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The Integrated Approach and its Purpose

COSYNA was established with its sights on understanding and describing the environmental state and variability of coastal waters in the North Sea and the Arctic. COSYNA develops marine monitoring systems and methods for the current state of the coastal system and for generating state reconstructions and short-term forecasts. Understanding and describing coastal systems is of a high value, not only from a scienti¿c point of view, but also due to its societal value. One important motivation for COSYNA therefore is the continuous provision of near real-time and post-processed products, bridging the gap between operational oceanography and the various users of forecasts of the coastal waters state. COSYNA aims to provide data, informational products and knowledge tools to answer scientific questions at various time and length scales and to provide authorities, industry, and the public with tools to plan and manage routine tasks, respond to emergency situations and to evaluate trends. In order to serve this purpose, one of the distinguishing features of COSYNA is the integrated approach combining observations and numerical modelling.

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Components of the Integrated Approach

The observations comprise a variety of in situ techniques as well as remote sensing from shore by radar and from space by satellite. At the core of the COSYNA observations is a standard package of sensors mounted on stationary and mobile platforms. Key physical, sedimentary, geochemical and biological parameters are observed at high temporal resolution in the water column and the upper and lower boundary layers. COSYNA’s modelling part consists of structured and unstructured nested models with different grid sizes for hydrography (salinity, waves, currents), for suspended matter and for biogeochemical and ecosystem processes. By using sophisticated data assimilation procedures, observational data are integrated into models in order to close the spatial and temporal gaps of the observations and to improve the reliability of now-casts and short-term forecasts.

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Bridging the Gap to Users

One important motivation for COSYNA is the continuous provision of near real-time and post-processed products, bridging the gap between operational oceanography and the various users of forecasts of the marine state. With its integrated approach, the COSYNA automated observing and modelling system is geared towards high flexibility and can be used on a variety of scales and problems that are of scientific or societal interest. The COSYNA data products are run on a pre-operational system, i.e., they are not experimental but developed towards a later operational use. The data and plots are available through a data portal www.cosyna.de. To further reach out to stakeholders and the wider community an app has been developed for the most common platforms.

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