Topic 3: Modernize Ocean Infrastructure and Enhance Technology Development
Lead PI: James G. Bellingham, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (The grant was awarded when Dr. Bellingham was with The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). MIT therefore remains the lead institution.)
The study goal is to develop technologies for employing Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) and the associated navigational systems to observe basin-scale evolution in the Arctic. The AUV is being built almost exclusively with proven technologies resulting in considerable cost savings and an inexpensive system for use by the oceanographic community. Though this effort is directed toward developing Arctic vehicles, the operational capability (range of 1000 km and depth rating of 1500 m) will give it a broader range of applicability.
- Fuel Cell Technologies Ltd. - Fuel cells.
- Scientific Solutions, Inc. - Self-locating, remotely-installed transponder for navigation.
- Florida Atlantic University - Vehicle control network.
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Study coordination; vehicle design, high level control, integration, operations.
- Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - Dynamic control, navigation, pressure compensated systems, low power systems.
- NOAA / Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory - Experiment design, sampling strategy, data analysis.
Lead PI: John Delaney, University of Washington
This is a design study implementing a series of interactive seafloor observatories (NEPTUNE) to investigate highly active plate tectonic and oceanographic systems located off the Washington-Oregon coast. A fully integrated understanding of the dynamic submarine processes associated with active volcanism, plate tectonic movements, ocean circulation, hydrocarbon fluxes at continental margins, formation of metal deposits, sediment transport, mitigation of earthquake hazards, and support of life in extreme environments, requires a long-term presence that monitors the changing systems of interest. The oceanographic and planetary-science communities are now in a position to make major scientific and educational contributions by establishing a series of strategically located, state-of-the-art seafloor observatories capable of supporting real-time transmission of data and images from many hundreds of instruments, routine robotic interventions and event responses controlled from shore-based facilities, and distribution of power to most components of the system. This vision can be enabled using a fiber-optic cable linking a series of seafloor nodes to shore and onto the Internet. The result of the study will be a comprehensive plan for national/international facility to be accessed by a wide range of users in a fashion analogous to a telescope, with the important distinction that there can be many users at any single time.
- University of Washington - Study coordinator; augmentation of the DEOS effort.
- Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - Engineering study and integration of engineering and science and components into the final publication.
- NASA / Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology - Support of the engineering and science-definition phases of the planning effort.
- NOAA / Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory - Marine robotics and deep submergence technology
Lead PI: Tommy Dickey, University of California, Santa Barbara
This study (O-SCOPE) addresses the need for next-generation autonomous, real-time, interdisciplinary (chemical, biogeochemical, and physical) long-term time series measurements in critical regions of the world’s oceans. The O-SCOPE study allows partners to formally work together to develop interdisciplinary instrumentation systems. These systems are being designed for future use on a global network of moorings. Scientific goals related to the development of the proposed technologies include quantification of (1) trends in biogeochemical and bio-optical variables, and (2) seasonal, interannual, and decadal changes in upper ocean biogeochemical and bio-optical variability and carbon fluxes; monitoring trends in “ocean health” in the form of chemical, biological, and optical indicators. This study can accelerate the implementation of a plan to instrument critical regions of the ocean with long-term interdisciplinary moorings. This study allows its partnership’s expertise and infrastructure to develop, test, and transition requisite next-generation technologies to the oceanographic community for long-term monitoring and research of biogeochemical and bio-optical as well as physical processes.
For more information on this project, click here.
- WET Labs – Integrated optical sensors specifically designed to provide bio-optical parameters in extended deployments.
- University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Study coordination; interdisciplinary systems including bio-optical, chemical, and physical sensors and telemetry technologies.
- University of South Florida (USF) – pCO2, pH, and alkalinity sensors.
- NOAA / Atlantic Oceanographic and Atmospheric Lab – Geochemical measurements, their verification, and their relation to global climate change.
- NOAA / Pacific Marine Environmental Lab – Geochemical measurements, telemetry, and data dissemination.
- Bermuda Biological Station for Research – Geochemical measurements.
- Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute – Geochemical measurements.
Lead PI: Bradford Butman, U.S. Geological Survey, Woods Hole, MA
This study is developing and demonstrating a low-cost system for retrieving oceanographic data from instruments in the coastal ocean and delivering these data in near real time. This inexpensive real-time system takes advantage of recent advances in acoustic and radio frequency telemetry to reduce the cost and complexity of telemetering data from moored arrays. The development of these low-cost systems has the potential to provide observations from distributed arrays with multiple sensors on a wide variety of spatial scales. Such observations are needed to resolve key processes, for ocean prediction, to aid in developing optimal sampling strategies (particularly physical and biological studies), and for long-term monitoring. The system is demonstrated by transmitting Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) data from long-term monitoring sites in Massachusetts Bay.
- RD Instruments – Modifications of Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers to include acoustic transmission.
- Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - Coordination, acoustic and RF telemetry, buoy design, delivery of data over the Web.
- Massachussetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) – Ongoing support of long-term observations.
- United States Coast Guard – Collaboration on deployment system for navigation buoy, buoy tender time as necessary.
- United States Geological Survey in cooperation with MWRA – Coordination, demonstration at Massachusetts Bay mooring sites.