International Ocean Institute - Malta Operational Centre

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Programme of Activities

Research and science applications


    • Studies in physical oceanography around the Islands of Malta, also contributing to development of knowledge on marine resources and environmental conditions.
    • Numerical modelling of the Maltese Shelf area with a focus on developing operational ocean forecasting capabilities with downscaling to the coastal zone. This initiative will be pursued mainly through the participation in MFSTEP.
    • Participation in marine research projects within international and regional programmes. The main EU-funded projects in which the PO-Unit has concluded its participations are:

      ESEAS is a project involving a network for absolute sea level measurements in the European Seas. The sea level station at Portomaso will be supplying data to this project for a 3-year period. The PO-Unit of IOI Malta is applying to become an official member of ESEAS.


      MFS towards environmental prediction - MFSTEP is a continuation of the Mediterranean Forecasting System Pilot Project - MFSTEP in which the PO-Unit contributed by developing a shelf-scale numerical model comprising the approaches of the Maltese Islands and the stretch of sea to the north up to the coast of Sicily. In MFSTEP this model will be run with higher spatial resolution to produce weekly forecasts of the circulation, temperature, salinity and mixed layer depth in the area.






      SEA SEARCH targeting to develop, maintain and electronically publish jointly meta-data products/directories to keep track of ocean and marine data and information; the project will improve the overall awareness, overview and access to ocean and marine data and information in Europe, including the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea. It will also exchange experience and cooperation towards the development, promotion and implementation of data and information management practices and methods. IOI-MOC will be working with a number of local marine-related organisations/entities to compile a national directory on (i) marine research activities, and (ii) marine data holdings. Within the framework of this project, IOI-MOC will also be developing the Malta Blue Pages. The latter will function as a web-based oceanographic database to serve as an online repository centre for a number of data sources in the field of oceanography in Malta. The Malta Blue Pages will be hosted by the CapeMalta website of the PO-Unit and is being developed on methodologies using state-of-the-art server-side technologies. It will also make use of RealTimeTM Publishing Systems for remote maintenance and updating of the database over the Internet.
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