18th December

INFOMAR busy on strategic and research fronts

K. Verbruggen, GSI & Tommy Furey, MI

INFOMAR, the national marine mapping programme, run jointly by Geological Survey of Ireland and Marine Institute has had its busiest ever ‘quiet season’

Traditionally the programme is flat out on data acquisition from April to October and hosts its annual seminar and workshops at year-end, leaving time for planning and preparation in the early New Year.

But 2013 has seen a flurry of activity in addition to survey preparation and planning, with the INFOMAR data and team members appearing in many and varied locations.

INFOMAR busy on strategic and research fronts

Caption:

Read more: INFOMAR busy on strategic and research fronts

INFOMAR reports successful start of the survey season

F. Sacchetti, T. Furey, MI

Since the beginning of April, the INFOMAR team has been extremely busy with survey activities and data acquisition.

Survey operations, carried out onboard the R.V Celtic Voyager commenced off the Cork coast between Ballycotton and Youghal, shoreward of the coverage attained in previous years.

9.3RD INFOMARgure 1final

Extent of multibeam coverage achieved during the survey

The area forms part of the INFOMAR South Priority Area (SPA), stretching from Mizen Head in the southwest to Carnsore Point in the northeast. Survey operations alternated between the inshore area and an offshore block south of Waterford (Figure 1). The priority Bays of Youghal and Dungarvan were partially surveyed with dramatic seabed morphology imaged.

Read more: INFOMAR reports successful start of the survey season

Canadian Ambassador visits RV Celtic Explorer at Galway docks ahead of transatlantic survey

Cushla DromgoolRegan, Marine Institute

Irish and Canadian scientists have joined forces on a transatlantic survey on-board the Irish National Research Vessel, RV Celtic Explorer to carry out fisheries research in the Newfoundland and Labrador Seas.Dr Peter Heffernan, MI; Dr George Rose, Memorial University of Newfoundland and Canadian Ambassador to Ireland, his Excellency Loyola Hearn on board RV Celtic Explorer

Dr Peter Heffernan, MI; Dr George Rose, Memorial University of Newfoundland and Canadian Ambassador to Ireland, his Excellency Loyola Hearn on board RV Celtic Explorer

The aim of this research is to locate ‘hot spots’ of smaller mid-water fish, such as lanternfish (Myctophidae) and begin to understand their distribution. Canadian Ambassador to Ireland, his Excellency, Loyola Hearn, visited the vessel at Galway Docks on April 15 to meet the Irish and Canadian collaborators in this transatlantic expedition.

Read more: Canadian Ambassador visits RV Celtic Explorer at Galway docks ahead of transatlantic survey

Political vision and funding the way forward says ocean energy expert

Andrew Parish has over 20 years experience in a variety of areas including energy, environment, innovation, new product development and business management. He has been a director of Tonn Energy Ltd for the past four years, and after six years as CEO of Wavebob Ltd, decided recently to step down to develop other businesses “that will serve the sector“.  He remains as an advisor to Wavebob Ltd, and provides support and advice to small business through his company Parish Consulting.

8.4renewable energy Parish edited 2

On the final day of ICOE 2012, Inshore Ireland caught up with him for a brief ‘snapshot’ of the ocean energy sector in Ireland.

Has the ICOE conference been worthwhile?

My feelings are mixed. At one level it’s been very positive to see such a large community coming together in Dublin - 900 people all focused on wave and tidal energy. It’s positive also seeing the emergence of a supply chain, as well as utilities, technology developers, and service and component suppliers.

That’s all good, and a sign that the sector is maturing. But, there’s still no money. We’re all here with an expectation and a passion to drive a new industry; however the missing ingredient is the financial engine which would actually allow us to do real commercial business.

Read more: Political vision and funding the way forward says ocean energy expert

INFOMAR survey operations 2012

Eoin MacCraith, GSI

The 2012 survey season comprised a mixture of collaborative work and progress for the national mapping project. With four survey vessels at work by the end of the season on behalf of the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute (MI), bathymetric and geophysical coverage of the seafloor was significantly extended in a number of locations around the Irish coast.

RV Cosantóir Bradán and RV Keary alongside in Crosshaven. Note the tow-mount for the multibeam sonar on on the Cosantóir Bradán which is in the raised position

RV Cosantóir Bradán and RV Keary alongside in Crosshaven. Note the tow-mount for the multibeam sonar on on the Cosantóir Bradán which is in the raised position

Dundalk Bay was the first area to be surveyed at the start of the season as a continuation of the INISHydro INTERREG IVA project that had begun last year. INISHydro is a 3-year programme with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) in the UK as lead partners.

Read more: INFOMAR survey operations 2012

Challenging times prevailed throughout 2012 but positive signs too on the horizon

A brief look back at some of the key topics reported by Inshore Ireland throughout 2012 confirms that despite persistent energy-sapping doom and gloom in the wider media about the state of the economy, for the aquatic environment at least, there is reason for optimism.

In February we wondered if Our Ocean Wealth document heralded the dawn of Ireland’s long-hoped for ‘maritime era’.  For the first time it seemed that here at last was a government that   was taking the marine sector seriously by actually seeking public input into creating a maritime policy.

And sure enough to the surprise of many, the government followed up in July with the launch of Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth.

Read more: Challenging times prevailed throughout 2012 but positive signs too on the horizon

Spread the News