By Caecilia Manago (ERINN Innovation) and Joel Pederick (Maritime Robotics), photos and video: Jorge Fontes (IMAR)
After two years of preparation, the Mission Atlantic Wave Glider was launched into sea on June 26 2023 in Faial Island, Azores (Portugal), with the kind assistance of Escola do Mar.
The Wave Glider is equipped with a variety of sensors (such as weather station (Airmar) and water speed sensors) and gadgets for measuring conductivity and temperature (Valeport CT Sensor), dissolved oxygen (Aanderaa O2 optodes), and partial pressure carbon dioxide (pCO2 optodes), as well as a pioneering fish tracking sensor (selected tagged species from Azores) that can provide novel insights into fish behavior and survival (Vemco).
See the Wave Glider launched into sea in the following video:
Video: The journey of the Wave Glider, by Jorge Fontes
The first course of the glider's mission will be from the Azores to the Canary Islands. From there, it will travel from Cape Verde to the Ascension Islands. Through its journey and data collection, the Wave Glider will contribute to the Mission Atlantic expected impacts in terms of assessment and modelling through pelagic mapping of ecosystem, resources and pressures: developing ecosystem assessments and forecasts, and increase understanding of vulnerabilities and risks including climate change; as well as contributing to better and more accurate monitoring, modelling, planning, management and prediction capacities in the whole Atlantic. A main goal of the Wave Glider is to generate 3D information on essential ocean variables (physical, chemical and biological) over the whole water column, as well as to map biodiversity, food provision and pressures over the Atlantic Ocean.
The Wave Glider Dashboard will be available soon on the Mission Atlantic Website. The data collected will be showcased in interactive dashboards. However, you can already track the journey of the Wave Glider: Check out the real-time location and the traveled path on the Wave Glider Map, by Fletcher Thompson (DTU)!