Formerly a program called Drifters where students designed, built, and deployed ocean drifters equipped with salinity and temperature probes that track surface currents and the flow of salt and fresh waters that swirl throughout the harbor. This year Scituate High School’s Robotics Club advisor Ralph Perrotto will lead our engineering program. We have also partnered with Particle which is generously supplying materials and advice.
Current tracks are used by NOAAOceanographer Jim Manning to build computer models that can predict the direction and velocity of surface currents throughout the Gulf of Maine.
The Drifter Team gathered surface current data about circulation patterns inside Cohasset Harbor. The team added the collected data to its robust set of data from previous years to produce a vector map illustrating the strength and direction of surface currents between the breakwater and the Gulf River. There’s much to be gained from this information, for it illuminates key features of how tidal currents work to “flush” out the harbor on a daily basis.