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Beyond the Gulf: Real-Time AUV Tracking

Posted: January 30, 2019

The GCOOS data portal used to track Gulf glider missions in real-time has proven so popular and easy-to-use by glider operators that we’re now tracking other autonomous ocean-going vehicles in other locales. We’ve tracked a Navocean Nav2 Sail and Solar ASV being used to gather data in the Banana River Lagoon on Florida’s east coast.

Navocean and Turner Designs teamed up with FAU/HBOI researcher Dr. Jordon Beckler and 4Ocean to demonstrate mobile fluorometer data collection in support of new techniques to research red tide and other toxic algae blooms — including HABs in Lake Okeechobee — through the deployment of the Navocean “Nav2” vehicle, the first autonomous sail-driven surface vehicle to be used for inland algae monitoring.

Read full article here.

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Sail-powered research vessel launched into Lake Okeechobee to study algae blooms

Published: Feb 5, 2019 1:51 EST
FAU’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute launched its Navocean vessel Tuesday morning from the Pahokee Marina into Lake Okeechobee.It’s a sail-powered mini boat that will travel across the lake via determined plot points to collect data that will help researchers better understand harmful algae blooms.

They have already collected data off Sanibel Island for red tide. This time, they’re studying the blue green algae in the fresh water of Lake Okeechobee.

They’re looking for evidence of algae blooms in the water and examining additional environmental factors like water salinity, temperature and organic matter in the water.

Video and more info here.

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Harmful algae bloom monitoring via a sustainable, sail-powered mobile platform for in-land and coastal monitoring

Jordon S. Beckler 1*, Ethan Arutunian 2, Robert D. Currier 3, Eric Milbrandt 4, Scott Duncan 2

1 – Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University, United States,
2 – Navocean, United States,
3 – Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System Regional Association, United States,
4 – Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation, United States

Submitted to Journal: Frontiers in Marine Science
Specialty Section: Ocean Observation
Article type: Technology Report Article
Manuscript ID: 437032
Received on: 15 Nov 2018
Frontiers website link:  www.frontiersin.org

Abstract

Harmful algae blooms (HAB) in coastal marine environments are increasing in number and duration, pressuring local resource managers to implement mitigation solutions to protect human and ecosystem health. However, insufficient spatial and temporal observations create uninformed management decisions. In order to better detect and map blooms, as well as the environmental conditions responsible for their formation, long-term, unattended observation platforms are desired. In this article, we describe a new cost-efficient, autonomous, mobile platform capable of accepting several sensors that can be used to monitor harmful algae blooms in near real-time. The Navocean autonomous sail-powered surface vehicle is deployable by a single person from shore, capable of waypoint navigation in shallow and deep waters, and powered completely by renewable energy. We present results from three surveys of the Florida Red Tide harmful algae bloom (Karenia brevis) of 2017-2018. The vessel made significant progress towards waypoints regardless of wind conditions while underway chl. a measurements revealed HAB bloom patches and CDOM and turbidity provided environmental contextual information. While the autonomous sailboat directly adds to our HAB monitoring capabilities, the boat can also help to ground-truth and thus improve satellite monitoring of HABs. Finally, several other pending and future use cases for coastal and inland monitoring are discussed. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of a sail-driven vessel used for coastal HAB monitoring.

Full Manuscript Here

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Sailboat uses sensors, satellites to track red tide in Charlotte County

 

Published: December 27, 2017 8:31 PM EST
A sailboat launched Wednesday off of Algiers Beach to track red tide in Charlotte County.

WINK News reporter Tayor Bisckay explains how the boat uses sensors and satellites to provide real-time data of the algae bloom.

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Autonomous sailboat deployed to find red tide bloom

December 26, 2017
Pine Island Eagle
By MEGHAN McCOY

An autonomous sailboat was launched from Algiers Beach to map and take measurements of where the red tide is located and what kind of environment it feeds off of to better understand the bloom that has been near Sanibel since Thanksgiving weekend.

Dr. Jordon Beckler, Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium program manager of ocean technology research, Gabriel Rey, intern for Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium and Navocean Owner and Chief Designer Scott Duncan.

 “This is a company that we are working with, Navocean. They actually made the boat. We are just sort of the scientist consultants on it. We are trying to promote this awesome tool and trying to show how useful it is for our research. You could put any sensor on this sailboat that you want,” Dr. Jordon Beckler, Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium program manager of ocean technology research, said.

Before the sailboat was launched Navocean Owner & Chief Designer Scott Duncan did some tests from his iPad to make sure everything was working correctly. A chart on his device showed where they were located near Algiers Beach, and the six locations the sailboat would cover.

“We can reprogram its course,” he said of the fourth generation prototype. “We hope it will go out for three to four days. We are building up to 30 days and 60 days.”

Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation Laboratory Director Eric Milbrandt said the neat thing is they can see everything in real time.

“You send out a ship, a ship costs $20,000 a day, whereas this is much lower cost. You can find the patches and study them a lot more readily. And matching up with the satellite imagery is really important as far as telling people where it is and what the probability that it will kill fish and have respiratory irritation,” Milbrandt said.

 

read more here.

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Ocean acidification puts Northwest Dungeness crab at risk, research finds

Ocean acidification expected to accompany climate change may slow development and reduce survival of the larval stages of Dungeness crab, a key component of the Northwest marine ecosystem and the largest fishery by revenue on the West Coast, a new study has found.

The research by NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle indicates that the declining pH anticipated in Puget Sound could jeopardize populations of Dungeness crab and put the fishery at risk. The study was recently published in the journal Marine Biology.

Ocean acidification occurs as the ocean absorbs carbon dioxide from the combustion of fossil fuels. Average ocean surface pH is expected to drop to about 7.8 off the West Coast by 2050, and could drop further during coastal upwelling periods.

Dungeness crab is the highest revenue fishery in Washington and Oregon, and the second most valuable in California, although the fishery was recently closed in some areas because of a harmful algal bloom. The Dungeness crab harvest in 2014 was worth more than $80 million in Washington, $48 million in Oregon and nearly $67 million in California.

Read more here.

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In the spring of 2016 we worked with Mote Marine Lab in Sarasota FL to explore the potential benefits of operating in conjunction with their Slocum G2 glider deployment. We launched and recovered “Vela”, one of our prototype Nav2 ASV’s equipped with flourometer and CT sensors from the beach, off a skiff and from docks of opportunity using the vehicle’s thruster to navigate channels when required.

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On top of everything else, global warming could actually make the oceans louder. Seriously.

The world’s marine animals are up against some big challenges, including everything from climate change and ocean acidification to pollution and overfishing. And in the past several decades, conservationists have grown increasingly concerned about another threat, one that’s both pervasive and invisible in the water: the danger of sound.

Scientists and activists alike have pointed to a growing body of research suggesting that many marine animals rely on sound for communication, navigation and awareness of their surroundings — and that the noises generated by human activities, such as shipping, industrial work and military exercises, may be more disruptive to their natural habitats than we ever thought.

Now, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)  is helping to address these concerns with a new “strategy roadmap” — the first of its kind — for researching and managing ocean noise and its impact on marine life. The agency released the strategy in draft form last week and will leave it open for public comments through July.

Source: This is the Obama administration’s new plan to stop devastating ocean noise pollution – The Washington Post