eReefs AIMS Visualisation Portal

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In this portal you will find a range of visualisations of the eReefs Hydrodynamic and BioGeoChemical models of the Great Barrier Reef. These models are like weather models, but for the marine environment, providing a picture of the current environmental conditions on the Great Barrier Reef and what has happened in the past. Here you can see past extreme weather events such as:

This site provides both direct visualisations of the outputs of the eReefs Hydrodynamic and BioGeoChemical models and aggregations of the hourly and daily data to longer time periods, such as monthly, annual and all-time (approx. 8 years).

eReefs Hydrodynamic model

The eReefs hydrodynamic model predicts the movement of water, as well as key environmental conditions such as water temperature and salinity (which shows freshwater runoff). This model allows us to better understand the path of cyclones and how they mix the water, the location of potentially damaging heat waves that can cause coral bleaching, the ocean currents that disperse larvae of corals and Crown-of-Thorns starfish, and fresh water plumes from flooded rivers that can damage inshore reefs.

This model is run with a 4 km and 1 km grid size. The 4 km grid has a longer hindcast going back to September 2010, while the 1 km model starts in December 2014. The 1 km model also only extends out to the edge of the Great Barrier Reef, whereas the 4 km model covers much of the Coral Sea. The hydrodynamic model and visualisations are updated in near-real time, within 1 week of the current date.

eReefs BioGeoChemical model (4 km)

The GBR4 BioGeoChemical (GBR) model builds on the GBR4 hydrodynamic model by modelling the water quality (nutrients and suspended sediment) and key ecological processes (coral, seagrass, plankton) that drive the water chemistry. This model allows us to better understand how water quality is affected by land runoff.

These visualisations are based on the 3.1 version of the BioGeoChemical (BGC) model which is updated in near-real time. Visualisations of this BGC model are from the following scenario runs:

Water Chemistry

Macro photograph of coca-cola bubbles - adjusted Hue

Water Quality Measures


Macroalgae, seagrass and coral

In nurient replete waters of the outer GBR, corals rely almost entirely on the sun and their symbiotic partners, zooxanthellae, for their energy