Intergovernmental Committee on Surveying and Mapping (ICSM) Working Group has been established and is looking for interested parties to join the group. Further information on AUSHYDROID and the working group can be found on the ICSM website at http://icsm.gov.au/what-we-do/aushydroid.
Seabed 2030 is a collaborative project between the Nippon Foundation and the General Bathymetric Chart of the Oceans (GEBCO). The project aims to bring together all available bathymetric data to produce the definitive map of the world ocean floor by the year 2030, and make this data available to all. It builds on more than 100 years of GEBCO’s history of global seafloor mapping. Seabed 2030 consist of four Regional Centers and a Global Center. The Global Center is responsible for producing and delivering global GEBCO products. The Regional Centers champion mapping activities, assemble and compile bathymetric information, and collaborate with existing mapping initiatives within their regions. Three of the four Regional Centers overlap Australian waters: Southern Ocean, South and West Pacific Ocean, and Atlantic and Indian Oceans.
NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub
The Marine Biodiversity Hub within the Australian Government's National Environmental Science Program (NESP) was developed to provide scientific information to support evidence-based decision making about marine species, marine protected areas, and marine environment specific threats and pressures. Currently the Marine Biodiversity Hub is carrying out Project D2 which consists of creating a series of field manuals and standard operating procedures for the collection and analysis of environmental monitoring data, including multibeam data. Many of these methodologies can be more broadly applied to other Australian Government priorities.
The Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS) is a national collaborative research infrastructure, supported by Australian Government. It is operated by a consortium of institutions as an unincorporated joint venture, with the University of Tasmania as Lead Agent. IMOS undertakes systematic and sustained observing of Australia's marine estate through a portfolio of platform-based Facilities, planning its operations through internationally peer-reviewed science processes. All IMOS data is openly accessible by the marine and climate science community, international collaborators, and other stakeholders and users through the Australian Ocean Data Network (AODN). The AODN provides an interoperable online network of marine and climate data resources. The marine data collections published in the AODN Portal are wide-ranging, and all data collections are open and freely available to the public. The AODN not only encompasses data and metadata from IMOS, but also from many other organisations and individual members of the Australian, New Zealand and Pacific marine research community.
HydroScheme Industry Partnership Program (HIPP)
The HIPP is a program managed by the Australian Hydrographic Office to outsource the collection of bathymetric data to enhance safety of navigation within the Australian Charting Area. The program seeks to partner with industry to improve Australia’s knowledge of the maritime domain and allow the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) to concentrate on the military survey function. The program commences in 2020 and will expand in scope as it matures enabling greater research, understanding and management of our maritime environment.
Marine National Facility
The Marine National Facility is hosted by CSIRO on behalf of the nation. It operates the research vessel Investigator, which is open to Australian researchers and their international partners. The Facility provides access to its holdings of bathymetry data from around Australia.
The DueSouth database fosters collaboration for upcoming Southern Ocean and Antarctic research projects by allowing users to upload, share and coordinate field plans and is supported by the Southern Ocean Observing System and the Department of Environment and Energy Australian Antarctic Division. The database holds multi-disciplinary, multi-national information about planned projects. The portal can be used to find out other projects that may be in close proximity, or expeditions working on similar problems in other parts of the Southern Ocean and Antarctic waters.
In a nation first, Seamap Australia brings together all available marine survey data of sea floor habitats to create a continental-scale, consistent, marine habitat mapping service. Knowing the structure and biology of the sea floor is a critical factor influencing our understanding of coastal erosion, storm surge impact, tsunami risk, distribution of marine habitats, accounting of marine assets such as mineral resources and fisheries, and of course safe navigation.
If you wish to contribute to the Seamap Australia spatial data layer please submit your marine habitat information to the IMAS data portal and tag your entry with 'Seamap Australia'. This will assist us in harvesting your contribution into the annual release of a nationally consistent benthic habitat spatial layer.
National Marine Science Committee
The National Marine Science Committee is an advisory body focused on promoting the nexus between high quality marine science and growth of Australia's blue economy.
The Committee provides a distinctive mechanism for co-ordination and information sharing between research institutions, universities, Australian Government departments, State/Territory Governments and the broader Australian marine science community.
The Committee is the means by which this highly interdisciplinary, geographically dispersed community comes together to provide scientifically-robust, user-relevant advice on marine issues of national significance to Australia.