The Land-Ocean Biogeochemical Observatory (LOBO) consists of robust moorings that can withstand tidal currents and weather. The moorings are highly configurable, can be deployed in waters as shallow as 0.5 m, are relatively easy to maintain, and accommodate a complete array of standard and novel sensors. The sensors communicate with an on-board controller which relays data to shore in near-real time. LOBO moorings have been simultaneously deployed and maintained since November 2003. Continuous hourly data of biological, chemical, and physical properties are relayed to shore, processed, and disseminated to users through a web interface in near-real time.

The instrumentation in the LOBO project is a combination of commercially available and ‘in house’ technology. Combined with a mooring system that allows for long term deployment and rapid data transmission through a wireless LAN, the sensors can return near-real time information for extended deployment periods.

Instruments deployed in the LOBO sensor array:


  • in situ ultraviolet spectrophotometer
  • measures the naturally occurring absorbance of UV light by the nitrate molecule

Oxygen Optode

  • Oxygen sensor from Aanderaa
  • Principle of measurement based on the effect of dynamic luminescence quenching by molecular oxygen


  • Conductivity (i.e. salinity), temperature, and depth.
  • We employ CTD’s from Sea-Bird Electronics (SBE-16plus and SBE-37) and YSI environmental (6600).

WorkHorse ADCP

  • Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler from RD Instruments.
  • Using sound waves, the ADCP can determine the current flow throughout the water column.



Jannasch, H.W., L.J. Coletti, K.S. Johnson, S.E. Fitzwater, J.A. Needoba, and J.N. Plant. 2008. The Land/Ocean Biogeochemical Observatory: A robust networked mooring system for continuously monitoring complex biogeochemical cycles in estuaries. Limnology and Oceanography: Methods, 6: 263–276.

Comeau, A.J., M.R. Lewis, J. Cullen, R.S. Adams, J. Andrea, S. Feener, S.D. McLean, K.S. Johnson, L.J. Coletti, H. Jannasch, S. Fitzwater, C. Moore, and A.H. Barnard. 2007. Monitoring the spring bloom in an ice-covered fjord with the Land/Ocean Biogeochemical Observatory (LOBO). Proceedings of the Marine Technology Society / Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Oceans Conference.

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