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All forms of oceanographic data analysis (including frequency domain, wavelet, and error analyses), hydrodynamic modelling, support for Environmental Impact Assessment reports, and tracking just about anything carried along by ocean currents.

My preferred tools these days are the ROMS, ATRANS, and most recently, OpenDrift. ROMS stands for Regional Ocean Modelling System. ATRANS stands for Austides TRANSport, which is our version of LTRANS, the Lagrangian particle tracking package, which we translated from Fortran to Matlab. OpenDrift is a python language particle tracking package, with significant extensions to improve accuracy when tracking microplastics, oil, and sediment. I have set up OpenDrift to enable me to forecast within minutes the location of any drifting object or pollutant, several days into the future, anywhere in the global ocean, at any depth. The forecast uses multiple global models, such as HYCOM, CMEMS Mercator Ocean, and OceanMAPS, and incorporates tidal currents. Of course, we can also use GridBuilder to help us set up and run local ROMS models nested within the global model, but this takes longer.

My long-time interest in tidal analysis and prediction led to the development of ATtide. The original version was designed under contract to a national tidal/hydrographic agency, so it contains a full bureau-quality analysis and prediction package, for over 100 harmonics and for time series of arbitrary duration. Since then we have added a number of unique features, such as maps of local tidal amplitude, ellipses, currents, or phase, and the ability to create an instant tidal prediction for any offshore location, based on a local or global tide model or interpolated from local tide gauges. ATtide is not an “off-the-shelf” product. It is customised to individual requirements. The default values, regional tidal model harmonics, and even the artwork and logos are tailored to the customer. Its unique design combined with a handy point and click graphic interface make it easy to learn and use. The ability to get a tidal prediction for an offshore site – having chosen the site coordinates, either by clicking on a nautical chart (geotiff), by reading from a gps device or NMEA file, or by manual entry of coordinates – means that in this respect, ATtide can be used as a simplified substitute for sophisticated hydrographic software such as HYPACK.