An underwater glider has been put into operation in Madeira archipelago waters by a group of technical specialists from PLOCAN, in collaboration with scientists and technicians from Madeira Ocean Observatory (OOM) and Instituto Hidrográfico Portuguese Navy on board the ship NRP-Zaire of the Portuguese Navy.
The initiative is framed into the EU-project AtlantOS-H2020, which PLOCAN participates as a partner, as regional contribution to international programs and the European Strategy on Atlantic Ocean Observation, fostered through the Macaronesian Marine-Maritime Monitoring Network (R3M).
The main goal of the mission is to collect biogeochemical data of seawater through sensors of temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, pigments (chlorophyll) and particulate matter (turbidity) between the surface and the first thousand meters deep of the water column, along a section of approximately 500 nautical miles that elapses between the archipelagos of Madeira, Salvagens and Canary Islands.
The data, expected to be collected during the mission, should help to improve the characterization of the oceanic water masses in the study region, which at the same time will increase the quality forecasting models of ocean circulation and its derived products for all institutions and government agencies as final users, such as the Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO), Everyone’s Gliding Observatories (EGO), among others.
The mission can also be followed in real time through the PLOCAN glider portal.