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EuroSITES - Integration and enhancement of key existing European deep-ocean observatories

Summary information

Funding:FP7 - Collaborative Research Project - Small or Mediumscale Focused Research
Total cost:4750000
Ec contribution:3480000
Start date:2008-04-01
End date:2011-03-31
Duration:36 months
Coordinator:Richard Lampitt (
Organisation:Natural Environment Research Council, Swindon Wilthshire - United Kingdom
Themes:Abiotic changes; biological impacts; temperature changes; ocean current changes; deep circulation changes
Regio:Arctic; North Atlantic; Mediterranean Sea
Keywords:Open ocean observatories; biological, physical and chemical recordings
Project name:EuroSITES - Integration and enhancement of key existing European deep-ocean observatories
Project summary:Abstract
At present there are a number of fixed point observatories that autonomously measure biological, chemical and physical variables in the oceans around Europe. These operate at various levels of sophistication but in a largely uncoordinated and fragmented manner. There is no agreed set of basic variables and common data protocols are not followed.

EuroSITES has two main objectives:
- To enhance the existing deep ocean observatories thus forming a coherent European network. This will then provide a clear and relevant description of the time varying properties of the ocean system.
- To perform a small number of specific science missions that will, in the future, form the basis for greatly improved and novel monitoring capability.

The work we propose addresses directly and explicitly the vision of GEOSS. We will address this in the context of the time changing properties of the ocean interior, seafloor and sub seafloor around Europe.
EuroSITES will promote links with other international observation networks such as the network envisioned under the U.S. National Science Foundation's Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI).

Long-term time-series data offer some of the most important insights into the ways our oceans are changing. Crucially important processes occur on time scales that can not be observed by ships and in the deep parts of the ocean that are outside the reach of satellites. Sustained in situ observations are therefore required to provide high quality data on climatically and ecologically relevant variables at a few key locations. EuroSITES is the means to achieve this.