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Project title and acronym

Early Detection of Increased Seismic Activities – EDISA

Host facility

PYLOS

Modality of Access

MoA2 – Partially remote (the presence of the user is required at some stage, e.g. for installing and uninstalling an instrument)

Description

Earthquake-warning systems are based on networks of seismic instruments. Depending on how far from the epicenter you are located such systems can provide ahead warnings of some seconds to minutes which gives limited time to save lives and property. If the earthquake takes place close to land and creates a tsunami losses can become enormous even if advanced well functioning warning systems are in place. The earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan in 2011 is an example of this.

Monitoring CO2 efflux has demonstrated to be a useful tool to forecast precursory signals of volcanic eruptions and seismic events several days ahead of an eruption/earthquake (Padron et al. (2008)).

In this TNA application we propose to combine multi level, gradient measurements of pCO2 and O2 close to the bottom to investigate if this could be an efficient method to quantify and distinguish between “normal” mainly biologically driven processes at the sediment-water interface and events with CO2 dominated release driven by seismic activities.

Similar methods were successfully used and described in Atamanchuk et al. (2015) in a project called QICS where CO2 was deliberately released 10 m below the sediment-water interface to simulate leakage from an underwater CO2 storage site. Multi-parameter measurements (currents, tides, salinity, temperature and particles) in general and pCO2 and O2 in particular combined with multivariate statistical analyzing of the data turned out to be powerful tools to distinguish between natural processes and man-made caused by the CO2 release.

Because of frequent seismic activities the Pylos site should be adequate for methodological development of an early warning earthquake system. In addition the bottom node of the Pylos observatory is already equipped with an Aanderaa SeaGuard instrument to which multiple clusters of CO2 and O2 optodes as well as other sensors can be “plug and play” connected and logged. Furthermore the bottom platform hosts two IR based sensors that measure pCO2 and CH4 one time per day, the former will serve for quality control of the pCO2 optodes. Two advantages of using optode technology are compact size and low power consumption. This opens for connecting multiple nodes to the same battery powered instrument and sample the sensors at high frequency, e.g. every 1 s for shorter periods every hour (advanced sampling schemes is a built in feature in the SeaGuard instruments).

The rationale of placing sensors at different levels just above (0-2 m) the seafloor is that when there is consumption/production of e.g. O2 and CO2 a gradient will be formed that can be used to calculate the consumption/production rates. To do this a transport coefficient (eddy diffusivity) is needed. We suggest estimating this coefficient from periods of fast sampling of the existing Doppler Current Sensor and of multiple highly sensitive pressure sensors placed at different levels.

Another critical aspect is to measure small gradient so that the O2 and pCO2 optodes have to be well intercalibrated, within 1 uM and 2 uatm respectively. We suggest to do this by occasionally placing the sensors at the same level using a simple elevator mechanism that is activated by a simple timer.

If successful this methodological development will not only advance the possibilities of creating compact long-term deployable early warning systems for earthquakes it will also open new possibilities for estimating metabolic rates of sediments.

– Atamanchuk A. et al. (2015) Detection of CO2 leakage from a simulated sub-seabed storage site using three different types of pCO2 sensors. International Journ. Green House Gas Control, 38: 121-134.

– Padron et al. (2008) Changes in the Diffuse CO2 Emission and Relation to Seismic Activity in and around El Hierro, Canary Islands. Pure appl. Geophys., 165: 95–114.


Project title and acronym

Increase available power on oceanographic buoy and transmit AIS message with selected buoy parameters (INPOW-AISPAR)

Host facility

PYLOS

Modality of Access

MoA2 – Partially remote (the presence of the user is required at some stage, e.g. for installing and uninstalling an instrument)

Description

Using moored oceanographic buoys as platform for a wide range of sensors measuring meteorological, oceanographic and biological parameters frequently provides excellent input to long term planning purposes as well as day to day operational issues (weather forecasting, red tide or oil in water incidents). However, many modern and sophisticated sensors demand access to more power. Also from an operational point of view it will be beneficial to increase the available power on the buoy, thereby reducing the number of planned maintenance surveys and thus reducing the project cost.

In order to increase the available power from the buoy, we will implement the following tasks:

  • One half of the existing buoy hull will be replaced by a new hull containing fuel cells.
  • For the fuel cell system we will test/verify the output, including performance in hot weather. A new water based cooling system will be developed and tested.
  • Wind turbine and its performance will be tested
  • A new software enabling “intelligent monitoring” (i.e. automatic change to various configurations controlled by a pre-set criteria)…to increase user value and possibility of saving energy.

In addition, the oceanographic buoys may be equipped with an AIS (AtoN) unit to notify passing vessels about the buoy position to minimize the risk of interference. The message from the AIS unit may in addition contain selected parameters measured by the buoy, thus passing vessels may get information on winds, waves and currents as measured by the buoy. The AIS message is also accessible by the general public, who may use the buoy information for their professional need as well as for recreational purposes.

By implementing the AIS message with ID 8 in the data logger software, this goal may relatively simply be achieved. The message format is fixed and may accommodate the following parameters:

Wind (speed, direction, gust), air temperature, humidity, dew point, air pressure, visibility, water level, current profile (speed, direction), waves (height, period, direction), water temperature, precipitation and salinity. The total number of parameters is about 30.