SIMONA Costa: CIGIDEN and Observatorio de la Costa present coastal resilience monitoring and forecasting system in Cahuil
In the beautiful coastal town of Cahuil, in the commune of Pichilemu, the director of CIGIDEN, Rodrigo Cienfuegos, and the director of the Coastal Observatory, Carolina Martínez, presented this week the “Coastal Resilience Anticipation Monitoring System: SIMONA Costa”, part of a project funded by ANID through the Applied Research Sub-Directorate, which begins its technology transfer stage after three years of testing and development.
The two-year project contemplates the use of video and advanced computing techniques such as machine learning, which will provide a detailed seven-day forecast in sectors such as Cahuil and Punta de Lobos. From all this data, it will be possible to gather information about the coastline, waves and currents, among other parameters, to monitor the state of the coast affected by phenomena such as climate change and human intervention.
SIMONA Costa, is conceptualized as the integration of an image acquisition system, projection of these images to the real world, modules with forecast of climatic and oceanographic variables, and machine learning algorithms to continuously “learn” as the database grows. The project contemplates participatory methodologies to support the development of new indicators and metrics for the coastal zone to support the development of new governance models.
“It will decisively promote the development of indicators, metrics and tools for political, legal, management and operational decision-making. All of this will be based on an iterative process of dialogue between researchers and different stakeholders, including users, legislators, public institutions and foundations,” explained Rodrigo Cienfuegos.
Representatives of the Chilean Navy, ONEMI and the Mayor of Pichilemu, Christian Pozo, participated in the meeting, held at the Cahuil Neighborhood Council to learn details of the new “SIMONA Costa” system. This initiative is supported by the Observatorio de la Costa, the GEF Coastal Wetlands Project, the Ministry of Science and local foundations working to defend their ecosystems.
After the meeting, the Observatorio de la Costa, headed by its director Carolina Martínez and accompanied by the expert from the University of California Santa Barbara, Charles Lester, made a drone flight over Laguna Cahuil, a body of surface water at the mouth of Estero Nilahue, whose waters are artificially connected by the inhabitants themselves to allow the sea to enter, facilitating the production of salt characteristic of the area.