Page 23: of Marine Technology Magazine (March 2019)

Oceanographic Instrumentation: Measurement, Process & Analysis

Read this page in Pdf, Flash or Html5 edition of March 2019 Marine Technology Magazine

Richard Heard.

ter decisions.” The Phase 2 work hopes to address

Signi? cant ? ndings of the ? rst phase some of these concerns. Its main objec- work, which involved 16 science insti- tives are to, one, understand the role of tutes across Europe and eight oil major man-made structures as an inter-con- sponsors, included the discovery that nected hard substrate network across the protected cold-water coral Loph- the North Sea, two, understand the role elia pertusa on facilities in the northern of man-made structures as arti? cial

North Sea (notably, Thistle A and the reefs, and, three, provide ecological now derogated structure of Murchison) monitoring and assessment of man- could potentially be supplying lar- made structures as whole systems in vae that drift from these structures to the North Sea ecosystem. natural coral ecosystems off Norway. Heard says this work will be split

Speci? cally, these two structures seem into three threads: a data initiative, capable of supplying the Aktivneset a science program and a technology marine protected area, which had been program. A call will go out this year severely damaged by historical ? sher- for science projects. The data initia- ies activity, and which is now begin- tive with rely on industry support and ning to recover. It could be that this aims to gather and process existing is due to coral larvae drifting in from data, develop protocols, collect and

North Sea platforms. process new data, and develop data ac-

Phase 1 of the program looked at the cess products, eg. a portal. “We need to composition and biodiversity of ma- understand what data is out there. Is it rine life, from plankton to mammals. relevant to science? How do we get it

This included looking at plankton lev- from operators?” says Heard.

els and distribution before oil explora- Heard hopes that the industry will tion started up until now. It looked at help by providing data, but also access connectivity and reef effects and aimed to facilities for data collection, i.e. ma- towards being able to model eco-sys- rine life surveys, sampling and moni- tems to predict the effect of man-made toring, access to survey vessels and structures. ROVs for monitoring, and the deploy-

While Phase 1 helped progress the ment and collection of data acquisition understanding of the effects and con- tools. nectivity of man-made structures in The technology program will seek the North Sea ecosystem, some ground out low-cost data acquisition systems truthing is needed, says Heard, and and other technologies to enhance the more data is needed across the basin. data initiative.

MTR #2 (18-33).indd 23 3/12/2019 12:02:58 PM

Marine Technology

Marine Technology Reporter is the world's largest audited subsea industry publication serving the offshore energy, subsea defense and scientific communities.