A 4-member team from Ocean Networks Canada traveled to the Strait of Georgia shore station, located near Vancouver Airport, to calibrate the newly-installed CODAR antenna.
Generally, an antenna pattern measurement (“APM”) is performed using a powerboat to carry the radio transponder, but the shallow mudflats surrounding the Iona shore station made this impossible. Waiting for high tide, the team launched a canoe from the Iona causeway and paddled it through the required arc.
The calibration process entails moving a radio transponder around the CODAR station along an arc of radius 1 kilometre. Ideally, the signal reception would be uniform over this arc, but various objects surrounding the antenna (trees, buildings, etc., but especially metallic objects) introduce distortions in the electromagnetic environment. The CODAR station receives the signal from the transponder, and uses it to map the spatially-varying antenna reception.
After several hours of paddling the VENUS team was on its way back; while technicians at CODAR in San Francisco began processing the APM data collected during the day. After this is complete, it will be possible to combine data from the Iona and Westshore Coal Terminal CODAR stations to generate two-dimensional maps of ocean currents in the Strait of Georgia between the two stations.
Check out the VENUS data plots for more information about CODAR and other types of data provided by Ocean Networks Canada.