High-Bandwidth Moorings with Profilers and Platforms

Shallow Winched Profiler Science Pods Installed

Cabled Moorings with Profilers and Platforms at the Cascadia Margin and Slope, and at Axial Seamount

Oregon Offshore Deep Profiler 2015

THe Oregon Endurance Offshore instrumented profiler travels down the wire on the Deep Profiling Mooring during its initial testing following installation. Credit: NSF-OOI/UW/ISS.V15, Dive R1859.

Profiler Science Pods Waiting to be Installed

A line of shallow winched profilers and instrumented platform interface assemblies await installation on  2-legged Shallow Profiler Moorings that provide real-time data on chemical, biological, and physical properties of ocean waters off the coast of Oregon. Credit. Deb Kelley, University of Washington, V15.

The UW Cabled Array team has designed and installed state-of-the-art paired moorings that provide real- and near-real time data to the global community over the Internet. The system hosts six of these new instrumented moorings that span water depths from 2900m to 600m at three different sites: PN1A- Slope Base (2900 m); PN1C - Oregon Endurance Offshore (600 m); and PN3A - Base of Axial Seamount (2700 m). Each mooring profiler and platform is powered by the cable and has 1 Gbs bandwidth (and up to 3000 watts power providing capabilities that allow for a broad suite of sensors. These sensors include real-time digital imaging and acquisition of high-bandwidth sonar and hydrophone data for biological applications. In concert, these instrumented platforms provide unparalleled spatial-temporal resolution on biogeochemical processes, ocean acidification, and other oceanographic processes operative off the Oregon-Washington coast.

The two types of cabled moorings include the following:

1) A Deep Profiler hosting an instrumented deep wire crawler (McLane) that measures ocean properties from ~3000 m to ~ 200 m water depth. Power and data transfer is provided to the Deep Profiler via an inductive couple. An extension cable running from a Low Power Junction Box  provide 375v power and 1GBs communications to the following instruments: 

  • CTD, Dissolved Oxygen, 3-D Single Point Current Meter -Temperature, and Fluorometers (CDOM, Chlorophyll-a, Optical Backscatter)

2) A two-legged mooring with a 200-m Platform (12 feet across) and an instrumented winched Shallow Profiler that travels from 200 m to just below the ocean's surface.  Power (375 v) and communications (1Gbs) is provided to this two-legged mooring via a Low Voltage Node. A science module (pod) on the 200-m platform, as well as the instrument pod on the winched profiler, is installed/recovered using a robotic vehicle. This means that the entire mooring does not have to be recovered each year, thus lowering operations and maintenance costs. The same is true for the Deep Profiler.

  • The 200-m Platform instruments include the following:
    • pH, Broadband Hydrophone, Fluorometer, CTD, Dissolved Oxygen, 5-beam ADCP, Digital Still Camera, and a150-kHz ADCP
  • The Shallow Profiler instruments include the following:
    • CTD, Dissolved Oxygen, Nitrate, pH, Optical Attenuation, Spectral Irradiance, Photosynthetically Available Radiation, Fluorometer - 3 wavelengths, and a Current Meter

In addition, a cabled Seafloor Instrument Array associated with the moorings will document near-bottom and water-column processes. The Array's instruments will receive power and communications through a Medium Power Junction Box. Instruments include the following:

  • 150-kHz ADCP, Broadband Hydrophone, Acoustic Modem, Optical Attenuation, CTD, Dissolved Oxygen, and a HPIES (Horizontal Electric Field, Pressure and Inverted Echo Sounder).

Shallow Profiler Platform

The 12 ft across, 7 ton platform rests 200 m beneath the oceans' surface on the Cabled Aray two-legged mooring. It hosts the instrumented Shallow Winched Platform, as well as an instrumented science module (Platform Interface Assembly), which includes a digital still camera and two ADCP's All data are now streaming live back to shore and as of March 2016, wach of the Shallow Winched Profilers has made >1600 cylces (9 times a day).