The 5-year COMPASS project is on track to deliver a complete oceanographic network of monitoring buoys from west coast of Ireland to north-west coast of Scotland. These buoys are equipped with high-spec technical sensors gathering essential climate variable data on ocean temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, pH, dissolved CO2 and nutrients.
This has been ambitious task with many obstacles in the way including the logistics of procurement, deployment, accessing the buoys for upgrade/maintenance, mooring damage from Atlantic storms (including hurricane force gusts), general wear and tear from the unforgiving marine environment and not to mention delays in maintenance and servicing of sensors due to COVID-19.
The project partners – Marine Scotland, Scottish Association for Marine Science, Marine Institute and Agri-food and Biosciences Institute are finalising mooring upgrades this year and continue to service and maintain the buoys throughout the project to ensure they continue to relay oceanographic data for the COMPASS project. This collaborative network will contribute to long-term monitoring legacy for the three INTERREG regions.