Arctic Ocean - A Complex System:
Considerations for the Development of Instrumentation.
The Arctic Ocean, a vital component of the Earth System, is
little understood. Urgently needed progress in scientific exploration of
this “Mare Incognitum” requires a concerted effort in which scientific
instrumentation and the underlying technologies play an essential role.
Major advances in scientific understanding are often a consequence of new
plateaus reached in relevant technologies that enable innovative
instrumentation and data acquisition. A plethora of new, emerging programs
aimed at Arctic Ocean exploration offer a unique opportunity to capitalize
on necessary technology development. Important considerations are the
upfront coordination of the investment in the new technologies to assure
consistent quality, inter-operability, inter-calibration, reliability and
appropriate maintenance in remote, taxing operating environments, and last
not least user friendly data acquisition and dissemination. The most
important consideration however is that instrumentation must not be
developed in isolation and that development must be directed towards the
overall strategic goals of scientific exploration of the Arctic Ocean. New
directions in research that are emerging must be fully recognized in the
technology community. For the Arctic Ocean the evolving understanding is
that it is represents a holistic nature system, where innovative
interdisciplinary research, i.e. between biologists and climate scientists
will advance the understanding how large scale patterns of climate
variability have significant impact on associated ecosystems from
inter-annual to long term timescales. It is imperative that these trends
are recognized in instrumentation development in order for it to become an
integral part of the interdisciplinary research endeavors.
(Remus) or medium (Dorado/Bluefin/ABE) sized vehicles to transport
them to and from areas where detailed, near bottom survey and/or sampling
programs are necessary.