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UK-IMON / IMarEST workshop aims for list of marine monitor priorities

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Dr. Bev MacKenzie

Dr. Bev MacKenzie

The jointly staged ‘UK-IMON International Workshop on New Monitoring Technologies: A Workshop to Prioritise Future Investment’, being held Tuesday 10 – Thursday 12 September 2013 and organised by UK-IMON (UK Integrated Marine Observing Network) and the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST) has a clear outcome in mind.

The last few years have seen a revolution in the range of platforms and sensors used for observing the marine environment. From autonomous gliders that can cross ocean basins to robotic systems capable of making in situ molecular measurements of microbes, there has been a step change in our ability to observe our seas and oceans.

At the same time the drivers for collecting a wider range of marine data at ever higher spatial and temporal resolution in UK waters are increasing.

“We are aiming to produce a list of priorities for future national or European investment, the Defra supported workshop aims to identify those technologies that can increase the efficiency and reduce the cost of (UK) marine monitoring over the next 5–10 years, ” explains Dr Bev MacKenzie. IMarEST’s Senior Technical Manager, one of the members of a strong organising committee.  “This is an ideal opportunity for the marine community to influence UK Government spend in the right areas. There are presentation opportunities open to organisations eager to share their thoughts, in addition to invited presentations from national and international experts, and interactive breakout sessions.”

A number of slots are available for lightning 5-minute presentations at the workshop. These will be fast paced, energetic and informative and are perfect for showcasing small projects, technologies and conveying quick ideas and inspiration. These presentations will be grouped into Lightning Rounds dispersed with other longer, invited, presentations featuring related topics and interactive breakout sessions.  To be considered for one of the lightning presentations, 250-word abstracts are invited, and must be submitted by 30 June 2013. Opportunities to display posters (A0) will also be available. Full information is on the IMarEST website at www.imarest.org/OurEvents/EventListings/UK-IMONNewMonitoringTechnologies/10-12September2013.aspx including a link for abstract submission.

Workshop themes include: conventional platforms (including ships, buoys, moorings, landers); autonomous platforms (including aerial, surface and sub-surface); sensors; and earth observation.

Participants from across all sectors of the marine community are welcome including technology developers and users, policy makers, industry and the scientific community.

Background to the workshop

Firstly, in Europe the Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires national assessments of environmental quality, based on measurements stretching from physics to fish and seabirds and from the ocean surface to the seafloor. Secondly, NERC-funded marine research programmes are exploring how the oceans and shelf seas will respond physically, ecologically and bio-geochemically to climate change and anthropogenic pressures over the coming decades. For example; how water masses cross the shelf break leading to deep ocean-shelf sea coupling and the size and fate of carbon dioxide absorbed by the global oceans and shelf seas. Finally, operational oceanography in support of activities such as marine weather and ocean forecasting, offshore energy production and operations (renewables and oil and gas) and search and rescue, for example, requires data about temperature, salinity, waves, currents and sediment transport.

Invited international experts will give overviews of specific themes to inform workshop participants, who will then review and prioritise the most promising new technologies. The intention is to follow up the workshop by writing and submitting proposals for funding of the top ranked technologies in order to promote their uptake into the UK integrated marine observing network (UK-IMON).

UK-IMON is a partnership between UK marine science organisations that have come together to ensure the delivery of critical marine information required for research, operational, commercial and policy purposes. The workshop is supported by the Society for Underwater Technology (SUT) and the Marine Technology Society (MTS), AND Planet Ocean Ltd and Wildlife Acoustics are amongst the sponsors.

Workshop Organising Committee

  • David Mills, Chair – Cefas, UK
  • Andrew Willmott – NOC, UK
  • Russ Wynn – NOC, UK
  • Henry Ruhl – NOC, UK
  • Tim Smyth – PML, UK
  • Jon Turton – UK Met Office, UK
  • Jo Foden – Cefas, UK
  • Adam Mellor – AFBI, UK
  • Bev MacKenzie – IMarEST, UK
  • Bill Turrell – Marine Scotland, UK
  • Anne Brazier – NOC, UK
  • Mark Inall – SAMS, UK

About the Institute of Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST)

The IMarEST is an international membership body and learned society for all marine professionals. The IMarEST (a registered charity) is the first Institute to bring together marine engineers, scientists and technologists into one international multi-disciplinary professional body. It is the largest marine organisation of its kind with a worldwide membership of around 15, 000 based in over 100 countries.

Working with the global marine community, the IMarEST promotes the scientific development of marine engineering, science and technology, providing opportunities for the exchange of ideas and practices and upholding the status, standards and expertise of marine professionals worldwide.

The IMarEST has a growing network of Corporate Marine Partners who benefit from a tailored programme to support each global organisation’s specific requirements. Packages provide companies with a competitive edge by investing in staff and supporting Initial and Continuous Professional Development, supporting local, national, or international promotional programmes, providing specialised recruitment solutions, accrediting training courses, creating bespoke networking events and providing company employees with access to one of the largest online knowledge resources – the IMarEST Virtual Library.

The IMarEST is a respected authority in every maritime country. It is a Non-Governmental Organisation with consultative status at the International Maritime Organization (IMO), observer status at the International Oceanographic Commission, and it has special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC), which facilitates its access to other international  intergovernmental meetings where its specialized marine expertise is of particular use, e.g., the United Nations meetings on Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction, the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) and the work of the International Seabed Authority on marine mining. It is a nominated and licensed body of the Engineering Council (UK), a member of the Science Council and has significant links with many other maritime organisations worldwide.

IMarEST runs a series of industry leading and technically excellent events and conferences as well as publishing internationally recognised publications: Marine Engineers Review (MER); Shipping World and Shipbuilder; Maritime IT and Electronics; Marine Scientist; and Offshore Technology. www.imarest.org

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