NERTO Students

Ysabel Banon

Ysabel Banon
M.S, Earth Systems Sciences and Environmental Engineering, Graduate, 12/23/2019

Internship Location: NESDIS

Internship Date: Summer 2019


Banon received her undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering from UNMSM – Greater National University San Marcos in Lima, Peru. Past internships include time as an Assistant Production Manager at Texfina S.A. a fabric development company also in Lima, Peru. Her research interests include applying remote sensing to study coral reef bleaching in the Caribbean

NERTO Research Project Title:

Heat Stress and Bleaching in Coral reef Communities during Recent Bleaching Events.

NERTO Project Details :


The objectives of the project are to: 

1. "Advance research with the NOAA Coral Reef Watch 5km daily Degree Heating Week (DHW) data, updating and extending prior results for the Caribbean from 2014-2016. 

2. Analyze multi‐year datasets in more detail for the Florida Keys region, where the most complete coral bleaching observations are available from among Caribbean locations that provided in- water observations, to see how heat stress varies with bleaching observations for each year and across multiple years. This time series analysis will include linear regression and K‐means cluster analyses. 

3. Develop an understanding of how heat stress relates to repeated coral bleaching events across multiple years. (Preliminary analyses for the K‐means have shown the distribution of the DHW was noticeable around 5°Celsius and 67% bleaching. For observations where DHW values > 4°C‐weeks, coral bleaching was expected and confirmed by in‐situ bleaching observations.)

NERTO Outcomes:

I have been receiving some training in PYTHON, lectures related to working with environmental data. I did participate in the OSOS symposium. Participate in a workshop using Ocean Watch and learned how to use URL directly on your code, without downloading the data. Taught myself how the logistic probability analysis works. Plot the s curve using the logistic analysis for severe and significant bleaching.

Value of NERTO to the Line Office:

Coral Reef Watch (CRW) provides resource managers, researchers, and the public with NOAA satellite data, near-real-time products, modeled predictions, and other needed information about the coral reef environment. This allows local coral reef communities to work with decision makers and elected officials to improve management and regulation of coral reefs in a warming climate. Due to the vital nature of coral reefs and the ecological, economical and societal benefits they provide, NOAA CRW continues to use in situ bleaching observations collected from the field to evaluate, validate, and improve CRW’s coral bleaching heat stress monitoring products. The third global coral bleaching event (June 2014-May 2017) was the most severe, widespread, and longest-lasting global-scale coral bleaching event ever recorded. It resulted in very high coral mortality on many reefs, rapid deterioration of reef structures and far-reaching environmental impacts. CRW worked with the coral reef community to collect the largest database of in situ observations ever assembled. Work performed by Ysabel Banon through the NERTO program contributed directly to improvement of CRW’s products by comparing them against in situ observations of coral across the Caribbean basin. This will enable CRW to better understand how well the current generation of products performed and identify where they need improvement.

NERTO Skills:

Practice Python, R studio and MATLAB. I got more confident programming and I can switch from to MATLAB to R. I can use the intearctive plot from MATLAB, but more documentation is available in R studio. I can train and validate data. I can plot the ROC curve to compare which model is a best fit for my model. Learn AIC to compare models.