Marine research gets over $1 million to support new discovery through data analysis

February 2, 2018

The investment will be used to further develop the Marine Virtual Laboratory (MARVL), enabling it to develop data and software services to underpin the Australian National Shelf-seas Reanalysis (ANSR), an important element of a national ocean modelling system.


‘Reanalysis’ is the technical term used to describe the combination of model simulation with observations, which allows researchers to maximise the value of the observation data.


Assembling the necessary data collections and software services to prepare ‘model-ready’ data will provide researchers with the tools to provide a realistic and complete picture of the three-dimensional, time-varying shelf/coastal ocean circulation around Australia going back more than two decades.


The project will receive $425,000 of joint funding from ANDS, Nectar and RDS as part of their Data enhanced Virtual Lab (DeVL) program for 2017/18. This will be boosted by a further $75,000 of cash and $510,000 of in-kind co-investment from project partners.


Project partners include:

  • Integrated Marine Observing System Australian Ocean Data Network (IMOS-AODN) [project contract lead agent]

  • Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) Science for Services and Community Forecasts Programs

  • CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere Coastal Modelling Team

  • MetOcean Solutions Ltd NZ (MOS)

  • National Computational Infrastructure (NCI)

  • South Australia Research and Development Institute (SARDI)

  • Tasmanian Partnership for Advanced Computing (TPAC)

  • University of New South Wales (UNSW)

  • University of Western Australia (UWA)


Why this investment is needed


Australia does not yet have a nation-wide long term reanalysis product for its shelf and coastal seas, unlike the US and Europe. These countries have already proven the benefits of such a product to industry and government.


The data services provided through this project will be innovative for Australian researchers, enabling much faster access to, and formatting of, increased volumes of observational data – providing further opportunities for investigating the marine environment in regards to managing conservation and exploitation.


The MARVL DeVL project is also an important step towards the creation of a national ocean modelling system, a recommendation of the National Marine Science Plan 2015-2025.


Growth of the ‘blue economy’ is predicted to reach $100 billion per year by 2025: a projected growth three times faster than Australia’s gross domestic product.


ANDS, Nectar, RDS, IMOS and NCI are projects of the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS) program, an initiative of the Commonwealth Department of Education and Training.


For any enquiries about this project, please contact the ANDS/Nectar/RDS project coordinator Angeletta Leggio (



About ANDS, Nectar and RDS


The Australian National Data Service (ANDS) makes Australia’s research data assets more valuable for researchers, research institutions and the nation. Find out more at


The National eResearch Collaboration Tools and Resources project (Nectar) provides online infrastructure that supports researchers to connect with colleagues in Australia and around the world, using and sharing data, models, analysis tools and workflows. Find out more at


The Research Data Services project (RDS) enables researchers to easily store, discover, access and share their data in a nationally supported environment, resulting in better research outcomes. Find out more at


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This website relates to activity between July 2017 and June 2018.


Please visit the ARDC website for all activity post June 2018.

Monash University is the lead agent of ANDS.

The University of Melbourne is the lead agent of Nectar.

The University of Queensland is the lead agent of RDS.

This activity received grant funding from the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy.

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