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2022 STAR Seminars

This page lists past seminars and presentations by STAR scientists and visiting scientists. These seminars include the STAR Science Forum and similar events. Presentation materials for seminars will be provided when available.

All seminar times are given in Eastern Time

5 January 2022

Title: The Commissioning of Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich, the next-generation radar altimeter
Presenter(s): Eric Leuliette, NOAA/NESDIS/STAR
Date & Time: 5 January 2022
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm ET
Location: webinar

STAR Science Seminars

Note: This seminar will be presented online only.

Presenter(s): Eric Leuliette, NOAA/NESDIS/STAR

Sponsor(s): STAR Science Seminar Series

Seminar Contact(s):
Stacy Bunin,

Abstract: NOAA's latest partnered satellite radar altimeter, Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich (S6MF),entered routine operations on November 29 after a planned 12-month commissioning. STAR scientists supported the commissioning through leading multiple cal/val teams, completing cal/val work packages, and critical new algorithm development. These cal/val efforts are essential to NOAA users of sea level, wave heights, and wind speeds, and for a wide range of applications from marine wave and wind hazard warnings, hurricane intensity forecasting, coast inundation, marine debris mitigation, and fisheries management.Sentinel-6 was designed to operate in two altimeter modes, Low-Rate and High-Rate, which increased the complexity of the commissioning compared to its predecessor missions in the TOPEX/Jason series. During the development of Sentinel-6, NOAA Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry played a critical role that ensured that altimeter would interleave these modes to provide continuity in the sea surface record, which is essential to the goals of monitoring long-term sea level rise.In the seminar, STAR's unique contributions to the commissioning are highlighted.These include the application of a STAR-developed algorithm, Fully-Focused SAR, in the absolute range calibration. More critically, STAR scientists identified, developed, and delivered a critical correction in wave heights.

Bio(s): Dr. Eric Leuliette is the Branch Chief of the Laboratory for Satellite Altimetry (LSA) in the NESDIS Center for Satellite Applications and Research (STAR) in College Park, Maryland. The branch includes STAR's Sea Surface Height and Sea Ice science teams. As the NOAA Jason Program Scientist and Project Scientist, he co-chairs the Ocean Surface Topography Science Team and the Sentinel-6 Validation Team.

Slides, Recordings, Other Materials:

Subscribe to the NOAA Science Seminar Series weekly e-mail: Send an e-mail to with the word 'subscribe' in the subject or body.

13 January 2022

Title: Toolbox - CoastWatch Data Portal and Vertigo
Presenter(s): Michael Soracco and Peter Hollemans, NOAA
Date & Time: 13 January 2022
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm ET
Location: Webinar

NOAA Science Seminar Series

Title: CoastWatch Toolbox Demonstration - Data Portal and other tools, plus an Intro to Vertigo - a new CoastWatch tool!

Presenter(s): Michael Soracco, RIVA Solutions and Peter Hollemans, Terrenus Earth Sciences-

Sponsor(s): NOAA CoastWatch

Remote Access: Join from your computer, tablet or smartphone.

You can also dial in using your phone. United States: +1 (571) 317-3116; Canada: +1 (647) 497-9373 Access Code: 702-621-341

Seminar Contact(s):

Abstract: The CoastWatch seminar series will feature 2 speakers per month on CoastWatch-related topics. Talks may be general or technical, concern operations or products, and will always be of interest to the CoastWatch user community and anyone interested in delivery of NOAA operational or experimental services.

The CoastWatch Data Portal is a collection of services that facilitate access and use of data. The Portal's map viewer is an online tool that allows visualization and exploration of many satellite oceanographic datasets leveraging services provided by THREDDS and ERDDAP. The portal viewer provides the ability to find data covering an area of interest, compare data from different time periods, subset and download data, plot point time-series, and much more.

Vertigo is a tool that is currently available in a beta form to everyone including NOAA users. The goal of the Vertigo project is to create an intuitive application for scientific data search and display. This tool is not yet advertised on the CoatWatch website but is on Github: and feedback on it is requested.

Vertigo ties together scientific data of any kind from different data servers in a virtual globe environment and currently supports any THREDDS, ERDDAP, or OPeNDAP servers, CF-compliant NetCDF files including level 2 data, or tiled web map servers such as the STAR OCView (static images) site or ArcGIS and other tiled web map servers (dynamic images). The current development (beta 0.7 on the github link above) has these changes since the last 0.6 beta release:
- Reorganization of the source code so that users can build and run their own copy of the latest beta version (instructions on Github)
- Error logging window now available from within the application to help with beta development and user feedback
- Added support for Mercator projection on ellipsoid Earth model (previously just spherical Earth)
- Fixed window size and empty Earth display issues under Windows


Bio(s): Michael Soracco, RIVA Solutions for NOAA, is the HelpDesk Coordinator for NOAA CoastWatch. He specializes in user access by developing and maintaining data products, the "data portal" and the CoastWatch helpdesk. He has served as a commissioned officer in the NOAA Corps where assignments included servicing equatorial moored buoys, conducting hydrographic surveys, and as a NESDIS operations officer. He supports CoastWatch through user engagement, training, and product development.

Peter Hollemans, Terrenus Earth Sciences, has been contracted to NOAA via RIVA Solutions and has been with NOAA's CoastWatch Central since 1997. He writes software for data processing, access, and visualization.
Slides, Recordings Other Materials: available upon request

Subscribe to the NOAA Science Seminar Series weekly e-mail: Send an e-mail to with the word 'subscribe' in the subject or body.

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