Oceanids is developing five new marine sensors through a competitive grant call. Partners in the NOC, University of Exeter, University of Southampton, ANB Sensors, Chelsea Technologies, and Plymouth Marine Laboratories are collaborating to deliver the TRL8 standard sensors and integrate these onto a range of autonomous surface and sub-surface vehicles that can in the future be made accessible to the UK science community. They are:
AutoNutS: Autonomous vehicle Nutrient Sensors, Prof. Matt Mowlem (NOC), Grant Ref.: NE/P020798/1
This project is optimising the performance of an existing NOC sensor to produce six new operational devices for measuring nutrients and micronutrients. The data gathered using these sensors will be crucial to advancing our knowledge of how marine ecosystems work and how they respond to a changing climate. These 'lab-on-chip' miniaturised laboratories are able to perform seawater chemical analysis using small amounts of seawater samples and chemical reagents to help create more complete low-cost ocean chemistry datasets.
BioCam: mapping of benthic biology, geology and ecology with essential ocean variables, Dr. Blair Thornton (University of Southampton), Grant Ref.: NE/P020887/1
This project is develope a unique and low power 3D visual mapping system to obtain highly detailed colour images and topographical measurements of the seafloor such as measuring the cover of live cold-water coral within marine protected areas. This sensor will be able to integrate with the Autosub, ALR and remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Isis underwater platforms operated by the National Oceanography Centre.
CaPASOS-ASV: Calibrated pCO2 in Air and Surface Ocean Sensor for Autonomous Surface Vehicles, Prof. Andrew Watson (University of Exeter), Grant Ref.: NE/P020755/1
This project seeks to enhance our understanding of the global carbon cycle, particularly in in the Indian, South Pacific and Southern oceans, where there is currently insufficient data. The team from the University of Exeter, Plymouth Marine Laboratories and NOC are developing a calibrated sensor to that will be deployed on the Wave Glider vehicle to measure partial pressure of carbon dioxide (pCO2) in the air and surface ocean, both of which are vital to calculating how CO2 moves between the air and sea.
CarCASS: Carbonate Chemistry Autonomous Sensor System, Prof. Matt Mowlem (NOC), Grant Ref.: NE/P02081X/1
This project is delivering the first sensor of its kind that is capable of autonomously making measurements of seawater carbonate chemistry including pH, Dissolved Inorganic Carbon (DIC) and Total Alkalinity (TA) from the surface to full ocean depth. Working in partnership with ANB Sensors, the NOC CarCASS technology will be used to improve our understanding of the ocean’s rapidly changing CO2 reservoir, as well as monitor ocean acidification in areas of significant ecosystem and commercial importance such as coral reefs, shell fishing areas and mariculture establishments. The sensor will also be a powerful tool for monitoring sub-seafloor carbon storage reservoirs due to its ability to detect carbon dioxide leaks during and after gas injection.
STAFES-APP: Single Turnover Active Fluorometry of Enclosed Samples for Autonomous Phytoplankton Productivity, Prof. C. Mark Moore (University of Southampton), Grant Ref.: NE/P020844/1
This technology will deliver a step change in our ability to understand the global carbon cycle and the function of ocean ecosystems. The project being delivered as a collaboration between the University of Southampton and Chelsea Technologies (CTG) is developing an active chlorophyll fluorometer sensor capable of measuring how phytoplankton process carbon for food in-situ. It will be able to monitor and understand this process from smallest scales up to oceanic basin scales.