Refurbishment Coastal Cameras

Collaroy-Narrabeen, located along Sydney’s northern beaches, is the site of one of just a handful of beaches worldwide where researchers have an unbroken and regular record of the changes that have occurred to this stretch of coast spanning several decades. Initiated in 1976 by Professor Andy Short of the Coastal Studies Unit at the University of Sydney, at five survey transects around the 3.5 km long embayment, the beach has been survey every month for the past 38 years. This is perhaps one of just 5 beaches world-wide where such a dataset is available to coastal researchers and managers.

Commencing 10 years ago, the responsibility for continuation of this survey program transferred to Associate Professor Ian Turner and his team at the Water Research Laboratory, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UNSW. Adopting modern surveying techniques and the installation of an Argus Coastal Imaging Station atop a beachfront apartment building, for the past decade the UNSW team has used the growing dataset to underpin a wide range of research, focusing on the prediction of storm erosion, linking regional climate indices to observed beach variability and change, and most recently, the development of new numerical models to better forecast the likely response of sandy beaches to shifts in wave patterns and rising sea-levels, that are anticipated in coming decades.

Reflecting the technological shift to automated, remote sensing methods for ongoing monitoring and measurement of changing coastlines, analysis of the images from the Argus Coastal Imaging station at Collaroy-Narrabeen is now the primary data source that is underpinning these research programs.  After 10 years, the long-serving cameras and computer system installed at this unique site reached the end of their lifespan.

This new funding kindly provided from supporters of the SIMS Foundation 2013 Emerald Dinner has now enabled the system to be fully refurbished in 2014, ready for another 10 years of service to coastal research and management in Australia.

Thank you.

Ian Turner

Coastal Cameras