Free-floating buoys in Lynn Canal for Ocean Current Study During Gillnet Season

During May through September 2021, a team of scientists from the University of Alaska will be measuring the surface currents in Lynn Canal to better understand the speed and direction of the local ocean circulation. The measurements will be made using specialized current trackers engineered to drift with the upper 3 to 4 feet of the surface water. Each drifter has a float with a GPS and telemetry inside to send us data so we know where it is located at all times. We track each drifter position in real-time.

The photos in the attachment below show several drifters immediately after deployment, each with an orange surface float and drogue below to ensure the drifter follows the surface current.

See Lynn Canal Ocean Surface Drifters 2021 forĀ  the location released and additional information about the study.

If you see a drifter in the water, please let it drift. If you see one washed ashore or grounded in shallow water, please note the location and let us know. If you wish to be updated on this work, or see a grounded drifter, please email:

Mark Johnson ( majohnson@alaska.edu )

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