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Biofouling Reduction on Optical Systems

Objective



The objective is to develop strategies to reduce marine fouling on optical underwater instrument.s to permit both measurements of a flux (for example, for fluorimeter, transmissometer and turbidostat applications) and to facilitate optical imaging (underwater cameras).
Such developments will permit greater integrity of data collection from various platforms (i.e. fixed structures, floating buoys, moored buoys, unmanned underwater vehicles, benthic landers) used in extended deployments for oceanographic monitoring of the current state of the marine environment, and for the observation of environmental changes. The developments will also permit longer periods of deployment between maintenance, thus reducing the cost of monitoring. The protection of camera viewing systems against biofouling has applications in the inspection of structures and subsea installations, as well as for oceanographic and marine environmental monitoring.
The proposed project involves 6 partners in 4 countries and the proposed research consists of 10 integrated Tasks over 30 months.
Since the requirements for flux measurement differ from those of imaging, two Tasks concern the development of Technology Requirement for optical oceanographic sensors involving flux measurements and separately a Technology Requirement for underwater viewing. These Tasks also include comprehensive sets of trials on instruments/cameras without and with the best evolving strategies for reducing biofouling which will emerge from other Tasks. One of the Tasks concerns a wide ranging research programme on optical coatings with the aim of resisting microfouling and biofilm formation. A parallel Task concerns an investigation of the potential for specialist glass materials. Given the complexity of the marine fouling problem it is unlikely that a single technique by itself will be completely successful. Consequently other Tasks involve studies of chemical, mechanical and electrical strategies to assist the reduction of biofilm formation and its removal. These methods will also be limit.ed in their application due to the frequent. need for minimum power consumption. A further Task considers the nature of biofilm formation on appropriate substrates over a wide range of environmental conditions The environmental risk, economics and industrial risk of the best candidate strategies will be considered within a separate Task and, in the final Task, guidelines will be developed for the protection of optical systems against marine fouling for a range of missions.
The proposal includes partners who would be capable of further development and exploitation of marketable technologies emerging from the research.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

UNIVERSITY OF GLASGOW
Address
University Avenue, James Watt Building
G12 8QQ Glasgow
United Kingdom

Participants (7)

IFREMER - Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer
France
Address

29280 Plouzane
INSTITUTO SUPERIOR TECNICO
Portugal
Address
Avenida Rovisco Pais
1049-001 Lisboa
Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek
Netherlands
Address
97,
1780 AB Den Helder
Simrad Ltd
United Kingdom
Address
Balgownie Road
AB22 8GT Aberdeen
UNIVERSITY OF LONDON
United Kingdom
Address
Marine Parade
KA28 0EG Millport,isle Cumbrae
Université de Bretagne Occidentale
France
Address
3 Rue Des Archives
29269 Brest
Université de Montpellier I
France
Address
5 Boulevard Henri Iv
34006 Montpellier