Periodic Reporting for period 2 - MELOA (Multi-purpose/Multi-sensor Extra Light Oceanography Apparatus)
Reporting period: 2019-01-01 to 2020-02-29
The overall objective of MELOA is innovate the current market of in-situ measurement systems for marine environments, by providing a low-cost and easy-to-handle solution for in-situ water related data acquisition, in the form of the WAVY drifters family of products. In fact, most ocean drifters developed to date have focused on either the characterization of sub-surface currents, or on superficial currents, but with a strong influence from the wind on the drifter itself. MELOA is trying to solve the problem of minimizing exposure to wind (the so called ""sail-effect"") in order to get a more accurate description of the movement of the water, while maintaining good power and communications capabilities (either via mobile networks or via satellite) for the transmission of data to shore.
On another note, drifters are usually not designed to withstand the very harsh conditions of nearshore and littoral ocean circulation (i.e. circulation happening at the coast, including the breaking of waves and the motions verified in the surf zone). MELOA is developing products that can sustain high accelerations and impacts, thus are ideal to measure and quantify properties of motion in these extreme locations. This is a tremendous achievement and will have several important applications, such as (just to name one) an accurate description and visualization of water movement in beaches, which in many cases constitute hazards to unaware beach goers."
At smaller scales, the drifters have already caused enthusiasm in local or specific communities, such as surfers, beach authorities or even the common citizen. Outreach activities, along with dissemination events and with the help of the Advisory Board, have made a wide range of potential users aware of what MELOA is working on and their interest has been evidenced in the many requests for more information, and the leads for future collaboration, that have been received by the project. In the coming year, the partnership is committed to continue this dissemination effort and to develop a family of products that will meet their expectations.