The Queensland and Northern Australia Mooring sub-facility maintains key moorings across tropical Queensland and Northern Australia through regular six monthly servicing.
Great Barrier Reef Moorings
Some of the first moorings to be deployed in the National Mooring Network were four mooring pairs and an additional mooring north of Heron Island in Great Barrier Reef. These nine moorings were deployed over two research cruises between September 2007 and June 2008. The moorings include in the northern Great Barrier Reef the Lizard Island Slope and Shelf moorings, in the central Great Barrier Reef the Myrmidon Reef, Elusive Reef, and Palm Passage, and in the southern Great Barrier Reef the Capricorn Channel, Heron North, Heron South and One Tree East. Initially all current meters were deployed but there were some delays in instrument availability resulting in the Great Barrier Reef moorings not having their full suite of instruments on first deployment. This was rectified in 2009 with all moorings complete and data being downloaded during six monthly servicing. The moorings were consolidated to four pairs of moorings in 2009/10.
Once the four pairs of Great Barrier Reef arrays were in place there were some alterations and notable events over the following years. In 2009 Tropical Cyclone Yasi traversed the Coral Sea and passed just to the north of the Central Great Barrier Reef mooring array. The subsurface moorings temporarily suffered knockdown as the eye passed by however recovered and continued to produce good data in its wake. In February 2013, the Palm Passage mooring was upgraded to real time and the Heron Island North mooring was removed. The Palm Passage together with the Yongala NRS moorings provide data to eReefs’ whole of Great Barrier Reef hydrodynamic model to improve the near real time modelling results. In 2014 a consolidation of moorings in the Great Barrier Reef was undertaken with the removal of Lizard Island Shelf and the Lizard Island Slope moorings in May 2014 and Elusive Reef Passage mooring in October 2014.
Indonesian Throughflow Shelf Moorings
The Indonesian Throughflow (ITF) shelf moorings were deployed late June 2010. The set of four moorings include Timor Slope, Margaret Harries Bank, Flat Top Banks and Joseph Bonaparte Gulf. These shelf moorings compliment the Deep Water Moorings Indonesian Throughflow moorings that were deployed in June 2011 completing the full array.
Northwest Western Australia Moorings
In May 2011 the West Australian state government funded the deployment of the Kimberley and Pilbara arrays in January and February 2012. The four moorings of the Kimberly array were deployed at 50, 100, 200 and 400m isobars on the continental shelf. The three Pilbara mooring were also deployed on the continental shelf at 50, 100 and 200 isobars. In August 2014 due to the cessation in WA Government funding the Kimberly and Pilbara arrays were removed. Two of the moorings were redeployed by the Australian Institute of Marine Science in Camden Sound in the Kimberly region at 50 and 100 isobars (CAM050 and CAM100).
Darwin Ports Moorings
Darwin Port Corporation has co-invested in a real time mooring in Beagle Gulf that will inform the modelling of Darwin Harbour in tandem with the Darwin NRS. The second mooring was initially deployed in Darwin Harbour but it was relocated in June 2013 to a longer term site in Beagle Gulf. The delayed mode mooring has been operating since 2012 however it was upgraded to real-time in September 2014. A second mooring in the Beagle Gulf was also added in May 2015 to expand our understanding of the factors influencing coastal systems and serve as an early warning system.