Site Help

Forecast Regions Forecast Loops Site Help Forecast Help System Information

Welcome to the Bluelink OceanMAPS forecast site. The Ocean forecast maps have been prepared using the Bureau's ocean model (OceanMAPS) on a grid size approximately 10 km by 10 km.

Navigating through this site is done with the navigation bar above.

  • Forecast Regions - The areas that OceanMAPS provides forecasts for
  • Forecast Loops - The loops and forecast images (NB: You must select a Forecast Region first)
  • Site Help - This page
  • Forecast Help - A description of terms used in the Forecasts.

To use this site

Ocean RegionsTo use this site you must first select a Forecast Region. There are three groups of Regions, corresponding to Tropical, Mid, and High Latitudes.

Select the 'Forecast Regions' tab and click on the map in order to find a specific forecast area. You can return to this map at any time by selecting the tab, or by using the 'Forecast Regions' link at the base of each Forecast page.

Selecting a region will take you to the Forecast Loops Page:

Forecast Loops Page

The Forecasts at the top are Temperature, Temperature and Currents, Sea Level Anomaly, Sea Level Anomaly and Currents, and Sea Surface Salinity. To learn more about these forecasts, see the Forecast help page. You may page between them by selecting them.

Image Explanation

The colour bar down the right hand side indicates either the sea surface temperature range in Degrees Celsius, the sea surface height anomaly in Metres, the sea surface salinity in Practical Salinity Units or speed of surface currents in Knots.

Velocity of Surface Currents

The arrows on the maps show both the speed and direction the surface currents are moving towards. The variable length arrows show the distance a parcel of water would travel in 12 hours. These are point values, not true trajectories. Where there are no arrows, the current speed is less than 0.2 knots. On the map with Currents only, speeds are coloured in knots using the scale on the right hand side.

Why is there a white strip along the coastline on maps?

Along the coastline, a white strip of varying thickness is noticeable on forecast maps. This white strip indicates that no forecast data (e.g. no sea temperature) is available for these areas.
This is because the model can't produce good forecasts for coastal and shallow water areas where the depth is less than 15m.
In some coastal regions with a small gradient in bathymetry out from the coast, this leads to a greater thickness in the white strip.

Sea Temperature

Links to ocean temperature maps for the Sea Surface and Subsurface. Daily, weekly and monthly periods covering Australia, nearby regions and the globe.