The oceans face several challenges connected to climate change, loss of biodiversity, overfishing, pollution and acidification. At the same time the ocean is key for increased production of food and renewable energy, subsurface storage of CO2, and other ecosystem services.
The twenty month long One Ocean Expedition provides a unique opportunity for scientists and students to explore and collect data on the status of the worlds ocean, and target specific key research questions such as CO2 exchange between the ocean and atmosphere and ocean acidification, the biodiversity of the world’s oceans, the amount and distribution of human impact on the oceans (pollution, noise, microplastics), in addition to data for verification of satellite observations.
Advanced research instrumentation
The One Ocean Expedition Scientific Committee has developed the expeditions science plan and integrated scientific instrumentation on Statsraad Lehmkul to support the scientific objectives of the expedition.
Before the expedition began in August 2021, the 108-year-old sail training ship was equipped with advanced research equipment that continuously collects data throughout the circumnavigation.
The installed sensors include online measurements of water quality and pCO2, scientific echosounders, camera systems, hydrophones, biological sampling gear and more.
In additon, the ship is stopped regularly so that water samples can be taken, which allow powerful modern techniques like eDNA analyses.
The Scientific Committee has also developed methods for dissemination of the observations to scientists and public from the vessel, and to establish national and international collaborations and recruit students to participate and collect data on the many legs of the expeditions.
The committee is lead by The Norwegian Institute of Marine Research, one of the biggest marine research institutes in Europe.
Comparable ocean data
The modern ocean research instrumentation collects comparable data from a wide range of environments. The quiet movement of a sailing vessel provides very good conditions for collecting high quality acoustic data from the upper ocean, both passive listening and active echo sounders.