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Marine Science
Dr Peter Heffernan
Dr Heffernan has served as the CEO of the Marine Institute since 1993 and has held a highly successful role in building and leading the organisation. The semi-state agency has grown from a staff of one to 230, which now…
At the 2014 Ocean Wealth conference were (from left) Simon Coveney, TD then Minister for Agriculture Food and the Marine with Dr Peter Heffernan, CEO, Marine Institute, An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, TD, Miguel Margues of sponsor PricewaterhouseCooper and John Killeen, Chairman, Marine Institute
Tánaiste Simon Coveney has paid tribute to outgoing Marine Institute chief executive Dr Peter Heffernan for the “phenomenal impact” he has had on Irish and international scientific research writes Lorna Siggins. Dr Heffernan has been a “trailblazer, demanding political attention”,…
Artist’s interpretation of Carboniferous tetrapod from Scotland by Rachel Carr, copyright National Museums Scotland. Inset: Fossil amphibian bone from County Clare.
The fossilized bones of a tiny amphibian-like creature that scurried around the shores of County Clare 325 million years ago have been discovered by Dr Eamon Doyle, a geologist for the Burren and Cliffs of Moher UNESCO Global Geopark and…
Marine Minister Michael Creed
In the budget, Marine Minister Michael Creed has made provision for the Department’s Seafood Programme to increase by €5 million, to a total of €137.8 million. The provision, says Creed, will help fund vital investment in our fishery harbours, most…
Brown Trout
If there is one species to survive climate breakdown or transfer to a new planet, it is very likely to be the wild brown trout. Humans may think they have “superpowers”, but the trout (Salmo Trutta) beats us all, according…
Damian Foxall (left) with marine biologists Lucy Hunt and Niall McAllister
Two centuries after the “white continent” was recorded officially for the first time by an expedition led by Irishman Edward Bransfield, Kerry round-the-world offshore racer Damian Foxall plans to explore Antarctica by sail. Kerry-born Foxall will be accompanied on his…
New CEO - Dr Paul Connolly
Dr Paul Connolly has been announced as the Chief Executive Officer of the Marine Institute, Ireland’s state agency for marine research, technology development and innovation. The appointment follows the upcoming retirement of Dr Peter Heffernan after 27 years as CEO…
GMIT-Led Research Team Launches World’s First Shellfish Traceability Tool
Studies carried out by a research team led by Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) have resulted in the development of the world's first scientific-based shellfish traceability tool. This unique tool used ‘trace elemental fingerprinting’ of shellfish soft tissues and shells…
UK shipyard Cammell Laird located on Merseyside is where the newbuild RRS Sir David Attenborough is to be named at 2pm today. WATCH LIVE Link see below.
In the UK, the newest polar research ship is to be formally named the RRS Sir David Attenborough today by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The royals will follow tradition by smashing a bottle of champagne against the hull…
The ROV Holland 1 ready to be deployed at dawn from the RV Celtic Explorer
An Irish-led, international team of marine scientists on board the RV Celtic Explorer recently completed the third and final leg of an extensive offshore reef study using the Marine Institute’s remote operated vehicle (ROV) Holland 1. The 21-day expedition investigating…
Seven Successful Projects Set For Access To SmartBay Test Site Under Funding Programme
Seven successful applicants will be awarded funding under the Marine Institute’s SmartBay National Infrastructure Access Programme (NIAP) following the 2018/2019 funding call. The awardees will receive support of around €25,000 per project to trial and validate their technology and/or gain…
Breaching humpback whale off Cape Verde this past April
The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) sets sail this weekend for Cape Verde next month on its eighth humpback whale expedition. Funded by the Island Foundation, this two-week mission comes just months after the IWDG finally confirmed the breeding…
Marine Tech Firm Xocean Eyes Expansion To North America & Beyond
Louth-based marine technology firm Xocean is following its recent funding boost with plans to expand into North America and eventually Asia, according to business news site Fora. The company specialises in innovative robotics, particularly unmanned vehicles, and IoT technology to…
Solar Marine Energy chief executive and co-founder Eamon Howlin.
A Mayo based renewable energy startup Solar MarineEnergy is making plans to build Ireland’s first floating solar energy plant which it proposes to locate in Cork Harbour, writes the Irish Examiner. “We have secured permission from the Port of Cork…
NUI Galway researcher Dr Kathryn Schoenrock diving in a native kelp forest. She is appealing to citizen scientists to help find more examples of the rare golden kelp
Citizen science pinpointed the first samples of a rare kelp in Irish waters, and now NUI Galway researchers are hoping that sea swimmers, divers and kayakers may help to find more writes Lorna Siggins Samples of golden kelp (Laminaria ochroleuca),…
RV Celtic Explorer at the Port of Cork before departure
The RV Celtic Voyager departed early this morning (Thursday 1 August) from the Port of Cork on a multidisciplinary marine wildlife survey investigating the biological and oceanographic features of the 100m contour line between Cork to Galway. The survey team…

Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

At A Glance – Figaro Race

  • It starts in June or July from a French port.
  • The race is split into four stages varying from year to year, from the length of the French coast and making up a total of around 1,500 to 2,000 nautical miles (1,700 to 2,300 mi; 2,800 to 3,700 km) on average.
  • Over the years the race has lasted between 10 and 13 days at sea.
  • The competitor is alone in the boat, participation is mixed.
  • Since 1990, all boats are of one design.

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