7 Instruments Experts Use To Monitor The Condition Of Our Oceans

Around 70% of our planet is covered with water. And of that, about 97% percent are oceans. This body of water is essential in oxygen production and climate regulation. It goes without saying how we should care about our oceans. Sadly, today, ocean pollution remains a pressing concern: Oceans hold an estimated 5 trillion pieces of plastic waste. To help check and document the condition of our oceans, experts use different ocean monitoring instruments and tools. In this article, we’re introducing seven of them.

Acoustic noise monitoring. Professionals use sound to probe our oceans — from topography to temperature to quality of marine life. Underwater listening systems (which can be equipped with other underwater multi-parameter devices) can also examine ambient noises and human-generated sounds. Sounds that are linked to industrialisation activities are claimed to affect marine life and their habitat negatively.

Corrosion monitoring. Along with pollution, corrosion can damage the durability and quality of marine structures and installations. Marine corrosion and further intensity with the influx of effluent from different industrial and agricultural activities. Experts rely on corrosion monitoring instruments to examine a surface’s resistance or ability to control corrosion.

Flow and current meters. The way ocean water flows and circulates affects the marine ecosystem and our planet’s climate as well. With ocean monitoring instruments such as flow and current meters, experts can gather data that can be used in different applications (e.g., determining the most efficient path for ships, getting guidance in ocean search and rescue operations, studying weather disturbances and phenomena). Flowmeters can also be used in other open channels such as rivers, estuaries, and harbor entrances.

PH sensors. Ocean professionals aren’t only concerned with pollution — they also monitor the rising acidity of Earth’s waters. When the pH levels of water rise, it can impair ocean life. When marine creatures die because of ocean acidification, it can cause a significant imbalance to nature. And its consequences can be felt in other aspects as well (e.g., food security, tourism). PH sensors designed for submersible probe systems allow experts to measure a certain area’s acidity level.

Sediment velocimeter. Monitoring suspended sediment in oceans is vital as it can reduce water clarity and block sunlight from reaching aquatic plants. A sediment velocimeter is designed to determine acoustic impedance caused by sediments. This instrument can operate down to 100 meters deep, and can be used in wired and autonomous mode.

Strain gauge loggers. Strain gauge loggers have various uses — they can monitor torque, strain, and stress, among others. Professionals measure pressure in the ocean through strain gauge sensors. These tools are especially helpful when it comes to supporting mission objectives, like sonar surveys and imaging sonar compensations.

Sub-bottom profiler. This instrument produces high-resolution images of sub-bottom stratigraphy of oceans and other bodies of water. It is equipped with the so-called Compressed High-Intensity Radiated Pulse (CHIRP) technology, which is a more advanced iteration of sonar technology (used in locating objects in the ocean using acoustical waves). Experts also utilise this profiler to perform geo-hazard surveys, dredging surveys, mine hunting, pipeline and cable location, and sediment classification among others.

Swale Technologies is one of the leading suppliers of ocean monitoring instruments. If you need an underwater multi-parameter or other devices, contact us today!