2018 Drifter Tracks

Resolving transport pathways through New England's continental shelf waters and beyond

updated every two hours

See a GoogleMap of just this month's tracks.
See leaflet animation of all tracks.
See the latest quicker gif animation of tracks.
Download drifter construction manuals and lesson plans
Find out how to get involved with the project
See frequently asked questions
Predict where a drifter (deployed off New England) will go
To see this month's tracks overlaid on other fields (sst, models, etc), go to the MARACOOS site and click on "Drifter" layer.
See drifters and unmanned sailboats documented at NERACOOS
Read a description of the drifters themselves and how to use them.
Access the historical drifter data.
Blog about students deploying drifters with our MATE colleagues
Document a drifter finding
Read about drifters in the news
Get information on a related unmanned sailboat project
Plots of this year's tracks are linked in the table below.
Get raw statistics.
Check on your satellite fix use.
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Drifter tracks from in previous years:
2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017.

To get PYTHON processing routines, email James Manning for the latest versions.

To see information on individual clusters, click the links in the following chronological table

PI (report/blog) Deployers (deploy video) Date Deployed (animation) Dropsite (forecast) #units Science (googleearth) Status (googlemap) ID-Type of Unit (photo) Fate (photo)
Educational PassagesBaldwin2016 multiple places 10+educational underwayunmanned sailboats "Carolina Dreamer_2" still going
Cape Fear Community CollegeDegan27 Sep 2016 Gulf Stream2Marine Techunderwayunmanned sailboats SS Daniel went east and landed on Flores Azores in Oct 2017 while SS Lester Bell dilly dallied south, sailed through TS Jose in Sept 2017, and ...
Educational PassagesBaldwin Fall 2016 Multiple Places20educationunderwayunmanned sailboats North Atlantic Regatta: DC Eagle II, Jack the Cat, Velella velella still going in 2018
GOMIHalloran/FlahertyJaySpring/Summer 2017 GOM9educationunderwaysurface and drogued drifters 174420701 Kennebunk High took traditional path towards Georges bank;
175420701 Beverly High washed into the Nauset Marsh on the morning of 25 May and recovered by JiM & crew on 30 May;
175420702 Beverly High looped Mass Bay, headed back to the North Shore, and finally died off Cape Cod in June 2nd
175420703 drogued drifter got caught in Mass Bay eddy, beat up on the Graves rocks for a few days, and then brought into the dock by Dave Waller, the lighthouse keeper, on 31 May;
175420704 Salem Sound Club S surface drifter went in and out of Plymouth Harbor multiple times and apparently washed ashore north of Truro's Head of the Meadow Beach on 6 June, recovered by a couple on vacation, brought to Olivia at WBWS on June 11 and shut off by James;
176420701 Mellini Chen and Jake Williams Lowell_Univ unit ...;
176420702 Brian Smiths Betheham_NH unit circled the gulf, headed home in Sept 2017, and then finally came ahore near Cape St Marys in Nove Scotia at the end of November 2017?;
176420703 Paddy Cummings RVCS still going in 2018 mid-ocean;
176420704 Paddy Cummings RVCS;
178420708 NOCK Middle School with sails on wrong end of mast, taken out of water near Ptown in Sept 2017, brought to fishermans home in Marshfield, and ...;
Cape Fear Community CollegeDegan19 June 2017 Gulf Stream1Marine Techunderwayunmanned sailboats
WHOIHernandezR/V Bigelow11 July 2017 off Georges Bank3Bluefin Tunadonebamboo-framed star-shaped drogues 176400671 entrained in ring, flowed along shelfbreak in Sept, affected by Jose, and died in Gulf Stream in Dec 2017;
176400672 entrained in ring, took ride with GS and died beyond Azores in Feb 2018;
176400673 entrained in big GS ring but recovered drogueless by the Captain Katz on F/V Sea Angel from Blue harvest in Fairhaven fishing boat starting 2000Z on Aug 11th;
LEAPWilkins/Flaherty???13 July 2017 Mass Bay1educationunderwayIrina surface drifter 177420701 drifted SSW towards the mouth of Boston Harbor, body found ashore with no transmitter;
170420702 headed NE to Jeffries Ledge and then ...
Center for Student Coastal ResearchBuckleyMr.Paul Adams10 Aug 2017Mass Bay3marine debrisunderwayIrina surface drifters 177420705 landed on Martha's Vineyard and recoverd;
177420704 Gulf Stream to ..;
177420707 Gulf Stream to ...;
Thetford Vt ElementaryBradleyF/V RaiderIII 03 Oct 2017 off Cape Cod1educationunderwayIrina surface drifter 170420691 deployed by Billy Souza and
Gloucester Middle SchoolHiggins/DonnellyHiggins Jr Lobsterboat 14 Oct 2017 Mass Bay1marine debrisdoneIrina surface drifter 170420701 headed NE and then died west of Grand Banks in March 2018
Southern Maine Community CollegeTarbox/LongF/V Tenacious01 Nov 2017
28 Nov 2017
Off Southern Maine2educationdone Eddie surface drifters170430701 came ashore on Peaks Island Nov 7th after a wild run around Casco Bay;
170430702 deployed by Obey Spears on 28 Nov off F/V Tenacious and headed NE against prevailing wisdom but eventually came ashore on the Northeastern shore of the Bay of Fundy in Saint Croix Cove
Columbia River Maritime MuseumSandel et alNov 2017 Pacific Ocean10educationunderwayunmanned sailboats miniboats on both sides of the Pacific
Educational PassagesBaldwin/Stymiest 2018 Multiple Places20?educationunderwayunmanned sailboats
Gulf of Maine InstituteHalloran/Flaherty 04 Apr 2018
16 May2018
Mass Bay3educationunderwayIrina surface drifters184420701 did a week-long loop south of Gloucester and ended up on Goldwait Beach in Marblehead where Emily recovered it on 24 Apr;
185420704 may have come ashore the next morning on Pope Island rocks but then continued on to land on Littles Point rocks on 18 May
Stockton UniversityPfeiffer-HerbertBarnegat Bay NJ scalloper 17 Apr 2018 Mid-Atlantic Bight1educationunderwayIrina surface drifter entrained in Gulf Stream mid-May and took off to the east
Long Beach Island SchoolMcBridescalloper 27 Apr 2018 Mid-Atlantic Bight1educationunderwayIrina surface drifters
Salem Sound CoastwatchFlaherty 16 May 2018 Salem Sound1educationdoneIrina surface drifter185420704 may have come ashore the next morning on Pope's Island rocks but then continued on for a few days to land at Littles Point rocks near Swampscot on 18 May where Emily recovered it.
MassDMF/GOMI/SSCWFlaherty 2018 Mass Bay1shellfish closuresplannedIrina surface drifters
Seton Hall Prep SchoolSnyder 2018 Mid-Atlantic Bight3educationplannedIrina surface drifter
Great Lakes Environmental Research LabRuberg?? 2018 Great Lakes6HABsplannedEddie surface drifters?
US Navy Sea CadetsThiede 2018 Mid-Atlantic Bight?1educationplannedIrina surface drifter

Note: Most units are prepared by marine science students. The majority are standard "surface drifters" marking only the top 1-meter of the water column, but some units, as in the case of EP boats, track the wind and wave at the surface and some have subsurface drogues typically centered at 10m-15m below the surface. For details, call 508-495-4727 or email james.manning@noaa.gov.

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