Studying the Ocean in 3D

Understanding the 3D nature of the ocean is becoming a critical focal point of ocean research, but it can be a costly affair. Paired with Nortek current profilers, Del Mar Oceanographic’s Wirewalker is giving researchers worldwide a cost-effective way to answer vital questions surrounding the functioning of ocean processes. This information helps improve environmental monitoring and climate forecasting, which in turn helps develop measures to adapt to our changing climate.

Since development began in 1998, researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography have paired the Wirewalker with several different instruments, including Nortek’s Aquadopp and Signature current profilers, which have provided critical, high-resolution measurements of current velocity.

The Wirewalker/Nortek combination has been used in several locations around the world, including by U.S. Office of Naval Research-funded projects in the Bay of Bengal, the North Atlantic and North Pacific, as well as by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography off the coast of southern California.

Commercial production of the Wirewalker started in 2015, and Del Mar Oceanographic is continually improving its usability for researchers, including accessibility to data captured by any instruments mounted on it. The company is currently upgrading the Wirewalker’s ability to transmit data to shore via GSM, VHS and the Iridium satellite constellation. In the future, it will also harness wave energy to power the instruments that the Wirewalker carries, further extending the potential duration of deployments.

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