Neuston Project- 02.17.2014
Internal Reference: Mikra Zoa

Background- In the operating theater of the oceans, and actually any body of water, there exists small non-locomotive life occupying unique positions in layers throughout the water column. Given the proximity to the Sun and for various reasons, a relatively dense layer exists at the water surface. In comparison to other parts of the ecology, little is known regarding this critically important ecosystem component. Some research has been accomplished over the years. However, we now know it has only scratched the surface of this complicated ecosystem. Due to the fact that we will be working in this part of the ecosystem, indeed- this small life is moved about in the same way plastics and debris is, we must know as much as possible about neustons.

Project Objective- PH1- Assemble and analyze all known data sources and research on ocean and sea neustons performed to date. PH2: Perform new research, analysis, compile datasets, perform predictive analysis to expand on the knowledge of the neustons occurring in the oceans, seas, and bodies of water which Oceanamatica will be operating in. Research impact of shipping, industrialization, pollution, salinity changes, and climate changes on the neuston of the known datasets. PH3: Predictive models and analysis incorporating assembled data to create a model of future impact to the neustons.

M/M- Given the scarcity of the datasets, PH1 will be a relatively short analysis using data science and software not readily available before 2012. Using software from 'big data' vendors, compiling the disparate datasets will require industry standard scientific analysis and management of the quality, quantity, and viability of the respective datasets. PH2 will require new research, both lab and field, to determine; 1. the current health of the neustons in all oceans, 2. the size and frequency, 3. the correlating ecosystems, 4. all possible impacts of working in the neustons, 5. efforts and recommendations to protect the nuture the neustons.

Duration- PH1 04.2014-08.2014, PH2 05.2014-06.2016, PH3 06.2015-01.2017

Resources- Team of marine scientists, data analysts, researchers, support personnel, mobilisation and deployment assets, computational software and hardware.

Dissemination- Work will be published under joint authorship and offered to the public according to the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries.

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