Surface Velocity Program Barometer (SVP-B) Drifter

SVPB Drifter Schematic
Surface Velocity Program Barometer Drifter

Technical Description

  • 35cm sphere surface float
  • GPS based tracking
  • Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD) telemetry
  • Sea Surface Temperature (±0.05K accuracy)
  • Sea Level Barometric Pressure Sensor (±0.4hPa accuracy)
  • Holey Sock Drogue centered at 15m depth
  • Variable sampling rate down to 5 minutes
  • 2 year lifespan

Barometric Pressure Sensor

The SVP Barometer (SVPB) drifter has the same capabilities of the SVP Drifter but it also carries a barometer to measure Sea Level Pressure (Centurioni et al. 2016; Horányi et al. 2016; Maximenko et al. 2013; Niiler 2001). The air pressure sensor can either be a High Precision Barometer (HPB) by Honeywell, stable over the two years long nominal lifespan of the drifters and with an accuracy of ±0.4hPa, or an Integrated Pressure Transducer (IPT), also by Honeywell that has similar specifications and accuracy.

Data Quality

Since ocean waves often pull the surface buoy underwater the air intake that communicates with the barometer is protected with a specially designed self-draining port and waterproofed with two Gore-Tex® membranes.

When the drifter goes underwater erroneous Sea Level Pressure readings will occur, and these are filtered out by an on-board algorithm before the data message is formatted and queued for satellite transmission. Like the SVP, the lifespan of the SVPB drifter is in excess of two years.