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International Scientists Showcase New Advanced Technology at Galway’s SmartBay Observatory

5th November 2021
The YUCO micro-AUV from French company SEABER
The YUCO micro-AUV from French company SEABER is designed for collecting oceanographic data in coastal environments Credit: JERICORI/Twitter

An international team of scientists has demonstrated new advanced underwater technology for ocean observation at the SmartBay Observatory in Galway Bay this week.

French company SEABER demonstrated the YUCO micro-AUV (or micro autonomous underwater vehicle) — an unmanned, untethered vehicle that collects oceanographic data in coastal environments. This data is important for monitoring our marine environment and changing ocean climate.

The SmartBay Observatory is one of Ireland’s national marine scientific research facilities, providing national and international researchers with the infrastructure to validate new marine sensors and instruments in real sea conditions.

Alan Berry, manager of marine research infrastructures at the Marine Institute, said: “The SmartBay Observatory is used to validate new sensor technologies, such as SEABER’s innovative and affordable micro-AUV system.

“New marine sensor technologies increase the accessibility and availability of data for organisations monitoring our oceans and in turn contributes globally to our deeper understanding of the oceans.”

SEABER were successful through the EU JERICO-RI European Infrastructure JERICO-S3 Access Programme to utilise the SmartBay Observatory in Galway Bay.

Over the coming months, the observatory will facilitate a further four international science projects demonstrating novel and improved sensor technologies on this unique Irish research infrastructure towards the common goal of improving data collection for marine and climate observations.

Michael Gillooly, interim CEO at the Marine Institute, said: “By facilitating advanced ocean monitoring technologies, the SmartBay Observatory helps to take concepts and prototypes from laboratories into the sea.

“New marine monitoring technologies and sensors generate more data than we have ever had before, improving our ocean observation capabilities and increasing our ocean knowledge.”

For more information visit www.smartbay.ie, @SmartBaySite on Twitter and @SmartBaySite on Facebook. For more about the JERICO-S3 access programme, see the project website.

The JERICO-S3 project received funding from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under grant agreements No 871153.

Published in Marine Science
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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.

 

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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)

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