Offshore Waters


The offshore waters monitored by MARACOOS extend 200 miles off the coast to the edge of the US Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Data generated by MARACOOS partners improve the safety of millions in the Mid-Atlantic region by shortening Coast Guard search times, predicting and monitoring severe storms, and identifying areas where further study is needed.

Surface current data collected by MARACOOS High Frequency Radar are ingested into the Coast Guard’s Search and Rescue Optimal Planning System (SAROPS), a decision-support tool that uses ocean observations to predict the area where a lost vessel might be. SAROPS narrows search areas and helps the Coast Guard rescue people lost at sea more quickly. In 2018, MARACOOS collaborated on a Coast Guard study to examine how surface current data specifically impacts search and rescue operations.



MARACOOS-driven data also monitor the formation and tracks of active tropical cyclones and severe storms. These data are used by the National Hurricane Center to forecast and monitor tropical cyclones and are used in issuing advisories.

MARACOOS is proud to coordinate and develop robust ocean observing systems and data products that support the economic and safety needs of the millions of residents of the Mid-Atlantic region.