A Change in Coral Reef Watch's Twice-weekly Global 50 km Product Suite
(1 February 2016)

Starting from 1 February 2016, Coral Reef Watch's twice-weekly 50 km satellite coral bleaching thermal stress monitoring products will be updated around 2:00 pm on Mondays and Thursdays (U.S. Eastern Time), about three hours later than the past.

This change is the result of a transition to using a new sea surface temperature (SST) analysis in our twice-weekly 50 km satellite coral bleaching thermal stress monitoring products. Our legacy 50 km satellite SST analysis that CRW has used to produce the twice-weekly 50 km products since 1997 will be discontinued in the coming months as it is officially replaced by NOAA/NESDIS' next-generation operational daily global 5 km Geo-polar Blended Night-only SST Analysis. This new twice-weekly 50 km SST analysis, named B50 SST (short for the Blended 50 km SST), is derived from the operational daily global 5 km Blended Night-only SST Analysis mentioned above, using an algorithm described in Heron et al. (2014).

Our next-generation daily, global 5-km coral bleaching thermal stress monitoring products based on the 5 km Geo-polar Blended Night-only SST Analysis became the primary products featured on our website (http://coralreegwatch.noaa.gov) as of May 2015. Given that the 5 km Blended Night-only SST Analysis data set currently has a very short time series (March 2013-present), we will continue providing access to the long time series provided by our 50 km products. CRW's 50 km legacy coral bleaching thermal stress monitoring products provide both long term historical (back to 1997) and near-real-time data. We will continue to make 50 km products available using the B50 SST.

The new B50 coral bleaching thermal stress monitoring products will be updated on Mondays using observations from the previous four days (Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday); and the B50 products updated on Thursdays use observations from the previous three days (Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday). This is consistent with the release and observation periods used for our operational 50 km products.

Please notice that while the B50 products will continue the 50 km product stream, there will be differences from CRW's legacy 50 km products which have been in service since 1997. Differences include a different SST analysis used as the data source and a different climatology. However, the thermal stress algorithm remains exactly the same. User precaution is advised when comparing 1997-2015 data to those from 2016 onwards.

 

Reference:

Heron, SF, Liu G, Rauenzahn JL, Christensen TRL, Skirving WJ, Burgess TFR, Eakin CM, Morgan JA (2014). Improvements to and Continuity of Operational Global Thermal Stress Monitoring for Coral Bleaching. J. Operational Oceanography 7(2): 3-11.
--- More details from the publisher.

 

 


Please send email to coralreefwatch@noaa.gov, should you have any questions.