Marine Monitor (M2)

Marine Monitor is a lower cost software solution that works with off-the-shelf radars to provide 24/7 situational awareness of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). 

Preserving marine protected areas (MPAs) is challenging since poaching and other activities can occur at night, in the early hours of the morning, and far offshore. Marine Monitor (M2) combines commercial-off-the-shelf marine radar hardware with a custom software solution written using open-source tools to track boat activity and illegal fishing in nearshore waters (out to 5 miles) at a fraction of the cost of traditional military-grade systems. The M2 software downloads radar data and mirrors it in a friendly user-interface that can be stored and replayed via the cloud. The M2 software can further improve MPA monitoring with the optional integration of a Automatic Identification System (AIS) sensor and high-definition pan-tilt-zoom video camera.

To learn more about M2, check out a brief introductory video and our Marine Monitor (M2) Presentation.


If you are interested in sponsoring a M2 system for an MPA or if you have a location that could be a good fit for a M2 deployment, please contact

How we as humans use the San Francisco Bay has been poorly documented. This system, with radar, video and AIS, will enable us to document one of the predominant uses of the Bay: boating of all sorts. This is incredibly important to assess the risk of ship strikes to marine mammals, as more dolphins, porpoises and whales are entering the Bay, not to mention seals and sea lions! Vessels moving through the Bay also create an acoustic presence, affect the air, and create threats of fuel spills and point-source pollutants. We need a clear picture of how we use the Bay if we want to manage and conserve it.
— Ellen Hines, PhD Associate Director and Professor of Geography & Environment, Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies, San Francisco State University