The NEPTUNE Canada Project, led by UVic, will install the world's first regional cabled ocean observatory in the NE Pacific in 2007-08. The 800-km loop of electro-optic cable, currently being deployed, will deliver 10kW power and 4Gb/sec communication to each of five seafloor nodes hosting over 200 sensors, in water depths between 100-2,800m.
NEPTUNE Canada (North-East Pacific Time-series Undersea Networked Experiments) is part of a Canada-US partnership to build a two-component regional cabled ocean observatory on much of the Juan de Fuca tectonic plate. UVic leads a consortium of 12 Canadian universities; the US Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) has contracted the University of Washington to install and operate its Regional Science Nodes array (http://ooi.washington.edu). Infrastructure funding for NEPTUNE Canada ($78.4M) comes the Canada Foundation for Innovation and the BC Knowledge Development Fund, with a further $20M of in kind support. With new funding through OOI, the US component will be operational by 2013.
Alcatel-Lucent, with subcontractors Texcel Technology and L3 MariPro, is contracted to design, build and install the infrastructure (cable, nodes, shore station equipment). OceanWorks, Vancouver, is building the junction boxes and NGK, Japan, is building a 400m vertical profiler. These and the nodes represent entirely new technologies. For more information, visit the NEPTUNE Canada/Alcatel-Lucent exhibit booth (#0314B).
VENUS, the Victoria Experimental Network Under the Sea, consists of two cabled arrays in the coastal waters around southern Vancouver Island. VENUS is live and has been operating for 19 months with the first array deployed in Saanich Inlet in February 2006. A node at 100m connects several instrument packages to the Data Management and Archive System at UVic, where images and live data feeds are broadcast on the VENUS web site.
A second VENUS array is presently being installed in the Strait of Georgia, west of Vancouver, and will be operational by the end of October, 2007. VENUS will support a wide range of coastal ocean research projects, including such diverse topics as benthic ecology, estuarine circulation, delta dynamics, and AUV navigation.
Please visit our booth (#0314D) featuring live seafloor camera feed and live data from Saanich Inlet, and return to the project web site soon for live data from the Strait of Georgia.