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BlueWise Marine and MELOA support #SheCanDo

MELOA and BlueWise Marine are teaming with SheCanDo to perform a deployment of one WAVY Ocean Drifter in the sub-equatorial North Atlantic this winter. SheCanDo’s Karen Weekes is planning to cross the Atlantic, East to West, rowing all the way from the Canaries to Barbados, deploying one WAVY Ocean Drifter soon after departure.

The MELOA WAVY Ocean drifter is a new ocean surface drifter that was designed to track the motion of the water as it is carried by waves and currents with minimal wind sail effect. The drifter retrieves its position from GPS signals and carries a suite of sensors to measure near-surface water temperature and accelerations due to the waves, from which wave data is computed. It is programmed to periodically send data over to shore-based databases using the Argos satellite constellation.

The MELOA WAVY Ocean Drifter is ideally suited for studies of ocean circulation and wave-current interaction. It can also contribute to studies of climate and air-sea interaction. It is relatively small (about the size of a football) and light (~2.3 kg), making deployments and operations extremely easy to perform.

Following deployment close to the Canaries, the drifter is expected to follow the general surface circulation in the southern North Atlantic, i.e., continue drifting to the SW along the African coast heading to the Cabo Verde archipelago, before slowly turning west towards Central America or Northeastern Brazil, carried by the North Equatorial Current. It could reach Barbados, but we’re sure Karen will get there long before it does! The track of the drifter can be followed in real-time using the MELOA web geoportal.

For more information about SheCanDo and to support Karen Weekes, check out www.shecando2021.org.

For more information about the WAVY Ocean Drifter and the MELOA project contact Rogério Chumbinho, Senior Project Manager at BlueWise Marine, at rogerio.chumbinho@bluewisemarine.ie.