Martin Verlaan was born in the Netherlands on December 22 1969. In 1988 he graduated from high-school. After which he studied Applied Mathematics at the University of Twente.In 1993, he graduated Cum Laude with the Systems and control group which is headed by Prof. Kwakernaak. The research for his Masters' thesis was carried out at the Technical University of Lulea in northern Sweden. The topic of this work an algorithm for the classification of bacteria. From September 3 1993 until June 30 1997 he was a Ph.D. Student at the applied mathematics department of Delft University of Technology. His supervisor at the research group for Analysis of Large Scale Systems was Prof. Arnold Heemink. The research was carried out in close cooperation with the National Institute for Coastal and Marine Management (RIKZ) which is part of Rijkswaterstaat. After finishing his PhD on July 1 1997, he started working as a project-leader with the Hydrodynamics en Data-assimilation research group of RIKZ. In addition he has a part-time research position at the mathematics department of Delft University of Technology. Currently Martin Verlaan is senior researcher Oceanography and Mathematics at Deltares. For several years he has been responsible for the coordination of research and development in the field of data assimilation and for the scientific coordination and quality control of projects related to Kalman filtering, storm surge forecasting, marine operational forecasting, automated calibration, design of monitoring networks, operational databases and tidal prediction.

He has been actively involved in the development of OpenDA, a generic software package for data-assimilation. OpenDA, contains plug-ins for many models, including SWAN,Delft3D, WAQUA, SOBEK, EUROS/LOTOS and many more. OpenDA is being developed in close cooperation with Delft University, TNO, RIVM and several companies.

Dr. Verlaan also has a part-time position as assistant professor at the Mathematics department of Delft University of Technology, where he performs research on Kalman filtering algorithms and other data-assimilation applications together with Prof. Dr. Ir. A.W. Heemink and a number of PhD. students.

He is also one of the team leaders for the Storm surge warning service (SVSD), which is the responsible authority in the Netherlands for issuing warnings in the event of a severe storm.

In addition, he is actively involved with NOOS, a body that tries to stimulate exchange of knowledge, monitoring data and forecast products between the authorities for marine operational forecasting around the North Sea. Some of the NOOS successes are the real-time exchange of monitoring data and the creation of a common bathymetry for the North Sea.