A recently updated Indian moored buoy system in the northern Bay of Bengal (at 17.5° N/ 89.1° E) was implemented on 19 May during the passage of Cyclone Amphan. The newly installed Hrudaya data acquisition system transmits data every three hours under normal conditions and hourly during cyclones. The valuable data it provided helped forecasters in the Department of Meteorology to accurately predict the cyclone’s trajectory, size and time of landfall, and to provide early warnings to people at risk.
The moored buoy system was put in place in 1997 by India’s Ocean Observation Systems, which is part of the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT) under the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoESs). The unique Hrudaya algorithm installed on the existing MoES-NIOT data buoy system is capable of transmitting and disseminating real-time datasets in high-frequency mode during cyclones – at low pressure and high wind speeds. During Cyclone Amphan, the high-frequency transmission was triggered from 00:00 GMT to 16:00 GMT on 19 May, providing 11 additional real-time datasets. The system withstood the cyclone’s passage, which generated 6-metre waves, and provided critical met-ocean datasets to stakeholders with higher frequency in real-time.