Technical Program Topics

Visions for the Blue Economy


The OCEANS 2020 Gulf Coast Conference will give you the tools and knowledge to advance…

OCEANS Technical Sessions, Standard Topics:

1.1 Sonar and transducers
1.2 Calibration of acoustic systems and metrology
1.3 Sound propagation and scattering
1.4 Acoustical oceanography
1.5 Geoacoustic inversion
1.6 Bioacoustics
1.7 Seismo-acoustics
1.8 Ocean noise
1.9 Signal coherence and fluctuation

2.1 Sonar signal processing
2.2 Array signal processing and array design
2.3 Model-based signal processing techniques
2.4 Vector sensor processing
2.5 Synthetic aperture (active and passive)
2.6 Classification and pattern recognition (parametric and non-parametric)
2.7 Sonar imaging
2.8 Acoustic telemetry and communication
2.9 Biologically inspired processing

3.1 Automatic control
3.2 Current measurement technology
3.3 Oceanographic instrumentation and sensors
3.4 Systems and observatories
3.5 Buoy technology
3.6 Cables and connectors
3.7 Marine geodetic information systems

4.1 Air / sea interaction
4.2 Lidar
4.3 Passive observing sensors
4.4 Coastal radars
4.5 Ocean color and hyperspectral measurements
4.6 Airborne and satellite radar and SAR
4.7 Operational observation
4.8 Sensor synergy
4.9 Space systems

5.1 Access, custody, and retrieval of data
5.2 Data visualization
5.3 Numerical modeling and simulation
5.4 Marine GIS and data fusion
5.5 Information management
5.6 Data assimilation
5.7 Real-Time Data Quality Control

6.1 Oceanography: physical, geological, chemical, biological
6.2 Marine geology and geophysics
6.3 Hydrography / seafloor mapping / geodesy
6.4 Hydrodynamics
6.5 Marine life and ecosystems
6.6 Meteorology
6.7 Pollution monitoring
6.8 Mineral resources

7.1 Imaging and vision
7.2 Beam propagation
7.3 Optical sensors and adaptive optics
7.4 Marine optics technology and instrumentation
7.5 Holography and 3D imaging
7.6 Optical communication
7.7 E-M sensing

8.1 Coastal zone management
8.2 Ocean economic potential
8.3 Marine law and policy
8.4 International issues
8.5 Marine safety and security
8.6 Law of the Sea and UNCLOS
8.7 Ocean resources
8.8 Marine education and outreach
8.9 Marine archaeology

9.1 Ocean energy
9.2 Ropes and tension members
9.3 Offshore structures
9.4 Marine materials science
9.5 Marine salvage
9.6 Diving
9.7 Pollution clean-up and pollution remediation
9.8 Deepwater development technology
9.9 Seafloor engineering
9.10 Ocean exploration

10.1 Vehicle design
10.2 Vehicle navigation
10.3 Vehicle performance
10.4 Autonomous underwater vehicles
10.5 Manned underwater vehicles
10.6 Remotely operated vehicles
10.7 Dynamic positioning
10.8 Moorings, rigging, and anchors
10.9 Naval architecture

Gulf Coast Technical Sessions, Special Topics: 

There have been exponential improvements in atmospheric, ocean, ice and wave models in addition to improvements in the global persistent sensing network. With recent development in the Earth System Prediction Capability (ESPC) program, this track highlights ocean and atmospheric models and coupled model development. Sessions include the technical development of models, as opposed to operational use of models.

  • Ocean Modeling at Global / Regional / Nearshore / Coastal Scales
  • Atmospheric Modeling
  • Data Assimilation
  • Product Dissemination
  • Persistent Ocean Observing Networks and Space Based Observations
  • Coupled Systems

Innovative marine science and technology supports many regional and national oceanographic programs, while helping to drive research in academia, government, and private industry. Highlights include new technology and the implementation of such technology in marine-related tasks. This also serves as the 10th annual Oceans In Action Workshop, which began as a spin-off from MTS/IEEE OCEANS 2009 Biloxi. Talks will cover the following topics: operational oceanography, observing systems, decision-support tools, new modeling techniques, and determination and communication of uncertainty. The track also highlights current operational systems from measurement to forecast, as well as what is required to maintain an operational system, including the associated infrastructure (i.e. supercomputers and automated data processes).

With increasing growth of air, surface and undersea autonomous systems, this track highlights the technology challenges, as well as solutions to, sensor development, sensor employment, usage strategies, and data assimilation for research, modeling, and decision aid. Applications include sensing the atmosphere and ocean to support coupled modeling, bathymetric or hydrographic surveying, military action, and monitoring of harmful environmental conditions or events (algae blooms and hypoxia, oil spills).

It has been 10 years since the Deep Water Horizon disaster and massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. During this period, there has been significant research that explored both short- and long-term impacts to the environment, while restoration programs have been targeting the most affected areas. This track covers studies on oil dispersion clean up, mitigation, and post-event impact. It also highlights improvements in
coalition emergency response, and the growth in understanding of the effects from oil spills.

The Gulf of Mexico is home to a diverse cadre of marine species. From nearshore oyster beds to offshore billfish, the Gulf is teaming with life and many residents rely on this dynamic ecosystem for their livelihood. Additionally, land-based and offshore aquaculture is gaining interest in the region, addressing the growing need for sources of high-protein food. Moreover, the Gulf is plagued by recurring phenomena such as hypoxia,
harmful algal blooms, and high influx of fresh water, challenging the health and productiveness of local species and humans who engage in marine activities both recreationally and commercially. This track focuses on these issues, as well as oil & gas platform and reef programs, fisheries research and management, and new technologies supporting biodiversity assessments

The Gulf of Mexico has seen about 50% of its coastal habitats vanish during the past century. Frequent hurricanes, sea level rise, and increasing freshwater outflows are common challenges along the Gulf coast, causing often devastating impacts. Featured in this track are efforts to predict future storms and other phenomena, forecast their impact and extent, emerging decision support tools, damage mitigation efforts, and
programs to improve a community’s ability to bounce back from these inevitable occurrences. Other areas of interest include coastal zone resource management, barrier island management, and climate adaptation planning.


If you are interested in hosting a tutorial or workshop, please contact the TPC Chair, Steve Lingsch at


Click here for details on our all-inclusive challenge program.