The U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System is designed to be responsive to a broad range of users. U.S. IOOS provides for the interoperable exchange of ocean observing data among data collectors, data providers, data managers and data users. As a system, U.S. IOOS is an adaptive, federated network of ocean observations, data management and communications and modeling and analysis capabilities. It is designed to support the following seven societal goals:
Assessments of marine and estuarine systems, and the prediction of changes in them, depend on an observing system that provides data in user demanded forms and rates. Effectively linking user needs to measurements requires a two-way flow of data among three essential subsystems, or the “end-to-end” system: (1) observing and data telemetry, (2) DMAC, and (3) data analysis and modeling.
To achieve this vision, development of the U.S. IOOS must adhere to the following principles:
- Enable user groups from both private and public sectors to achieve their missions and goals more effectively;
- Develop the system with guidance, from both data providers and users and from public and private sectors, that is based on sound science and encompasses a continuum of research to operational activities;
- Judiciously integrate existing assets that address the seven societal goals and regional priorities;
- Improve the IOOS by enhancing and supplementing the initial system selectively over time;
- Routinely, reliably, and continuously serve data and information for multiple applications that provide social and economic benefits both to the nation and to a broad spectrum of users from public and private sectors that use, depend on, manage, or study marine and estuarine environments and the natural resources within them;
- Openly and fully share data and information produced at the public expense in a timely manner at no more than the cost of dissemination;
- Programs and activities must meet federally approved standards and protocols for observations, data telemetry, and DMAC in order to ensure data quality and interoperability;
- Establish procedures to ensure reliable and sustained data streams, to routinely evaluate the performance of the IOOS and assess the value of the information produced, and to improve operational elements of the system as new capabilities become available and user requirements evolve;
- Improve the capacity of all states and regions to contribute to and benefit from the IOOS through training and infrastructure development nationwide;
- Demonstrate that observing systems or elements thereof, that are incorporated into the operational system either benefit from being a part of an integrated system or contribute to improving the integrated system in terms of the delivery of new or improved products that serve the needs of user groups.