Mapping the Seafloor with Remote Sensing and Satellite Imagery

An Analysis of the Techniques and Benefits of These Methods
70% of the Earth is covered by water, but so far just 7% of it has been surveyed (Mars, Venus and the Moon are better surveyed). Hydrography as a science has changed dramatically since the first measurements were made by Alexander Dalrymple and James Cook with lead lines and sextants. Singlebeam echosounders were invented in the 1920s – a technology still used today for mapping the seafloor. This method of using echosounders can produce very high-resolution bathymetric data but the high operational costs and the slow working process make it economically unsuitable for covering large areas. However, with the ongoing expenses of... (read more)
2018-06-19 09:23:54

Keeping Fisheries Sustainable with Groundbreaking New Acoustic Technology

With fish and other marine life becoming increasingly important for feeding the growing human population, science-based fisheries management is crucial to keep stocks sustainable. How can acoustic-based scientific instruments contribute in this respect, while also opening up opportunities for interdisciplinary scientific research? To keep stocks sustainable, fishery scientists and managers need to understand the dynamics and structure of fish stocks, as well as the resources those fish depend on. What scientific instrumentation can be used in this respect? Echosounders can help us quantify the biomass and behavior of fish, as well as the plankton and/or krill that many fish species... (read more)
2018-05-30 03:22:15

Ocean Infinity’s Search for MH370 Ends

Ocean Infinity, a technology company specialising in collecting high-resolution seabed data, has announced that its current search for the wreckage of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 is shortly coming to an end. The aircraft disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on 8 March 2014 with 239 people on board. In January of this year, the Malaysian government agreed to pay Ocean Infinity as much as US$70 million, provided that the company would solve what has become modern aviation’s biggest mystery. During the course of its operation, Ocean Infinity searched and collected high-quality data from over 112,000 square kilometres of... (read more)
2018-05-29 11:54:59

Zooming in on Bathymetric Techniques

The study of the underwater depth of ocean floors is called ‘bathymetry’. The term originally refers to the ocean’s depth relative to sea level. Bathymetry is the underwater equivalent to topography, which actually makes it the cornerstone of hydrographic science. There are multiple ways to derive bathymetric information. Below are a selection of articles that zoom in on various bathymetric techniques, ranging from satellite-derived bathymetry – using multispectral satellite imagery – to airborne Lidar mapping. Improving Satellite-derived Bathymetry Using Spatial Regression Algorithms Bathymetry is traditionally acquired using singlebeam or multibeam echosounders. This method produces accurate depth measurements along transects but... (read more)
2018-05-29 11:40:48

WASSP Aims to Set New Standard in Multibeam Sounder Technology

WASSP is a professional multibeam sounder that delivers water column and seabed profiling with 224 beams, offering significant improvements in speed and accuracy over conventional singlebeam echosounders. The big brother of WASSP has now been launched in the F Series product range. The F3X, with additional processing and transmission energy, delivers additional performance at all depths while providing the same WASSP features and functionality in deeper waters, resulting in increased profitability for fishermen all over the world. Multibeam benefits With over 1,500 WASSP users around the world the company has constantly been asked to provide these features and functions for fishing in deeper waters. Fishing... (read more)
2018-05-22 10:30:43

Timo C. Gaida Wins Multispectral Challenge at GeoHab 2018

Timo C. Gaida from Delft University of Technology was recognised as the winner of the Multispectral Challenge at GeoHab 2018 for his research paper, 'A multispectral Bayesian method for improved discrimination performance of seabed sediment classification using multi-frequency multibeam backscatter data'. The three judges - Lloyd Huff, Jonathan Beaudoin and Chris Tiemann - selected Timo C. Gaida’s research paper among six submissions from universities from around the world. R2Sonic launched the Multispectral Challenge at GeoHab 2017, following the introduction of the Multispectral Mode available with R2Sonic Multibeam Echosounder Sonic 2026. Game-changer for bottom characterisation The new feature enables the collection... (read more)
2018-05-22 10:08:26

Successful Licensing of Canada's East Coast Geochemical Data

Fugro and one of its partners, Amplified Geochemical Imaging (AGI), have reported recent success selling licences for data from a frontier region offshore Canada. The data was acquired during a hydrocarbon seep survey, heat flow and geochemical coring campaign in the large Orphan Basin, situated on the continental margin of Newfoundland. The comprehensive data package is being licensed from both Fugro and AGI and includes multibeam echosounder data (bathymetry, backscatter intensity and water column), sub-bottom profiler data, heat flow measurements and shipboard geochemical screening analyses. Shore-based screening and advanced geochemical analyses, including biomarkers on select samples, are also included. Heat... (read more)
2018-05-15 10:38:49

Hydrographic Survey of Venice Inlet Channels

Sharing Knowledge to Make Data Available for Everyone
What does ‘hydrography’ really mean? IHO defines hydrography as a description of the physical features of the ocean in support of different marine activities. A recent paper shows how hydrographical datasets can provide knowledge that is useful for many different purposes, from marine spatial planning to environmental studies. The paper focuses particularly on the Venice lagoon, where history and modernity, and natural and anthropogenic factors are fused together in a complex system. In 2015, based on the key strategy of ‘once at sea in support of different activities’, the Italian Hydrographic Institute (IIM) and the Institute of Marine Sciences of... (read more)
2018-05-08 11:22:34

The Nippon Foundation-GEBCO Seabed 2030 Project: Defining ‘Mapping the Ocean Floor’

The Nippon Foundation-GEBCO Seabed 2030 project was officially launched by Mr Yohei Sasakawa, chairman of The Nippon Foundation, at the United Nations Oceans Conference in 2017. The project supports the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 14 - ‘To conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development’ - and will lead to a greater understanding of the ocean and its processes. The goal of the Seabed 2030 project is simple: to map the entirety of the world’s ocean floor by the year 2030. This ambition has undoubtedly caught the attention of the public and is a mantra that... (read more)
2018-05-01 10:25:32

The Making of RV Kronprins Haakon

New Norwegian Ice-breaking Research Vessel
Norway is a maritime country with a very long coastline, plus it is very much a polar nation with 80% of its sea territory and 45% of its land mass north of the Arctic circle. It is the only country with territorial claims both in the Arctic and the Antarctic. In spite of this, Norway has not had a purpose-built polar research vessel since Roald Amundsen’s Maud (1917), having instead relied on converted commercial vessels for such purposes. That has all changed, however, now that Kronprins Haakon has come into service. This article provides insight into the making of this new multi-purpose research... (read more)
2018-04-17 10:51:23
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