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A Network of Wireless Cameras on Thompson Island
Thompson Island Erosion Monitoring

A wireless video camera network was set up on Thompson Island in Boston Harbor to monitor wave erosion of a 25' high sand and clay bluff. This project was established to test the capabilities of low-cost video cameras connected over a long-distance wireless antenna network. The camera was in place for 2 years and 3 months delivering daily images and video. It survived Hurricane Sandy, and many other storms afterward. It was finally knocked down by winter storm Juno on January 27, 2015. The project successfully proved that video cameras can provide valuable data for coastal research, and as a result, the exact same camera design has since been replicated for two other resarch studies in coastal Massachusetts.

Project team: Ben Wetherill (environmental scientist, UMass), Yuting Zhang (electrical engineer, BU).

Click here for a full project description and list of investigators

For more information, visit ACASAK Technologies.

Bluff Camera

Latest images. Camera no longer active.


Map of location

2015-01-26 15:54:35

2015-01-26 15:24:33

2015-01-26 14:57:28

2015-01-25 15:26:31

2015-01-25 14:56:30

2015-01-25 14:26:31

2015-01-25 13:59:26
Latest high wave (or motion) sequence
snapshots 1 second apart

2015-01-21 10:34:54

2015-01-21 10:34:55

Oct. 27, 2012 (pre-Hurricane Sandy)

Oct. 30, 2012 (post-Sandy)

Nov. 2, 2012 (post-debris fall)

Dec. 6, 2012

Dec. 18, 2012 (extreme high tide)

Dec. 19, 2012 (post-extreme high tide)

Dec. 22, 2012 (minor slumping)

Dec. 24, 2012 (frost?)

Dec. 25, 2012 (snow)

Dec. 28, 2012 (post-45 mph winds)

Jan. 4, 2013 (minor slumping)

Jan. 6, 2013 (minor slumping)

Jan. 11, 2013

Jan. 15, 2013

Jan. 18, 2013 (no high tides, ~32degF)

Jan. 21, 2013 (early frost settling)

Jan. 28, 2013 (7 days < 32F)

Feb. 3, 2013

Feb. 12, 2013 (13' tide, 45mph wind)

Feb. 16, 2013

Feb. 24, 2013 (max. frost settling)

Mar. 7, 2013 (12.3' tide + storm)

Mar. 10, 2013 (after storm)

Apr. 22, 2013

May. 27, 2013

Jun. 11, 2013 (before)

Jun. 12, 2013 (after only wind gusts)

Jun. 25, 2013

Jul. 24, 2013 (high tide)

Video of extreme high tide boat wakes 7/26/13

Time series snapshots October 2012 to June 2013

Video of extreme high tide with low wind 1/11/13

Video of extreme high tide waves 12/18/12

Video of frost induced bluff settling 2/23/13

Video of debris fall 11/1/12