Observing Systems & Sensors
Observatories are becoming more popular for continuous, long-term monitoring of ocean and meteorological processes. These observation systems are stable platforms from which a variety of data such as water temperature, wave height, wind and current speed is collected and fed back to scientists for analysis.
Martha's Vineyard Coastal Observatory
The Martha's Vineyard Coastal Observatory (MVCO), located at South Beach in Edgartown, Massachusetts, provides real-time data on coastal oceanic and meteorological processes while contributing to a larger network of observatories along the east coast. Data is displayed through the internet, providing a means for public outreach and educational programs.
Related program, lab, group, or research site(s):
» Martha's Vineyard Observatory
Seafloor observatories continuously monitor ocean properties including currents, temperature and salinity. Nodes or sensors are located at the seafloor and different water levels in order to obtain a wide range of data.
Moored Observation Systems
Moored observation systems or buoys provide long-term oceanographic and meteorological data to scientists and the general public. Conductivity or salinity sensors are attached to moorings at different depths for comparative data. Moorings can also accommodate Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers (ADCPs) to measure currents through the water column. Data from buoys are available in real-time through the internet.
Optical and Acoustic Imaging Systems and Projects
These systems or projects provide pictures and maps of the seafloor so that scientists may obtain valuable information on hydrothermal vents, ocean processes or shipwrecks. Acoustic imaging is also used to determine biological activity within ocean waters.