Underwater “Trail Camera”

Check out this new, underwater “trail camera” by SpotX that is triggered by a Vemco acoustic tag:

Similar to a wildlife trail camera, the Spot X underwater camera trap can trigger a camera based on a range of input stimuli. The first use-case triggers a GoPro Hero 8 Black using the ping recorded by a VEMCO/InnovaSea VR2 receiver. However the system is flexible and can interpret PWM, RS-232 or any other analog sensor signal, and can be customised to work with many other cameras.


CSIRO estimates millions of tons of microplastics on ocean floor

The CSIRO recently released a report estimating microplastic build-up on the ocean floor and the results are not good. Using an ROV to collect 51 deepwater samples from the Great Australian Bight in 2017, scientists determined that microplastics are sinking to the ocean beds, finding some areas of zero plastic particles but others with up to 13.6 particles per gram (an amount ~25 times larger than previous studies).

“We estimate there are up to 14 million tonnes of microplastics in the seafloor. It’s worse than we thought.”


More details at: https://www.csiro.au/en/News/News-releases/2020/14-million-tonnes-of-microplastics-on-seafloor

ROV finds very rare squid in Great Australian Bight

Scientists at CSIRO and Museum Victoria were thrilled to find not just one but FIVE “super rare deep sea squid” in the Great Australian Bight. This large fin squid, Magnapinna, has extremely long, thin tentacles and what appear to be tightly coiled filaments. Scientists believe Magnapinna can quickly retract its filaments if needed. The only other cephalopod known to have retractable filaments is the vampire squid (Vampyroteuthis infernalis):

Here is a close-up of a 4 to 6m long Magnapinna spotted by MBARI off Hawaii:

More details at: Sciencex.com 12nov20 and Science Alert 11nov20

ROVs Fixing Aquaculture Nets

Interesting technique to fix aquaculture nets with ROVs:

“Repairing a net is a skilled job requiring accuracy to undertake repairs and dexterity to ensure the repair provides net integrity and stock security. Underwater repairs to date have nearly always required the services of a diver. So why would you use an ROV system to inspect a net if you still need to get a diver to repair any issues? What if the ROV could undertake the net survey, affect a temporary repair and divers could then be used on a planned basis to permanently fix the net?”

Fishfarmermagazine 30sep20