The new pelagic operational observatory of the catalan sea (OOCS) for the multisensor coordinated measurement of atmospheric and oceanographic conditions
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The new pelagic Operational Observatory of the Catalan Sea (OOCS) for the coordinated multisensor measurement of atmospheric and oceanographic conditions has been recently installed (2009) in the Catalan Sea (41°39'N, 2°54'E; Western Mediterranean) and continuously operated (with minor maintenance gaps) until today. This multiparametric platform is moored at 192 m depth, 9.3 km off Blanes harbour (Girona, Spain). It is composed of a buoy holding atmospheric sensors and a set of oceanographic sensors measuring the water conditions over the upper 100 m depth. The station is located close to the head of the Blanes submarine canyon where an important multispecies pelagic and demersal fishery gives the station ecological and economic relevance. The OOCS provides important records on atmospheric and oceanographic conditions, the latter through the measurement of hydrological and biogeochemical parameters, at depths with a time resolution never attained before for this area of the Mediterranean. Twenty four moored sensors and probes operating in a coordinated fashion provide important data on Essential Ocean Variables (EOVs; UNESCO) such as temperature, salinity, pressure, dissolved oxygen, chlorophyll fluorescence, and turbidity. In comparison with other pelagic observatories presently operating in other world areas, OOCS also measures photosynthetic available radiation (PAR) from above the sea surface and at different depths in the upper 50 m. Data are recorded each 30 min and transmitted in real-time to a ground station via GPRS. This time series is published and automatically updated at the frequency of data collection on the official OOCS website (http://www.ceab.csic.es/~oceans). Under development are embedded automated routines for the in situ data treatment and assimilation into numerical models, in order to provide a reliable local marine processing forecast. In this work, our goal is to detail the OOCS multisensor architecture in relation to the coordinated capability for the remote, continuous and prolonged monitoring of atmospheric and oceanographic conditions, including data communication and storage. Accordingly, time series of measurements for a number of biological parameters will be presented for the summer months of 2011. Marine hindcast outputs from the numerical models implemented for simulating the conditions over the study area are shown. The strong changes of atmospheric conditions recorded in the last years over the area have altered the marine conditions of living organisms, but the dimension of the impact remains unclear. The OOCS multisensor coordinated monitoring has been specifically designed to address this issue, thus contributing to better understand the present environmental fluctuations and to provide a sound basis for a more accurate marine forecast system.
CitationBahamon, N. [et al.]. The new pelagic operational observatory of the catalan sea (OOCS) for the multisensor coordinated measurement of atmospheric and oceanographic conditions. "Sensors", Desembre 2011, vol. 11, núm. 12, p. 11251-11272.