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Towards Naples Ecological REsearch for Augmented Observatories (NEREA): The NEREA-Fix Module, a Stand-Alone Platform for Long-Term Deep-Sea Ecosystem Monitoring

1
Department of Life and Environmental Science, Polytechnic University of Marche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
2
Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, 80121 Naples, Italy
3
Instituto de Ciencias del Mar, CSIC, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
4
Institute of Marine Sciences, CNR, 19032 La Spezia, Italy
5
SARTI Research Group, Electronics Department, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, 08800 Vilanova i la Gertru, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
This paper is an extended version of our paper published in 2019 IMEKO TC-19 International Workshop on Metrology for the Sea; Fanelli et al., NEREA, the Naples Ecological REsearch for Augmented observatories: Towards an end-to-end transdisciplinary approach for the study of marine ecosystems; In Proceedings of the IMEKO TC-19 International Workshop on Metrology for the Sea (MetroSea 2019), Genoa, Italy, 3–5 October 2019.
These authors contribute equally.
Sensors 2020, 20(10), 2911; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102911
Received: 15 April 2020 / Revised: 14 May 2020 / Accepted: 19 May 2020 / Published: 21 May 2020
Deep-sea ecological monitoring is increasingly recognized as indispensable for the comprehension of the largest biome on Earth, but at the same time it is subjected to growing human impacts for the exploitation of biotic and abiotic resources. Here, we present the Naples Ecological REsearch (NEREA) stand-alone observatory concept (NEREA-fix), an integrated observatory with a modular, adaptive structure, characterized by a multiparametric video-platform to be deployed in the Dohrn canyon (Gulf of Naples, Tyrrhenian Sea) at ca. 650 m depth. The observatory integrates a seabed platform with optoacoustic and oceanographic/geochemical sensors connected to a surface transmission buoy, plus a mooring line (also equipped with depth-staged environmental sensors). This reinforced high-frequency and long-lasting ecological monitoring will integrate the historical data conducted over 40 years for the Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) at the station “Mare Chiara”, and ongoing vessel-assisted plankton (and future environmental DNA-eDNA) sampling. NEREA aims at expanding the observational capacity in a key area of the Mediterranean Sea, representing a first step towards the establishment of a bentho-pelagic network to enforce an end-to-end transdisciplinary approach for the monitoring of marine ecosystems across a wide range of animal sizes (from bacteria to megafauna). View Full-Text
Keywords: stand-alone observatory; optoacoustic imaging; ecological monitoring; remote data transmission; Artificial Intelligence stand-alone observatory; optoacoustic imaging; ecological monitoring; remote data transmission; Artificial Intelligence
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Fanelli, E.; Aguzzi, J.; Marini, S.; del Rio, J.; Nogueras, M.; Canese, S.; Stefanni, S.; Danovaro, R.; Conversano, F. Towards Naples Ecological REsearch for Augmented Observatories (NEREA): The NEREA-Fix Module, a Stand-Alone Platform for Long-Term Deep-Sea Ecosystem Monitoring . Sensors 2020, 20, 2911.

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