Seven successful applicants were awarded funding under the Marine Institute's SmartBay National Infrastructure Access Programme (NIAP) following the 2018/2019 funding call.
The awardees will receive support of approximately €25,000 per project to trial and validate their technology and/or gain access to the relevant data feeds to carry out scientific research at the SmartBay Marine and Renewable Energy Test Site. The call was open to both academia and industry, and other relevant organisations, on the island of Ireland, to access the SmartBay test site and subsea observatory.
These awards will see organisations deploy equipment on the test site, connect to and access the underwater observatory, and analyse the many data feeds which are collected on site every day. Over the past seven years, more than 50 projects have been awarded funding, facilitating a wide range of multi-disciplinary marine research, development and innovation at this national facility.
Welcoming the announcement, Dr Peter Heffernan CEO of the Marine Institute said, "The NIAP programme represents a great opportunity for both industry and academia to utilise continuous data feeds from infrastructure available at the SmartBay Test Site to prove novel technologies through deployments in real-sea conditions. A key output of the Marine Institute's Strategic Plan, guided by the Government's marine plan Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, is to support a thriving and sustainable marine economy.
These NIAP awards are aligned with the goals of the national Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017–2021."
This year the following projects were awarded funding:
|Lead Organisation||Project Title|
|Dublin City University||Demystifying the Ocean through Underwater Video Analysis: marine life activity detection, classification and indexing for the SmartBay ocean observation platform.|
|Sligo Institute of Technology||A Small Waterplane Area Twin Hulled (SWATH) Tide Buoy with Real-time Kinematic (RTK) positioning for Accurate (centimetre level) Tide Gauge Calibration.|
|Queen’s University Belfast||Can introduced marine infrastructure enhance the conservation of vulnerable species?|
|Dundalk Institute of Technology||Wave parameter estimation from oscillating water column pressure signal - Phase 2 Electronic optimisation of the WASP|
|Galway Mayo Institute of Technology||Environmental DNA/RNA metabarcoding for monitoring marine biodiversity in Galway Bay, with particular attention to marine Invasive Alien Species|
|Danalto Ltd||LoRaC2.4 - A geolocation technology for the marine environment|
|NUI Galway||Wave Resource Characterisation at the Galway Bay Marine and Renewable Energy Test Site|
The first projects are preparing for deployment and testing over the coming month. SmartBay is Ireland's national marine test and demonstration facility for the development of innovative products and services for the global maritime sector.
The National Infrastructure Access Programme is funded by the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme with the support of the Irish Government.
Follow @SmartBaySite for Facebook and Twitter updates on the projects throughout the year.
Follow @mifundingoffice for future funding opportunities.
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