Coastal Observing SYstem for Northern and Arctic Seas (COSYNA)
Core Data
Hosting Legal Entity
Helmholtz Association
Max-Planck-Straße 1, Geesthacht, PO: 21502, Schleswig-Holstein (Germany)
Type Of RI
Single-sited, Virtual
Coordinating Country
Current Status:
Operational since 1970
Scientific Description
Mission and objectives
The COSYNA Mission is to develop an integrated observing and modelling system suitable for the operational and synoptic description of the environmental status of the North Sea and Arctic coastal waters. COSYNA aims to provide data and knowledge tools to help authorities, industry, and the public to plan and manage routine tasks, respond to emergency situations and to evaluate trends. Scientific products and infrastructure are developed to foster scientific knowledge of the “global coast” and its regional manifestations. COSYNA is financed and coordinated by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht Centre for Materials and Coastal Research GmbH. The scientific work is carried out jointly with the partners of the Helmholtz association, universities, and monitoring authorities.

RI Keywords
Ferrybox, Sediment, Forecasts, Remote sensing, Buoy, Observation, Satellites, Oceanographic data, Offshore stations, Measurement
RI Category
Research Data Service Facilities
Scientific Domain
Chemistry and Material Sciences
Physics, Astronomy, Astrophysics and Mathematics
Earth and Environmental Sciences
Biological and Medical Sciences
Data Portal

The COSYNA data portal enables technical realisation of these data streams, ranging from the data source to the end user. Metadata, observational and model data are merged into a long-term, searchable archive which can help to identify the development of physical and biogeochemical parameters in the North Sea on a broad spectrum of temporal and spatial scales. In the COSYNA data portal all routine data that are measured in COSYNA can be selected and displayed in combination with remote sensing and radar data. COSYNA adheres to an open access policy, providing scientists, coastal management and laypersons with equal access to all COSYNA data and metadata. The COSYNA data portal presents all data and metadata in a comprehensive format. The users can select parameters, data sources, time frames and format types (overlay raster map or time series diagrams) and can either plot or download the data. All regularly measured data can be selected in the COSYNA data portal in combination with remote sensing and radar data.

Data Management

COSYNA data management organises the data streams between observational and storage systems at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht and partner sites, the data documentation and the user interfaces for data retrieval and presentation. By adhering to national and international standards and regulations for data management and quality control, COSYNA ensures compatibility with other marine and coastal data centres. These standards cover information sources, data exchange, metadata and data quality. COSYNA can therefore contribute to a European-wide network of coastal observation systems. Monitoring the current state of the sea as well as the subsequent pre-operational reconstructions of these conditions and their prediction require fast transmission rates, automated quality control and data assimilation.