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New expedition finds deepest ever Irish corals.

Galway, 26th July 2017


A team of scientists have discovered the deepest known occurrence of a cold water coral reef known as Solenosmilia variabilis in Irish waters at depths of 1600m as part of a multiagency and university collaboration using video mapping with the Marine Institute’s Remotely Operated Vehicle ROV Holland I.


The SeaRover survey, led by the Marine Institute with the National Parks and Wildlife Services on the Commissioner of Irish Lights vessel ILV Granuaile gathered data for marine planning, habitat protection and measuring the effects of climate change.


The marine scientists travelled over 1000 nautical miles over three weeks along Ireland’s Porcupine Bank and continental slope collecting HD video, sample cores and biological specimens along the shelf edge from 50 locations.


“Some of the reef ecosystems and habitats we discovered have never been seen before and discovering S. variabilis at depths greater than 1600 m helps us establish a better understanding of the environmental conditions necessary for this species to thrive,” explains Chief Scientist David O’Sullivan, INFOMAR, at the Marine Institute.

“The deep-sea coral S. variabilis is widespread, normally seen at depths between 1000 to 1300 m on seamounts or rocky areas deep under the sea but only occasionally forms reefs. Its growth rate is very slow approximately one mm per year, so finding the reef structure, which is part of a fragile ecosystem thousands of years old, in deeper parts of the ocean is an important find for marine science.”


Solenosmilia variabilis

Sea pens, which visually look like a cross between a feather, a starfish and a fern are actually a form of soft coral were also found in the extreme deep sea environment. They sprout polyps from a stem-like centre. “With over 300 species currently known around the world they come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colours — we have seen a wide variety of forms on this survey and can only give species names to very few as many are likely to be new to science and have yet to be described,” explained Dr Yvonne Leahy, National Parks and Wildlife Service. “There are undoubtedly many more unidentified species out there and we ourselves have observed some specimens that require closer examination to properly identify”.


The scientists have been using the Marine Institutes’ Holland 1 ROV to map the distribution and extent of deep water reefs and associated habitats, as well as using high-resolution bathymetric maps produced under the national seabed mapping programme, INFOMAR, a joint Marine Institute - Geological Survey of Ireland initiative. The bathymetric data which shows the depths of the ocean has been key in identifying specific seabed features such as submarine canyons, escarpments and mounds where reef habitats are likely to occur.


The SEA-Rover survey (Sensitive Ecosystem Assessment and ROV Exploration of Reef Habitat Survey) is jointly funded by the Irish Government and the EU through the European Maritime Fisheries Fund (EMFF) and National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) to undertake further mapping surveys of offshore reefs with the aim of to evaluate status and review requirements for conservation and management measures consistent with the Habitats Directive.

The project is co-managed by the INFOMAR programme and Fisheries Science and Ecosystem Services (FEAS) at the Marine Institute and National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS). While the project objectives are primarily policy driven, the collection of data and scientific benefit will also be of immense benefit to the national and international research community.


The ROV robotic arms were also used to collect biological specimens for NUI Galway’s Science Foundation of Ireland (SFI) funded project ‘Exploiting and Conserving Deep Sea Genetic Resources’ and will also give new information on where sensitive species are found to help research at University of Plymouth’s Deep Sea Conservation Unit to predict where high value ecological areas might be found offshore Ireland and the wider North East Atlantic.


“The biological samples will help us understand the connectivity of different cold-water coral reef habitats, which will ultimately help with their future management,” said on board senior scientist Dr Kerry Howell from Plymouth University Deep Sea Conservation Unit.


ENDS
For more information contact
Lisa Fitzpatrick, Communications Manager, Marine Institute lisa.fitzpatrick@marine.ie / 087 2250871

Cushla Dromgool-Regan, Marine Institute Cushla.dromgoolregan@marine.ie 091 387200

 

Further information:
The Habitats Directive (EC 92/43/EEC) requires that member states take measures to avoid deterioration of protected habitats and this study will ensure that Ireland is evaluating the status of these offshore habitats. Under the Habitats Directive reporting requirements, Ireland has reported to the European Commission on the status of Annex 1 reef habitat.


The project team includes Chief Scientist David O’Sullivan (INFOMAR – Marine Institute); Dr Yvonne Leahy (National Parks and Wildlife Service), Helen McCormick (Marine Institute), Louise Healy (Marine Institute), Felim O’Toole (MSc. in Coastal and Marine Environments: Physical Processes, Policy and Practice at NUI Galway), Dr Kerry Howell (Deep Conservation Research Unit at Plymouth University Marine Institute), Dr Rebecca Ross (Deep Sea Conservation Research Unit at Plymouth University Marine Institute), Zara Cleere (Marine Institute) [Not on board], Dr Janine Guinan (INFOMAR-Geological Survey of Ireland), Dr David Lyons (National Parks and Wildlife Service), Dr Leonie O’Dowd (Marine Institute), Thomas Furey (INFOMAR-Marine Institute), Eimear O’Keeffe (INFOMAR-Marine Institute).

(Back L-R) Helen McCormack, Yvonne Leahy, David O'Sullivan, Zara Cleere, Louise Healy.
(Front L-R) Felim O'Toole, Kerry Howell and Rebecca (Bex) Ross.


INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland's MArine Resource) is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute, funded by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment. The INFOMAR programme is one of the largest civilian seabed mapping projects in the world and is acquiring high resolution seabed data that contributes to the sustainable development of Ireland’s marine resource.

Published:26/07/2016
Page Type: Web page

Geoscience and Marine research and travel funding under US Fulbright scheme, sponsored by GSI and MI

1st September 2016


The Fulbright Commission has now launched the 2017-2018 Fulbright Irish Awards competition. These globally-recognised Awards support Irish and E.U. citizens to undertake postgraduate study, research or teaching in the USA for a 3-12 month period.


Fulbright Awards, operating between the US and 155 countries, provide a monetary grant, accident and emergency insurance, visa administration, cultural and professional programming, and ongoing support. Candidates from all disciplines are welcome to apply.


This year the Fulbright Commission partners with the Health Research Board to launch the Fulbright-HRB HealthImpact Awards, which will support Health Professionals to conduct short-term study or research in the USA for a 3-6 month period.


While the General Student and Scholar Awards are open to all disciplines, there are a number of additional sponsored Awards on offer in the fields of Geoscience, Marine Studies, Agriculture, Environmental Protection, Business Innovation and Law. The Foreign Language Teaching Assistantship (FLTA) Awards offer opportunities for Irish speakers to teach the Irish language and take courses at several US Institutions. The Fulbright TechImpact Awards support flexible short-term, non-commercial projects and research, exploring how technology contributes to a larger social value.

Download the Geoscience GSI Award Download the Marine MI Award


The US Ambassador to Ireland Mr Kevin O’Malley said: “This year marks the 70th Anniversary of the global Fulbright Program. Through educational and cultural exchange, this program brings a little more knowledge and a little more compassion into world affairs. I strongly encourage students, researchers and professionals to apply and become part of an esteemed network that advances international understanding and strengthens the U.S.-Irish relationship.”


The Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Mr Charlie Flanagan T.D. said: “The Fulbright Awards continue to play a central role in promoting and deepening educational links between Ireland and the US. These awards allow students and researchers to develop their talents and expertise in a range of exciting areas, and further enrich the relationship between Ireland and the US. The Irish Government is proud to support the Fulbright Awards, especially in this the programme’s 70th anniversary year.”


Fulbright Commission Executive Director Dr Dara FitzGerald said: “Fulbright Awards have had, and will continue to have, a significant impact on Awardees careers, they serve to open US opportunities and indeed advance Irish research. These Awards not only provide funding, they also offer a priceless support structure and introduce candidates to a vast international network. The Irish-U.S. relationship is one we should embrace and promote, what better way in these turbulent times than through education and knowledge sharing.


The new Fulbright-HRB HealthImpact Award is a one-of-a-kind award, and offers unique opportunities for Irish Health professionals to conduct original research and share knowledge and ideas whilst in the USA, and to bring this enhanced expertise back to Ireland. We are delighted to partner with the Health Research Board on this new Award.”


For further details and eligibility criteria please visit www.fulbright.ie. The application deadline is 4pm, 28th October 2016.


ENDS

For further information, interviews, etc. please contact:
Emma Loughney, Communications Manager, Fulbright Commission
Emma.loughney@fulbright.ie 087-6654535 / 01-6607670

Website: www.fulbright.ie
Twitter: @Fulbright_Eire

*Note to Editor:
The Fulbright Program was set up by Senator J. William Fulbright in 1946 and is the largest and most prestigious U.S. international exchange program in the world. It offers opportunities for educational exchange in 155 countries worldwide. The Fulbright Commission in Ireland annually awards grants for Irish citizens to study, research, or teach in the U.S. and for Americans to do the same in Ireland. Since its formation over 2,000 postgraduate students, scholars, professionals, and teachers have participated in the program between the U.S. and Ireland.

Published: 01/09/2016
Page Type: Web page

Government announce €1m boost for Geology research.

Industry and third level to benefit from targeted funding for geoscience research projects, from UAV mapping to landslide modelling and clean drinking water.

Dublin, 21 March 2016


It was announced today that the Government will provide €1m funding for 41 small scale geoscience research projects in 2016.


The projects have been funded by the Geological Survey of Ireland in the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources as part of the 2015/2016 GSI Geoscience Research Short Call, and will be of less than one year in duration.


“We are funding a very wide range of applied projects, from using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for coastal mapping to landslide monitoring and 3D modelling of shipwrecks. We also have projects on groundwater drinking supplies, recycling of mine waste, geotourism, geothermal energy and seismicity in Ireland.The outputs of these projects will go a long way to help the country understand and manage its often hidden natural resources. The short turnaround of these projects will also mean the impacts for society will occur quickly. The standard and quality of the applications received have proven that Irish geoscience researchers, both in industry and third level can compete at the highest level and can directly support geoscience industries in Ireland” said Mr Koen Verbruggen, Director of the Geological Survey of Ireland.


The research programme will complement substantial recent Government investments in this area such as the Irish Centre for Research in Applied Geoscience (iCRAG), co-funded by SFI and industry partners.


On release of the details of the successful awardees, GSI Research Manager Dr Aoife Braiden said “By making the funding available to both SME and academic partners, we have seen an increase in participation from industry in research activities and a welcomed increase in collaborations between the public and private sector in terms of geoscience research. We hope that funding such as this will help to grow and strengthen the valuable geoscience sector in Ireland and answer real problems for both industry and the relevant authorities”.


37% of applications were from SMEs, 54% from Universities and 9% from other organisations. 29% of applications related to the Tellus programme (www.tellus.ie ), 29% to the INFOMAR programme (www.infomar.ie ) and 32% to other geoscience topics including energy, minerals and raw materials, groundwater, geotourism, public perception and geological mapping.


Details of the projects receiving funding can also be found on the Geological Survey of Ireland’s website at www.gs.i.e/research.

Details of the INFOMAR related projects can be found at on the INFOMAR website.

ENDS

Note to Editors

www.gsi.ie

For further information contact

Dr Aoife Braiden, Research Manager, GSI aoife.braiden@gsi.ie  (01) 6782650

For further information about iCRAG, see www.icrag-centre.org

Published: 21/03/2016
Page Type: Web page

GEOSCIENCE 2015 Conference, Underpinning Ireland Tourism, Maps & Apps by Geological Survey of Ireland

Dublin, 4th November 2015

Following on from the Budget 2016 announcement of €9m funding for Geoscience, the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) today set out an ambitious programme and gave updates on a successful 2015, including:


• Grants to support Geotourism and Geoparks
• New groundwater mobile phone App to support clean drinking water
• New offshore mapping from the INFOMAR programme, ending its phase 1.
• National Tellus airborne geophysics survey now 30% complete
• New Research initiatives

Opening the conference, Minister Joe McHugh TD, commented,
“Geoscience in Ireland continues to grow in importance for the entire country and I am happy to be able to support the impactful work of the GSI. In tackling issues as diverse and important as water quality, marine safety, attracting exploration, job creation and R&D, we are underpinning the recovery of our economy. In particular, today, the grants announced for geotourism and the development of the Geopark programme will be a considerable boost to this growing tourism sector. I am also delighted to support the serious financial commitment my department is making to Geoscience and to see new permanent positions being recruited.”

Geotourism Grants
Funding has been approved to part-fund existing and potential Geoparks geologist in delivering educational and geotourism activities, required to maintain or apply for membership of the Global Geoparks Network (GGN). In addition funding is allocated for specific products such as popular geology books, trail guides, information material and website development. Geoparks are a UNESCO initiative for sustainable tourism based on geology , leading to job creation and benefit in local rural communities. Projects funded in Ireland include the Copper Coast; Burren & Cliffs of Moher Geoparks; the developing areas of Joyce Country in Galway; and the cross border Mourne Cooley Gullion area.

Groundwater Mobile Phone App
The new mobile phone App developed by the GSI shows water wells, karst features (such as sinkholes), where groundwater resources exist underground (aquifers) and how vulnerable they are to potential contamination. This is a vital tool in planning for new developments, water wells, septic tanks and even agriculture in Ireland. The App is based on extensive field mapping by GSI and digital cartography, and was developed in-house.

New marine mapping from INFOMAR
Inshore marine mapping surveys have been completed for Bannow Bay, Wexford Harbour, Youghal, Dungarvan and the Boyne Estuary with both Carlingford Lough and Lough Foyle to be completed by year end. Preliminary images have been compiled, including shipwrecks, such as City of London off Wexford (image below) and newly mapped shoals, but all data will be available to download in 2016.

New Mapping from Tellus
Extraordinary new detail of volcanic features in the midlands was revealed earlier this year and the latest surveying phase in eastern Ireland was completed on-schedule this week , with results available in spring 2016. The completion of the eastern Ireland survey phase sees the Tellus airborne geophysics programme continue to deliver world-class surveying, with progress towards national airborne geophysics coverage now standing at 30%. Geochemical surveying continues in the west of Ireland this autumn, with release of further results, including precious metals, by year end.

Research
GSI recently announced a “Research Short Call” with funding available for both researchers and SMEs to carry out geoscience related projects or development, for periods up to one year and funding up to €25k. Depending on quality of proposals received, up to €1m in funding could be available for the scheme.
In addition, for the first time, GSI are pleased to announce a new collaboration with the prestigious Fulbright Commission of Ireland for 2016-2017, providing funding for work and travel in the US for an Irish based geoscientist.

Geoscience Ireland jobs initiative
Geoscience Ireland (GI) is an integrated network of 25 companies, bringing expertise in water, minerals and infrastructure development to global clients in over 50 countries. Launched in September 2012 as a government measure to help business win work in international markets, GI is supported by the Geological Survey of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland and the network employs almost 1,200 persons, with a collective turnover of €252 million in 2014, of which 64% comes from overseas business. In 2015 GI member companies reported the addition of 134 new jobs in the first six months of the year.

In addition a new book, 648 Billion Sunrises: A miscellany of Irish Geology by Patrick Roycroft, will also be launched at the conference.

Ends
Notes to Editors

The Geological Survey of Ireland is the National Earth Science Agency. It is responsible for providing geological advice and information, and for the acquisition of data for this purpose. GSI produces a range of products including maps, reports and databases and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology. GSI is a division of the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources (DCENR). www.gsi.ie.

Groundwater Mapping & App
GSI play a key role in the mapping and protection of Ireland’s groundwater resources, which provide c.25% of drinking water supplies in Ireland and up to 100% in certain counties. The GSI Groundwater Programme, having completed national scale aquifer, vulnerability and protection scheme mapping in 2013 are now focussed on addressing identified data gaps, supporting implementation of the second cycle of the Water Framework Directive and developing the science to support future groundwater use and protection. Current initiatives include developing a methodology for mapping of karst limestone features (including sink holes), protection plans for specific drinking water supplies , including work with the Federation of Group Water Schemes, and sand and gravel aquifer mapping.

New Groundwater Mobile Phone App Interface:



Figure 1. Basemap options
Figure 2. Groundwater layers
Figure 3. Video Tutorial

To access the App, click the following links:
Desktop viewer: http://spatial.dcenr.gov.ie/GeologicalSurvey/Groundwater/index.html
Mobile web app: http://j.mp/groundwatergsi

TELLUS Project background

The TELLUS project is an initiative to carry out state-of-the-art mapping using airborne remote sensing and ground based sampling, to complete a baseline all island environmental  and geological dataset, facilitating the implementation of certain EU Directives and stimulating investment. The programme was completed in Northern Ireland in 2011 where it has stimulated c.UK£50m in inward investment in mineral exploration alone. In association with the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland, GSI attracted €5m funding from INTERREG IVA to carry out the TELLUS Border project from 2010-2013, covering the six border counties of the Republic and allowing integration with similar data that already exist for Northern Ireland. The programme also developed a new methodology for Radon Mapping in conjunction with RPII, supported research across a range of applied and environmental topics and is estimated to have stimulated more than €1m in commitments to mineral exploration expenditure already.

Government have approved direct Exchequer funding in 2014 and 2015 to continue the project to the rest of the country with the objective of completing the whole country by 2021. Tellus maps and data are available free of charge at www.tellus.ie.

INFOMAR

Ireland, through GSI, is also a world leader in marine mapping and jointly manages INFOMAR, the national marine mapping programme which has completed the mapping of Ireland’s deeper waters and is currently focused on mapping priority areas in support of Ocean Energy, Marine Safety and Fisheries.  INFOMAR is funded by DCENR through a dedicated multi-annual Large Capital Programme, reported on quarterly to the Minister. The programme consists of three components:

1. Data Acquisition, Management and Interpretation

2. Data Exchange & Integration

3. Value Added Exploitation

In 2013, in addition to the surveying and added value operations, a scheduled external review was completed by consultants PwC, leading to a Government Decision in late 2013 to approve the continuance of INFOMAR, at present level of funding, to 2018, with a greater emphasis on the Added Value Programme. The programme continues to assist both of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive Technical Advisory Group and the Marine Co-Ordination Group and is listed as a Key Enabler under the Integrated Marine action Plan (Harnessing our Ocean Wealth). 

Operationally INFOMAR acquire data primarily through multibeam echo sounder mapping from vessels, with GSI operating four inshore vessels dedicated to the programme and Marine Institute leasing ship time from their two larger offshore vessels as appropriate. A key target for the programme is the completion of mapping of 26 bays and 3 offshore areas designated as Priority, by completion of Phase 1 in Q4 2015.In 2015 this will include mapping in Lough Foyle, Carlingford, Drogheda, Bannow, Youghal & Dungarvan Bays and Wexford harbour approaches.
see www.infomar.ie

New mapping  from INFOMAR:

As part of the INFOMAR survey of Bannow Bay in 2015 local divers alerted the INFOMAR survey team to the presence of a wreck very close to the shore about halfway between Kilmore Quay and Carnsore Point. The wreck is believed to be that of the “City of London”. The City of London was built in 1868, a cargo ship and was on route from San Francisco to Liverpool carrying a cargo of bagged wheat and pressed salmon with a crew of 29 onboard. On January 13 th 1875 the ship encountered very heavy seas and ran aground beyond St Patricks Bridge and onto a steep sloping sandy beach c. 5 miles west of Carnsore Point. The 29 crew were safely brought ashore by the coastguard.  The vessel remained lying on the beach with no way of saving it but the cargo was to be recovered.

The survey of the wreck has revealed that it is lying East-West on its side and is approx.. 70m x 11m and is 0.5m in height off the seabed. The area around the wreck appears to have debris from the wreck scattered and the wreck itself is quite broken up. As this shipwreck is over 100 years old it is protected under the National Monuments (Amendment) Acts 1987 and 1994.  

INFOMAR seabed mapping progress in 2015:

Geoscience Ireland

Geoscience Ireland (GI) is a network of 25 companies, delivering integrated expertise in water, minerals, environmental and infrastructure development to clients in over 50 countries.

GI is supported by the Geological Survey of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. The GI network provides design, consultancy and contracting services to multilateral agencies, governments and the private sector.

The companies and organisations involved in Geoscience Ireland have overlapping expertise so they can come together to win significant international projects. Working abroad is nothing new to the companies involved, given that they have a network of international offices in UK, Africa, North America and elsewhere.  The staff in the consortium companies have worked extensively internationally in private sector mineral exploration, public infrastructural developments, and with multilateral development agencies on institutional strengthening and capacity building.

GSI Research

The GSI are pleased to announce a new collaboration with the Fulbright Commission of Ireland for 2016-2017. The Fulbright Commission is a global organisation that awards highly competitive, merit-based grants to international postgraduate students, scholars, and professionals to study, research, and lecture in the United States and for Americans to undertake similar activities outside the US. The funding does not cover salaries of the researchers but does cover travel and related costs.

The Geological Survey of Ireland will be funding an Irish based researcher to spend time with a US research group as part of the 2016/2017 award programme – researchers can be at any stage of their career but must be working in an area of geoscience. This includes but is not limited to: geological and marine mapping, geological processes, Earth observation, groundwater, raw materials and minerals and public perception of Earth resources.

For further information please see the GSI website:

https://www.gsi.ie/News/GSI+develops+new+collaboration+with+the+Fulbright+Commission.htm

The Fulbright website:

http:// www.fulbright.ie

Picture desks: High resolution images available upon request

Published: 05/11/2015
Page Type: Web page

Mountains in the Atlantic Ocean mapped by multinational team on Celtic Explorer

Galway, 9th June 2015

A multi-national team of European, Canadian, and American ocean exploration experts lead by Thomas Furey, Marine Institute, has revealed previously uncharted features on the Atlantic seabed including mountains and ridges taller than Carrauntoohil, Ireland's highest mountain.

The survey onboard Ireland's national research vessel, the RV Celtic Explorer, is one of the first projects to be launched by the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance formed following the signing of the Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation between Canada, the EU and the US in May 2013. Its goals are to join resources of its three signatories to better understand the North Atlantic Ocean and to promote the sustainable management of its resources.

The team from Marine Institute and Geological Survey of Ireland (INFOMAR -national seabed mapping programme), the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada, the United States' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Portuguese Institute for Sea and Atmosphere (IPMA), used the latest multi-beam echo sounder technology on the Celtic Explorer to create high resolution images of dramatic seabed features.

They uncovered 235km2 of iceberg scarred seabed, ancient glacial moraine features, and buried sediment channels on the Newfoundland and Labrador shelf. They charted a 15km long down-slope channel feature on the western Atlantic continental slope, most likely formed by meltwater run-off associated with ice cap grounding during the last glaciation, approximately 20,000 years ago. They crossed the dramatic Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge creating a 3D visualisation of a 3.7km high underwater mountain. Continuing eastward a straight asymmetric ridge feature came to life standing proud from the flat seabed over 140km long, peaking at 1108m high, taller than Carrauntoohil.

The ambitious survey route included an area off Newfoundland and Labrador where cold water corals and sponges are known to occur and crossed the OSPAR designated Marine Protected Area in the dramatic topography of the central Atlantic. It also targeted the drop location for the first trans-Atlantic telecommunications cable laid in 1857 between Ireland and Newfoundland, and set out to groundtruth seafloor features identified through satellite altimetry research in the last two years.

"This survey marks the beginning of an exciting Atlantic research mapping collaboration between the US, Canada and Europe. It shows what can be achieved when we pool our resources, sharing knowledge, infrastructure and technology. And we hope to build on this next year, when Ireland's R.V. Celtic Explorer will be joined by research vessels from Norway and the USA, and in subsequent years", said Dr. Peter Heffernan, Marine Institute, Ireland.

"Seeing dramatic seabed features reveal themselves for the first time was a real highlight of the survey" said Tommy Furey, Chief Scientist, Marine Institute, Ireland. "We need to better understand the features that make up the ocean seabed. With global population and seafood demand spiralling, we need to map our seabed to define favourable habitats for fishing, key sites for conservation, and safe navigation for shipping. Map it, manage it, and mind it."

The survey was part funded by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador which has invested approximately $5 million in RV Celtic Explorer expeditions since 2010 to support fisheries science activities. The vessel had just completed the annual fisheries survey in Newfoundland and Labrador, which provided the opportunity to embark on the trans-Atlantic mapping survey on the return journey to Ireland.


Results from the Atlantic Transect will be presented at the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth conference July 10-11th, 2015 in Cork, and at the Seabed Mapping Working Group meeting preceding the event on July 9th.

Ends
Notes to Editors

Related news releases:

Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance Launch, 24 May 2013: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-13-459_en.htm

Announcement of first trans-Atlantic Mapping Survey, Brussels 16 April,2015: http://ec.europa.eu/ireland/press_office/news_of_the_day/new-wave-scientific-transatlantic-cooperation_en.htm

Transatlantic Seabed Mapping Survey launch, St. Johns Newfoundland, Monday 1st June 2015:
http://www.marine.ie/Home/site-area/news-events/press-releases/atlantic-ocean-research-alliance-launches-first-trans-atlantic

Background to the survey
The survey is one of the first projects to be launched by the Alliance, formed in May 2013 following the signing of the Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation between Canada, the EU and the US. The three signatories agreed a common goal to jointly undertake the challenge to better understand the North Atlantic Ocean, and to promote the sustainable management of its resources.

In February this year, at the first meeting of the newly formed Atlantic Seabed Mapping Working Group, a key component of the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance, plans for a 2016 Pilot Atlantic Seabed Survey were first discussed. Demonstrating intent over aspiration, and facilitated by a longstanding relationship between the Marine Institute and Geological Survey of Ireland and the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada, the R.V. Celtic Explorer was made available by Ireland to undertake seabed mapping during its return passage from a Memorial University fisheries research charter in Newfoundland.

While the broad intent was to pave the path to the 2016 seabed survey initiative and future Atlantic projects for better ocean management, the specific aims of the Atlantic Transect survey were to:

• Undertake a collaborative EU, US, & Canadian multibeam echo sounder (MBES) survey.
• Produce seabed terrain data and visualization products, both for science, and the public.
• Identify key recommendations and features for investigation during the forthcoming seabed mapping pilot survey(s).
• Encourage seabed mapping related EU, US, Canadian research, data and operational collaboration.
• Create momentum and interest in mapping a largely unsurveyed Atlantic Ocean.

To undertake the Atlantic Transect coast to coast seabed mapping, a multibeam survey team joined the vessel in St. John's, Newfoundland, representing each of the signatories to the Galway Statement – the Fisheries and Marine Institute for Canada, NOAA for the US, and IPMA (Portugal) and Marine Institute (Ireland) representing the EU. The Irish lead survey is supported by INFOMAR staff, who work on the Geological Survey of Ireland and Marine Institute jointly managed seabed mapping programme (Integrated mapping For the sustainable development of Ireland's Marine Resource), funded by Ireland's Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

The team gathered information on the physical characteristics of the seafloor, such as depth, hardness, and sediment cover, while also acquiring valuable oceanographic data including temperature, salinity, and fluorescence. The Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone surveyed in part by the R.V. Celtic Explorer team, is central to the mixing of cold nutrient rich southern bound waters, and warmer nutrient poor northern bound waters, and is home to complex ecosystems and a diverse array of marine life.

The fracture zone comprises two parallel valleys and ridges, extending from the tops of seamounts at 700-800 m depth, and plunging down to depths of 4500 m along the valley's seafloor. These unique deepwater passages provide the only submarine highway for deep sea marine life between the North-East and North-West Atlantic. They also coincide with an unfortunate drop location selection for the 1857 telecommunications cable deployment, it is little wonder it took several attempts and repairs before the first successful message was transmitted in 1858, and the first truly operational cable was in place in 1866, the 150th anniversary of which will take place next year.

Statements from previous related announcements:
"The North Atlantic Ocean is crucial to the ecological, economic, and societal health and resilience of North America, Europe and the Arctic regions and the data we collect will be vital to understanding how we move forward together to ensure its sustainability," said Glenn Blackwood, vice-president, Memorial University (Marine Institute). "We are pleased to lend our ocean mapping expertise in this field and contribute in such a meaningful way for our shared benefit."

"We are happy to see Canadian federal, provincial and academic participation in the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance," said the Honourable Gail Shea, Canada's Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. "The contribution of so many Canadian scientific experts in this important international initiative demonstrates Canada's commitment to the Atlantic Ocean and the Galway Agreement."

"We are proud to be part of the first trilateral expedition under the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance," said Kathryn Sullivan, U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA administrator. "By collaborating fully within this agreement, we will contribute essential scientific knowledge and ensure our shared Atlantic Ocean remains healthy and productive."

Speaking at the announcement of the survey in Brussels in April 2015, Simon Coveney, Irish Minister for Agriculture Food and the Marine, said, "Information from the sea-floor is vital to the sustainable management of the Atlantic as well as to important industries such as fisheries, aquaculture and tourism. Ireland has developed a world-leading reputation for sea-bed mapping and is also very committed to the implementation of the Galway Statement and so I am delighted Ireland's state-of the art research vessel-RV Celtic Explorer is the platform for the survey."

"The collaborative mapping of the Atlantic Ocean by Canada, the US and Europe is an important initiative which, as a provincial government, we are proud to support," said the Honourable Darin King, Minister of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development. "This tangible initiative builds on the work my department has been undertaking to facilitate partnerships and economic opportunities between Newfoundland and Labrador and Ireland and on a broader scale between Canada, the US and Europe."

Additional Resources:

Seabed Mapping & Multibeam

http://www.infomar.ie
http://maps.marine.ie/infomar

http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/sonar.html

Satellite Altimetry

http://topex.ucsd.edu/grav_outreach/

http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Observing_the_Earth/CryoSat/CryoSat_unveils_secrets_of_the_deep

http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/atlantis-no-it-atlant-isnt.html

http://www.tos.org/oceanography/archive/17-1.html

Audio Visual Ocean Exploration Links

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-ETgU6D5po&feature=share&list=LLJLZditaChmwLUKSCDbkADg

http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/hsd/multibeam.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fAAxEIFeLU

http://www.charlie-gibbs.org/charlie/node/18

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fAAxEIFeLU

Published: 09/06/2015
Page Type: Web page

New sonar imagery of wreck of the RMS LUSITANIA one hundred years after its loss

Dublin, 6th May 2015

Minister of State with responsibility for Natural Resources at the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, Joe McHugh T.D., and Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys T.D, today welcomed the publication of new state-of-the-art sonar imagery of the RMS Lusitania. Members of the INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland's Marine Resource) team from the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the National Monuments Service of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht have recently produced and assessed this brand new sonar imagery of the wreck of the RMS Lusitania.

The current condition of the RMS Lusitania on the seafloor, 100-years after its sinking on May 7th 1915, is revealed in greater detail than ever before. The imagery provides a sense of the scale and history of the site, a tangible connection to the wreck and to the dramatic and tragic events that surrounded its sinking. The 240m long vessel is clearly defined on the sea floor, lying on its starboard side and standing over 14m high above the seabed.

Minister McHugh said that “The new imagery of the Lusitania provides the most detailed information and overview of the wreck site compiled to date and provides a solid framework upon which new research and analysis can be based”.

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Ms Humphreys, added “It is fitting that these images are being in the centenary year of the sinking of the Lusitania. The imagery will provide important information on how the shipwreck has changed over the last 100 years.”

This new survey data is extremely important from a site protection point of view. It will add to our knowledge and understanding of the wreck site on the seabed, its current condition and how the site has changed or degraded over the years. Additionally, the data, in tandem with previous information from individual divers to the site, will be very beneficial in developing our understanding of the physical processes at play at the wreck site and in the surrounding seabed and should help inform long term management strategies for protecting, investigating and conserving the wreck .

One hundred years on, the Lusitania is beginning to reveal its wounds, scars and perhaps its secrets, and may continue to do so for many years to come.

ENDS

A 3D image of the wreck of the Lusitania with the bow of the vessel towards the NE.The wreck lies on a flat seafloor in a general depth of 93m.

A plan view of the wreck of the Lusitania at 25cm resolution. The wreck is orientated NE-SW with its bow to the NE. The wreck lies on its starboard side and measures 240m in length. (Image produced by INFOMAR/Geological Survey of Ireland/Marine Institute)

You can download the RMS Lusitania Shipwreck Information sheet by clicking here.

Other shipwreck information sheets can be downloaded from here.

Published: 06/05/2015
Page Type: Web page

Ireland gets new High Tech survey vessel

Dublin, 26th March 2015

Minister of State with responsibility for Natural Resources at the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, Joe McHugh T.D., today formally commissioned the INFOMAR Programme’s new survey vessel, naming her the RV TONN at the Poolbeg Yacht, Boat Club & Marina.

As part of Ireland’s national marine mapping initiative, the INFOMAR programme carries out hydrographic & geophysical surveys of Irish territorial waters. It is a cooperative programme between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute and is funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

Minister McHugh said “The INFOMAR programme is unique among the various projects funded by my Department, DCENR, in that, for 6 - 8 months of the year, the Infomar team of marine survey specialists live and work among the Irish coastal communities around the entire coast of Ireland.” The Minister went on to say one of the achievements of the INFOMAR programme is the focus on disseminating new information on the Irish offshore, which is available free on the http://www.infomar.ie/data/ website. The Minster added ”A really good example of the applied use of INFOMAR data is the smartphone App produced jointly by the Irish Underwater Council and INFOMAR, which affords a user access to The Wild Atlantic Way/Dive & Snorkelling sample locations” (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.infomar.infomardiving).

The RV Tonn, is named appropriately after the Irish for wave, as it both operates on the waves and uses sound waves to investigate the depth and nature of the seabed. It is a new state of the art vessel, only 8 metres in length, but purpose built to carry out very shallow survey work. It was built by Cheetah Marine in the Isle of Wight after an open tender process.

This new vessel, RV Tonn, will support the completion of the first phase of the Infomar Project's mapping of three priority Areas and 26 priority bays, by the end of 2015.

Welcoming the launch, Koen Verbruggen, Director of the Geological Survey of Ireland, said “Up-to-date advanced mapping, facilitates greater awareness of Irish marine opportunities.”

L-R: Archie Donovan (Joint INFOMAR Project Manager GSI), Koen Verbruggen (Director GSI), Joe McHugh TD, Tommy Furey (Joint INFOMAR Project Manager MI)

Notes to Editor
Mapping by INFOMAR

The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). Covering some 125,000 square kilometres of underwater territory, the INFOMAR programme is producing integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

The surveys are carried out using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, GSI inshore launches RV Keary, Cosantoir Bradan and RV Geo and Airborne LIDAR. These are now to be joined by the RV Tonn. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping and marine resource management, as well as analyse the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology.

ENDS

Published: 26/03/2015
Page Type: Web page

Diving App Released – Seafloor, wave, tide, shipwreck, and site info combined

December 28, 2014
By Gearoid O'Riain, Compass Informatics

Compass Informatics with the INFOMAR seabed survey programme and Comhairle Fé Thuinn announces the release of a new app for diving and snorkelling. Available at no cost, currently for Android phone.

A new diving app – the INFOMAR CFT Dive Guide – has been released by Compass Informatics, a Dublin-based information and location technologies company. The app brings together a range of information to help divers and snorkelers alike to plan their activities, and through its focus on Blueway sites, it promotes the tourism value of these activities. INFOMAR and other marine data are central to the app and so seabed, current, tidal, wave and other data are combined with dive and snorkel site locations. Shipwreck data is included too, including the many U Boat sinkings around our northwest coast. The development has been funded from the INFOMAR programme which supports research around sharing of its seabed data to various user groups such as divers and snorkelers, and has benefitted too from guidance from the diving community and Comhairle Fe Thuinn. This is the first release of the app and it will be enhanced over the coming years with more information and also a version for Apple and other phones – it is currently available for Android phones, and feedback on the app features is asked for.

For further information contact Gearóid Ó Riain, Managing Director (goriain@compass.ie, tel +353 1 2104580, mobile +353 87 2902343).

Link to download – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.infomar.infomardiving

About Compass Informatics: Compass Informatics is an information and location technologies company that creates management systems in a range of areas including environment, transportation, planning, heritage and tourism, agriculture, biodiversity, nutrient management, land & asset management. The company creates these systems for leading clients across Ireland, the UK, and South Africa and is an example of an Irish company applying innovation to generate jobs and exports. Focussing the location aspect of information, Compass creates map viewers, mobile apps, and management dashboards that help present and share data in ways that make the information easy to understand and suitable for decision making. Compass Informatics operates the National Biodiversity Data Centre under a long term service agreement with the Heritage Council and the Department of Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht.

Web and Social Media links: www.compass.ie; https://twitter.com/CompassInfo; https://www.facebook.com/CompassInformatics; https://www.linkedin.com/company/compass-informatics_2.

About the Irish Underwater Council / Comhairle Fé Thuinn (CFT): The Irish Underwater Council (CFT) is the national governing body for recreational underwater sports in Ireland. It was founded in 1963 to organise and promote sport scuba diving and snorkelling and has grown since then to incorporate over 80 clubs around the country. CFT is ISO accredited, highlighting our professionalism, instruction skills and individual development. For those interested in learning to Scuba Dive or Snorkel our doors are always open to the complete beginner as well as the more experienced Diver. CFT objectives are to allow you to develop the skills required to excel at this amazing activity within a friendly, safe, professional and continually developing environment.

About the INFOMAR Progamme: The INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MArine Resource (INFOMAR) programme is a joint venture of the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), Dept. of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR) and the Marine Institute (Dept. of Agriculture, Food and Marine). This project is currently funding for the period (2014 – 2018) from within the DCENR Department’s agreed multi-annual capital envelope. The programme is a successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS) and concentrates on creating a range of integrated mapping products of the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed in the near-shore area.

About the National Biodiversity Data Centre: The National Biodiversity Data Centre is a national organisation for the collection, collation, management, analysis and dissemination of data on Ireland’s biological diversity. Biodiversity data are a key requirement for understanding our natural surroundings, for tracking change in our environment and for gaining a greater insight on how we benefit from, and impact upon, the ecosystem goods and services provided by biological diversity; a national asset which contributes at least €2.8 billion to the Irish economy each year. The Data Centre was established by the Heritage Council in 2007 and is funded by the Heritage Council and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

Published: 28/12/2014
Page Type: Web page

Minister launches new range of Educational Geology products in Irish

The Minister of State for Gaeltacht Affairs and Natural Resources, Joe McHugh T.D. launched the publication “an Geolaíocht ó bhun go barr” at Coláiste Ailigh in Letterkenny on the 24th November.

The book, is an accessible study guide to the basic geological and geographical processes relevant to Ireland, particularly useful for post-primary schools, and will be of great use to secondary school pupils both in the Gaeltacht and outside it. It will also be of immense value to adults who will be both able to learn about the natural history of Ireland and improve their Irish at the same time. All technical terms are covered in a glossary.

The book is published by Sherkin Island Marine Station in collaboration with the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), An Comhairle Um Oideachas Gaeltachta & Gaelscoileanna and the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

Updated Irish language versions of the “Real Map of Ireland” and “Bedrock Geological map of Ireland” were also included in the launch, both useful tools in the study of Irish geography and geology.

The Minister stated: “An Gheolaíocht ó bhun go barr”, along with the “Bedrock geological map” and the ”Real Map of Ireland” will be of great assistance in gaelscoileanna and Gaeltacht communities throughout Ireland in ensuring that Irish language educational material is up to date with advances in our understanding of the geography of Ireland”.

The two Irish language maps, which are available separately, reflect the important work being carried out by the GSI. The “Real Map of Ireland” is a detailed map of the seabed around Ireland, derived from the national seabed mapping programme of GSI and the Marine Institute, under the INFOMAR programme. The “Bedrock Geological Map of Ireland” is the latest update of the various geological maps of our island and for the first time combines geology both onshore and offshore.

The Minister went on to say “Not only will these materials be of great assistance to pupils in gaelscoileanna, they are also a useful aid for teachers in primary and secondary schools, a learning tool for adult Irish learners, as well as being of interest to the Irish speaking public in general. By making these materials available in Irish, the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is showing its commitment to the Irish language and fulfilling its obligations under our own Language scheme, which was launched in March of this year”.

The launch of this book is part of the commitments made under the Department’s Irish Language Scheme. The Department has taken it upon itself to translate and publish a wide range of literature from the GSI, of which “An Geolaíocht ó bhun go barr” is the first full book, while the GSI Information booklet, GSI field code, and the GSI “Careers in Geology” document are also available in Irish.

The Department hopes to launch a series of publications each year, in celebration of Seachtain na Gaeilge throughout the lifetime of this translation scheme. The availability of these materials in Irish will add to the wealth of educational material available in our national language, helping Irish speakers and those less fluent alike.

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS

SHERKIN ISLAND MARINE STATION

Sherkin Island Marine Station was founded in 1975 by Matt Murphy and his late wife, Eileen and is run by Matt and his family. Sherkin Island is situated one-and-a-quarter miles off the south-west coast of Ireland, off-shore from the fishing village of Baltimore. The Marine Station is located on the north-west end of the island on 16 acres. The Station is now a large complex of 5 laboratories and a library of some 100,000 books, journals, reports, reprints, together with an herbarium of plants and seaweeds. In addition to managing one of Ireland’s longest running baseline environmental surveys, the Station raises awareness of the environment through talks and collaborative publications, such as the A to Z of Geology.

GSI
The Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), founded in 1845, is the National Earth Science Agency and a division of the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources. The GSI is responsible for creating a broad range of products, including maps, reports and databases, and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology.

INFOMAR Project
The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is Ireland’s national marine mapping programme. It is funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and carried out as a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). See www.infomar.ie

REAL MAP OF IRELAND
The Real map of Ireland was produced by the Marine Institute & GSI as part of the INFOMAR programme, to highlight the extent of Ireland’s claimed marine territory, which is ten times the area of our landmass. The map reflects the land beneath the sea which ranges in depth from 200m on our near shelf to 5km in the deep ocean.

An Comhairle Um Oideachas Gaeltachta & Gaelscoileanna

An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta was founded under the provisions of Article 31 of the Education Act of 1998 to establish a structure to cater for the educational needs of Gaeltacht schools and of Gaelscoileanna. There are functions also in Article 31 relating to the teaching of Irish in the country’s other schools. The Comhairle’s role relates to both primary and post-primary education and the three main areas of work are: the provision of teaching resources; the provision of support services; research.

Bunaíodh an Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta faoi fhorálacha Alt 31 den Acht oideachais 1998 chun go mbeadh sainstruchtúr ann le freastal a dhéanamh ar riachtanais oideachais na scoileanna Gaeltachta agus na scoileanna lán-Ghaeilge. Tá feidhmeanna maidir le múineadh na Gaeilge i scoileanna eile na tíre ag an gComhairle chomh maith. Baineann ról na Comhairle leis an mbunoideachas agus leis an iar-bhunoideachas agus tá trí mhór-réimse oibre ann: Soláthar acmhainní teagaisc; Seirbhísí taca; Taighde.

Published: 27/11/2014
Page Type: Web page

Minister McHugh Launches Publication on Irish Quarries and novel schools app at Geoscience 2014 event

Dublin, 5th October 2014

•             Quarry Directory to support construction recovery

•             Transition year schools map app launched

Minister for Natural Resources, Joe McHugh, T.D., today (Wednesday 5th November, 2014), launched new digital products at the opening of Geoscience 2014, the annual conference of the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), in Dublin Castle.

Quarry Directory
The new Directory of Active Quarries and Pits in Ireland is considered a critical publication to assist the recovery of Ireland’s construction sector. The quarrying and concrete industry is estimated to employ over 5,000 people in Ireland and produce aggregate worth approximately €170 million and added value products (such as concrete) with a value of approximately €160 million annually. This is an industry vital to construction and infrastructure development with operations located close to their market, often providing scarce rural jobs.

The new directory was compiled by GSI with assistance from members of both the Irish Mining and Quarrying Society and the Irish Concrete Federation and provides a comprehensive listing of Irelands quarry operators, including location maps, contact and product details. The Directory follows on from completion by GSI last year of Aggregate Potential Maps, showing areas geologically suitable for quarry development.

EODP App
The conference will also feature new outreach products including an app, EODP (Education and Outreach Development Project) developed for transition year students, to allow them to make their own online maps and carry out environmental projects on the coastline. The app was developed as part of the national marine mapping programme, INFOMAR, managed by the GSI and Marine Institute and was produced with ESRI (Irl) Ltd. It has already garnered an award from IRLOGI, the Irish Organisation for Geographic Information and is available to download for android phones from www.gsi.ie

Minister McHugh commented that “as our economy and construction industry recovers, it is vital the industry has the information they need on the quarrying sector. Jobs in this sector are often crucial to the rural economy and the industry itself provides exports of over €60 million p.a.”. Referring to the schools app he pointed out that “if we are to engage our youth in the vital STEM areas, we must present information in an engaging way. The new app which blends scientific data, map making and coding in a mobile ready way is an example of just such delivery”.

Conference
The annual Geoscience conference showcases highlights of GSI and their partners activities, including outcomes from the Griffiths Geoscience Research Programme, which has been bolstered by the recent announcement of the €24m Irish Centre for Applied Geoscience Research funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and industry. New developments will also be featured in areas such as Groundwater, Landslides, 3D mapping and Earth Observation. The programme will also include an update on GSI’s Tellus Programme, currently surveying the North Midlands Area using airborne and ground methods.

ENDS

Notes to Editors


Quarry Directory
A new edition of the GSI Quarry Directory, has been produced with assistance from members of two key organisations, Irish Mining & Quarrying Society and the Irish Concrete Federation. The last edition was produced in 2001 before the major expansion and subsequent contraction of the industry. The directory is produced as both a paper product and an online web mapping service that highlights location, products and contact details for over 200 quarries in Ireland.

EODP App
Education Outreach and Development Programme (EODP) - a transition year (TY) student educational project
Winner of IRLOGI Space & Place Awards 2014 - Best use of Location Based Application for Mobile or Tablet
http://www.infomar.ie/EODP/EODP.php


As part of data dissemination the INFOMAR project team recently initiated an Education Outreach Development Programme (EODP). INFOMAR staff are working with consultants from mapping software company ESRI and Dublin Business Innovation Centre to develop products for schools.

The first such app is aimed at Transition Year students, and delivered via the web, allowing the students to make their own digital map of their coast, and then carry out a survey of the coast and record both seaweed types and presence of litter. This data is then both recorded on their map and stored remotely, on the cloud, as a form of “crowd sourcing” and “citizen science”. Presence of seaweed species type is an indication of the health of the environment and litter presence is actually reportable under the new EC Marine strategy framework Directive. The app is intended to make the students aware of their environment, utilise some basic programming (building on Coder Dojo popularity) and make them aware of the INFOMAR Programme.

The Irish Organisation for Geographic Information (IRLOGI) is the umbrella organisation for the geographical information industry in Ireland . They host an annual technical meeting, GIS Ireland. They present Space & Place awards under a number of categories and gave the INFOMAR app an award under Best use of Location Based Application for Mobile or Tablet
http://www.irlogi.ie/

GSI
The Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), founded in 1845, is the National Earth Science Agency and a division of the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources. The GSI is responsible for creating a broad range of products, including maps, reports and databases, and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology.

INFOMAR Project
The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). See www.infomar.ie

Published: 05/11/2014
Page Type: Web page

INFOMAR Programme’s 2014 Annual Seminar launch in Waterford

Waterford, 22 October 2014

Photo shows the opening presentation at the launch of the Seminar in the Tower Hotel, Waterford City. Picture shows left to right Mark Mc Carville (Dublin Business Innovation Centre), Archie Donovan ( joint project manager (GSI) Infomar), Michael Manley Assist Sec (DCENR), Thomas Furey ( joint project manager (MI) Infomar)

The INFOMAR team from the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute (MI) opened their Annual Seminar for 2014 in the Tower Hotel, Waterford. The Seminar will showcase seabed mapping activity and developments during 2014 as part of Ireland’s national marine mapping initiative, INFOMAR, increasing awareness of Ireland’s marine landscape.

The INFOMAR programme carries out hydrographic & geophysical surveys of Irish territorial waters. It is a cooperative programme between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute and is funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

This ambitious mapping initiative began in 2006, and in its first 10 years will successfully map 26 priority bays and 3 priority offshore areas. Using INFOMAR resources, skilled experts based at the GSI and MI develop data products, primarily hydrographic and geological maps that detail the Irish marine territory. These maps are now available for scrutiny amongst all of the other ancillary data on http://www.infomar.ie/data.

Minister of State Joe McHugh T.D. said “The Government has been strongly supportive of this project, committing €15 Million for the 5 year period from 2014 – 2018. With this continued funding support, Ireland is at the leading edge of European work in marine mapping and in laying the foundations for the sustainable management of our ocean space. The Minster pointed out that “This year a further €3 million is being invested under the INFOMAR project in Surveying the gateways to our ports, mapping our fish spawning grounds, finding routes for marine telecommunications cables and selecting the best sites for ocean energy generation. All rely on accurate seabed mapping capability, which Ireland now possesses.”

The 2014 INFOMAR Annual Seminar will provide an update on progress and plans, and focus on the downstream value and application of the data to underpin development and growth across the marine sector. New INFOMAR products and services are continuously evolving, and the event will see the launch of a new education programme, a prototype dive tourism mobile app, and INFOMAR Story Maps.

Welcoming the launch, Koen Verbruggen, Director of the Geological Survey of Ireland, pointed out that the long term benefits to Ireland, as a result of INFOMAR’s offshore mapping are significant, and include:

· Datasets that feed directly into updated nautical charts via the United Kingdom Hydroghaphic Office.

· Up-to-date advanced mapping facilitates greater awareness of Irish marine opportunities.

· The data are used in planning of protection and development offshore Ireland.

· This project is also highlighting data and knowledge gaps for further exploration and research.

· New international research links have been forged between the surveys and agencies, which is resulting in related projects and employment.

Dr Peter Heffernan, Chief Executive of the Marine Institute said ” The Government has prioritised the marine as an area for further growth under the Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth Strategy and the information on Ireland’s vast seabed territory that INFOMAR is capturing and making available will provide a solid platform for sustainable development and growth.

The Director added that “An expected audience of over 130 attendees, over the day and a half seminar, will be treated to host of interesting and relevant presentations along with demonstrations of the project work processes and outputs.”

ENDS

Notes to Editor

Mapping by INFOMAR

The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). Covering some 125,000 square kilometres of underwater territory, INFOMAR project is producing integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

The surveys are carried using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, GSI inshore launches RV Keary, Cosantoir Bradan and RV Geo and Airborne LIDAR. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping, as well as analyse the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology.

Published: 22/10/2014
Page Type: Web page

 

Geological Survey of Ireland’s ‘Real Map’ of Inishbofin launched

Inishbofin 10 October 2014

Download the image by clicking here

Marine scientists from the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) have created a new offshore map of the island of Inishbofin, County Galway, which will be launched today (11th October 2014) at the community centre on the island. The map was developed from work carried out as part of Ireland’s national marine mapping programme, INFOMAR, and will result in increased awareness of the island’s surrounding marine landscape.

Dubbed the ‘Real Map’ of Inishbofin, GSI’s involvement stems from hydrographic survey work carried out in that area for the INFOMAR project, which is a cooperative project between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute (MI), funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

This hugely ambitious project began in 2006, and in its first 10 years will successfully map 26 priority bays and 3 priority offshore areas. Using INFOMAR resources, skilled experts based at the GSI and MI develop data products, primarily hydrographic and geological maps that detail the Irish marine territory. These maps are now available, together with additional data, at http://www.infomar.ie/data..

In addition to the Bofin area that was surveyed as part of the INFOMAR 2012 plan, the team also provided support in various formats to other projects. These include work off the Copper Coast GeoPark as part of the Atlanterra project and completion of Blacksod Bay Assistance to Deep water aquaculture projects at Inisbofin and Inisturk. Following on from the successful collaboration in 2011 with the National Monuments Service in Donegal, the RV Keary once again provided vessel support for the Underwater Archaeology Unit for shipwreck diving and surveying in the Burtonport area off Donegal.

Welcoming the launch, Minister for Natural Resources, Joe McHugh T.D. said, “ In addition to the many economic and research benefits of the INFOMAR programme, such initiatives like the ‘Real Map’ allow people in communities like Inishbofin to gain greater insight and have a better understanding of the landscape around them, making real and tangible what lies beneath the waves.”

The Minister pointed out that the long term benefits to Ireland, as a result of INFOMAR’s offshore mapping are significant, and include:

· Datasets that feed directly into updated nautical charts via the United Kingdom Hydroghaphic Office.

· Up-to-date advanced mapping, facilitating greater awareness of Irish marine opportunities.

· Planning of the protection and development of offshore Ireland.

· Highlighting data and knowledge gaps for further exploration and research.

· New international research links have been forged between the surveys and agencies, which is resulting in related projects and employment.

Koen Verbruggen, Director of the Geological Survey of Ireland added that “this new map of Bofin depicting the largest section of the island, the offshore landscape which is covered by the sea, affords a map user an enriched experience when viewing the island in its entirety.”

The release of the map is timely for Ireland, as it adds to the lexicon of local area and bay real maps that will eventually cover the whole of the Real Map of Ireland.

ENDS

Notes to Editor

Mapping by INFOMAR

The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). Covering some 125,000 square kilometres of underwater territory, INFOMAR project is producing integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

The surveys are carried using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, GSI inshore launches RV Keary, Cosantoir Bradan and RV Geo and Airborne LIDAR. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping, as well as analysing the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology.

Published: 10/10/2014
Page Type: Web page

 

Irish scientists involved in new world class offshore Geological Atlas

Dublin, Thursday 11th September 2014

Scientists from the Geological Survey of Ireland and UCD have contributed to a new Geological Atlas of the offshore geology of north-west of Europe, which will be launched today at the Geological Survey of Denmark, Copenhagen. The Atlas and associated database was jointly developed by 8 geological surveys and sponsored by more than a dozen exploration companies at a cost of €4 million, and is expected to result in increased exploration activity and research.

Photo shows Geological Survey of Ireland’s Maria Judge (Project Geologist) and Director Koen Verbruggen, with Project manager John Hopper of GEUS (Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland) at the launch in Copenhagen.

The full name of the Atlas project is the Northeast Atlantic Geoscience Tectonostratigraphic Atlas (NAGTEC) and GSI’s involvement grew in partnership the NAG consortium, which is a cooperative framework agreement between the Geological Surveys of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Great Britain, The Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Iceland and Denmark (including Greenland and the Faroe Islands).

This hugely ambitious project began in June 2011, and in its 3 year lifespan has successfully correlated all released offshore data for the entire north-east Atlantic, for the very first time. Using this resource, skilled experts based at the various NAG surveys developed data products, primarily geological maps that detail the development of the North East Atlantic. These maps are now available for scrutiny amongst the NAGTEC Atlas pages, whilst the offshore data is housed in a structured database. It is worth noting that the project, undertaken by the multiple government agencies, was completed on time and on budget and met all targets.

Welcoming the launch, Minster of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Joe McHugh TD, pointed out that the long term benefits to Ireland, as a result of participation in NAGTEC are predicted to be significant:
• Datasets can be used by exploration companies to aid exploration.
• The majority of sponsoring companies are not active in Ireland but will now be more aware of Irish opportunities.
• The data will continue to stimulate research on offshore Ireland.
• This project will also highlight data and knowledge gaps for further exploration and research.
• New international research links have been forged between the surveys, which will result in more projects.

The Minster added that “ this new data is also very timely in the context of the Atlantic exploration licensing round which was opened this summer and concludes in September 2015.”

The Irish contribution to the NAGTEC project was co-ordinated by Maria Judge, INFOMAR Geologist at the Geological Survey of Ireland, and employed technical support from a post-doctoral researcher, Dr Kenneth McDermott, who was based at the School of Geological Sciences, UCD under the supervision of Prof. Pat Shannon. The project was also supported by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources’ Petroleum Affairs Division of Ireland, who permitted access to the released offshore petroleum exploration data, from which much of the data products were generated.

The release of the atlas, to sponsoring companies initially, is timely for Ireland, as it comes after new licensing terms have been recently proposed and a new seismic data gathering exercise is underway, while another offshore licensing round will take place in 2015.

Published: 11/09/2014
Page Type: Web page

 

Minister O Dowd launches new Bedrock Geology of Ireland map

Newry, 19 June 2014

Click on the image to download the .pdf

A new bedrock geology map of the island of Ireland is published today by the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) in collaboration with the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland. The map is intended for educational purposes, while at the same time being sufficiently detailed for use as a technical overview of the bedrock geology of Ireland and a contribution to international projects. The map is innovative for one of its scale by representing the onshore and offshore bedrock geology together.

Speaking at the map launch today during the GeoEXPO in Newry, Minister for Natural Resources Fergus O’Dowd said “Importantly, the new map includes data gathered from a number of sources, compiled as part of EU funded initiatives. The map will be distributed to all schools, and the two geological surveys will be ensuring it is widely adopted.”

The map is also available as a free pdf download from http://www.gsi.ie/ and the geological data in ArcGIS geodatabase format will be available for download in the coming days.

ENDS

Note to Editors

The new 1:1,000,000 map is a simplification of the technical Bedrock Geological Map of Ireland 1:500,000 map, published in 2006 as a collaborative product between the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland and the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland under their Framework for Cooperation
The new map data were initially served up online for the international OneGeology project (http://www.onegeology-europe.org/) and EMODnet project (http://www.emodnet-geology.eu/), but are here reworked to present the geological history and rocks of Ireland.

The map aims to be sufficiently attractive and easy to read to be useful in education, while at the same time being sufficiently detailed for use as a technical overview of the bedrock geology of Ireland and a contribution to international projects and derived map products.

The map launch took place at the Mourne Cooley Gullion GeoEXPO Geotourism Conference and Exhibition Fair in Newry.

High and low resolution jpegs of the map are available upon request.

Published: 19/06/2014
Page Type: Web page

Ministers Deenihan and O'Dowd launch book on Irelands rich shipwreck heritage
“Warships, U-boats & Liners – A Guide to Shipwrecks Mapped in Irish Waters”

Dublin, Wednesday 14th November 2012

In Dublin's Custom House today a stunning new book that showcases some of the more spectacular and important shipwrecks in Irish waters was unveiled. Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Jimmy Deenihan, TD together with Fergus O’Dowd TD, Minister of State, Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, officially launched the beautifully illustrated “Warships, U-Boats & Liners - A Guide to Shipwrecks Mapped in Irish Waters.”

For the past 12 years Ireland’s offshore waters and coastal seas have been subject to one of the largest seabed surveys in the world in a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute. Photographic and sonar images of over 300 shipwrecks have been compiled during the survey in co-operation with the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht’s Underwater Archaeology Unit (UAU), part of the National Monuments Service.

The collaboration between the State Bodies has led to the production of the new book which traces the fascinating history of 60 of the most historic shipwrecks around the Irish coast. The narrative combines archaeology, history and marine mapping and includes never before seen graphic imagery of how these shipwrecks lie on the seafloor today. It also provides in-depth historical background to each ship’s construction, history and ultimate fate.

The joint GSI and Marine Institute INFOMAR project, and its predecessor the Irish National Seabed Survey, make up the largest civilian marine mapping programme worldwide and, according to Minister O’Dowd, have “truly made Ireland a leader in this field of endeavour.” Over a similar period the UAU has built up an extensive database of shipwrecks (The Shipwreck Inventory of Ireland). “The current database holds over 13,000 wrecks”, said Minister Deenihan, “and is an essential management tool for the preservation, protection and promotion of Ireland’s rich maritime archaeological heritage.”

Minister O’Dowd, commented that “as an island nation we instinctively know that our seas are important, but perhaps we are not fully aware of the scale of this natural resource and heritage they hold”. He pointed out that “over 80% of our national territory lies beneath our seas, and that many of the benefits that might be realised for the Country from this resource, are as yet undiscovered.”

Minister Deenihan remarked that many of the shipwrecks contained in the book “are important links to major events in our past that need to be monitored to ensure they are protected and preserved.” The Minister said that there was “a huge maritime dimension to the shaping of our history in the years leading up to the foundation of the State” and that he was “very much aware of the importance of many of these wrecks to our history.“

Pointing out that the publication reflected his Department’s commitment to creating an awareness and appreciation of archaeology, Minister Deenihan said that it was also “a showcase of some of the best dive sites in the world which will undoubtedly attract many visitors from near and far”

Both Ministers congratulated the authors, Karl Brady (UAU), Charise McKeon (GSI), James Lyttleton (UCC) and Ian Lawler (BIM), of this publication and highlighted the book as an excellent example of two different government departments working together in partnership, bringing together expertise in archaeology and marine mapping to highlight Ireland’s leading role in seabed mapping and protection and promotion of marine cultural heritage.

Ends.

Notes to Editors

Warships, U-Boats & Liners - A Guide to Shipwrecks Mapped in Irish Waters is available from the Government Stationery Office, major booksellers and GSI’s online shop GSI Shop priced at €25.

INFOMAR: The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between GSI and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey. INFOMAR is producing integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed. The surveys are carried using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, GSI’s inshore launches RV Keary and RV Geo and Airborne LIDAR. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping, as well as to analyse the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology. See http://www.infomar.ie/ and http://www.gsi.ie/

The Underwater Archaeology Unit (UAU) is an integral part of the National Monuments Service, Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and is responsible for the management, protection and recording of underwater archaeological sites and wrecks in Ireland’s inland and coastal waters. Since its establishment in 1997 the UAU has created an extensive archive of shipwrecks, with over 13,000 documented to date. The UAU’s brief includes the quantification of the underwater cultural resource, licensing of dives on protected sites, dealing with threats to underwater archaeology and mitigating development impacts. The UAU has also undertaken surveys and excavations at previously known and newly discovered sites, adding a new layer to our existing knowledge of our island’s history. The work of the UAU in this regard is helping to ensure that the evidence for past connections to the sea and inland waterways is recognised and protected for the enjoyment and benefit of all.

The Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), founded in 1845, is the National Earth Science Agency and a division of the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources. The GSI is responsible for creating a broad range of products, including maps, reports and databases, and acts as a knowledge centre and project partner in all aspects of Irish geology.

The National Monuments Service (NMS) is part of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and plays a key role in the protection of our heritage. The NMS has a responsibility for archaeological issues arising at National Monuments in State care. The conservation and management (including visitor services) of National Monuments is the responsibility of the Office of Public Works. The NMS carries out surveys of known sites and where sites are thought to be located and compiles inventories of sites and monuments. It regulates archaeological excavations, the use of metal detection devices for archaeological purposes and diving on historic wrecks and underwater archaeological sites. It implements the legislation in relation to the protection of monuments and sites, and provides advice to planning authorities. The NMS provides advice to planning authorities on development proposals (development plans, heritage plans, and individual planning applications) that may have implications for the archaeological heritage. It provides advice to individuals and local groups on archaeological issues.

 

Minister O’Dowd announces 20 new high-end Marine Research jobs at BT Young Scientist Exhibition

Geological Survey showcases flagship projects – INFOMAR (Marine Research) and Tellus Border (Environment) - to the RDS thousands, who can also attempt gold panning and a 3D flying experience!

Dublin, Thursday 12th January 2012

Students from across Ireland will find out that Geology Rocks at the Geological Survey of Ireland’s fully interactive “Geological Sciences” stand at this year’s BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition. A team of professional geologists – but ready for fun! - will be on hand in Dublin’s RDS from 12th-14th January hosting a range of interactive activities revealing the extraordinary formation of our precious rocks, minerals and landscape.

Visiting the GSI stand at the BTYSE today, Minister for Natural Resources, Fergus O’Dowd, announced a programme of applied research that will support more than 20 high end jobs in 2012. The research is part of INFOMAR, the national marine mapping programme, being conducted by the Geological Survey and Marine Institute and funded by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. The Minister stated, “I am particularly pleased to be able to announce the successful programme, while visiting the Young scientists Exhibition, which showcases the scientific talent being developed in Ireland. The 23 projects being funded under INFOMAR range from evaluations of tidal energy sites, to studies of Dublin bay and development of an online marine resources game. All the projects build on the vast mount of data being gathered under our national marine mapping programme, and represent the real world projects that can contribute to the economy and employ our young scientists in the future.”

From marvellous minerals to fabulous fossils, wondrous water resources and extraordinary earthquakes, visitors to the stand will get an in-depth look at the geology of Ireland and the earth all around us. They can also experience an amazing geo-visionary flying experience and try their hand at gold panning! In addition, marine scientists from INFOMAR will be on hand to explain how most of Ireland is actually under the sea! And to really help visitors get to grips with ‘Understanding Underground’, the team from the EU-funded Tellus Border Project - a ground-breaking geological mapping project of the border region of Ireland – will be revealing how the project will help us get to grips with our landscapes.

The Geological Sciences stand is located in the Eco Zone (stand 12) at the Exhibition. It contains exhibitions from the Tellus Border, INFOMAR and Groundwater Protection projects and exhibitions from Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies and the Natural History Museum of Ireland.

ENDS

Notes to the Editors

INFOMAR Project

The INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). INFOMAR project will produce integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed. The surveys are carried using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, inshore launches and Airborne LIDAR. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping, as well as analyse the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology. See www.infomar.ie and www.gsi.ie

New Research Jobs supported by INFOMAR

These jobs announced by Minister O’Dowd originate from the latest round of funded research under INFOMAR and follow on from previous programmes that have covered topics from 3D visualisation to Cold water coral studies. In each case the projects will run for up to a year, and may lead to commercial development at their conclusion. Nine of the projects are being led by SMEs with 14 led by Research Groups and almost all involve multi-partner collaborations.

Among the projects selected for funding are:

  • A popular online marine resource game, by REAL SIM Ltd of Galway.

This project will develop an online game, based on the popularity of games such as Farmville, where participants can build up a fishing fleet, fish farms and other enterprises offshore. However the game will include real world data such as the maps from the INFOMAR Project and real world figures such as Fish Stock numbers from the Marine institute. Thus players can have fun and also learn about the implications of over-fishing, sustainable development and the complexity of Ireland’s offshore.

REAL SIM are an Irish SME based in Galway , who provide highly realistic interactive and passive 3D simulations of the world around us, for a wide range of clients and applications, which include urban planning, marine simulation, historical environment re-construction, industrial process and medical device simulation. They were winners of the ITAG Emerging ICT Company of the Year, 2011. Other partners include NUIG and the University of Tromso in Norway. See www.realsim.ie

  • Coastal Seabed Observatory Platform (COSOP), by Techworks, Dun Laoghaire

This project will develop a robust and low cost self-powered mobile seabed lander device, essentially a movable platform for sensing data in the sea. Such a device is vital for gathering information for not just scientific purposes but to support environmental monitoring and development such as renewable energy, fish farms and outfalls. TechWorks Marine provide clients with world-class solutions to monitor the marine environment. They provide products and services to a range of sectors including offshore renewable energy, coastal engineering, ports and harbours, oil and gas, aquaculture, water and utilities, academia, research and statutory monitoring. See www.techworks.ie

  • Development of online webGIS educational portal about Ireland’s Coastal and Marine Geology, University College Cork

This project will develop short video clips on Ireland’s most interesting coastal geology, explained in simple terms by Ireland’s leading geological experts. These clips will then be made available online, with relevant maps, for both students of geology and the general public to enhance learning and tourism. Ireland contains an almost unique diversity of geology for such a small island and this project complements ongoing initiatives in Landscape Tourism to develop it as a location for field trips by overseas universities and colleges. See www.gsi.ie/Education/Landscape+Tourism.htm

Tellus Border

· Launched in July 2011, the EU-funded Tellus Border Project involves an air survey and a ground survey and will run until 2013. Led by world class scientists the information collected by the low flying aircraft, equipped with the latest geological technology, and the team of ‘on the ground’ soil samplers will help us better understand the make-up of our natural resources and plan effectively for their future

· The Tellus Border project is a joint initiative between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland (GSNI), Dundalk Institute of Technology and Queen’s University Belfast and builds on the award-winning Tellus Project which has already successfully mapped Northern Ireland. Data collected during both surveys will be integrated with the existing data to give a cross border geological baseline.

· ‘Tellus’ was the Roman goddess of the earth, also called Terra Mater.

· The Tellus Border Project is the largest of the latest awards under the Environment theme of INTERREG IVA and is part funded by the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government and Northern Ireland’s Department of the Environment.

www.tellusborder.eu

SEUPB

• The Special EU Programmes Body is a North/South Implementation Body sponsored by the Department of Finance and Personnel in Northern Ireland and the Department of Finance in Ireland. It is responsible for managing two EU structural funds Programmes PEACE III and INTERREG IV designed to enhance cross-border co-operation, promote reconciliation and create a more peaceful and prosperous society. The Programmes operate within a clearly defined area including Northern Ireland, the Border Region of Ireland and Western Scotland.

• The INTERREG IVA 2007-2013 Programme is worth €256 million and aims to address the economic and social problems which result from the existence of borders. It supports strategic cross-border co-operation for a more prosperous and sustainable region.

• For more information on the SEUPB please visit www.seupb.eu

Sunken Guinness Ship Revealed

W.M. Barkley

HIGH RESOLUTION images of a merchant ship which was sunk ninety-four years ago today (October 12th) off the coast of Dublin have been revealed by the INFOMAR (INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland’s MARine Resource) Programme. The images were obtained during a mission on the national research vessel the RV Celtic Voyager earlier this year which surveyed the wreck of the first Guinness merchant vessel, the W.M. Barkley.

The detailed seabed images, which include deck features and complex sand wave structures, were recorded by towed sidescan sonar provided by the Moore Marine Group, and give a visual insight into the defensively armed ship that was sunk by a German torpedo in 1917, seven miles east of the Kish Bank off Dublin.


photo Koen Verbruggen Minister Rabbitte Dr Peter Heffernan Eibhlin Roche and David Smith

(Left to right: Koen Verbruggen (GSI) Minister Pat Rabbitte, Dr. Peter Heffernan (Marine Institute), Eibhlin Roche (Guinness Archivist, Guinness Storehouse) and David Smith (Country Director, Diageo Ireland) Photos: Jason Clarke Photography)

In May 2010, during a large scale mapping survey in the Irish Sea by INFOMAR, a national marine study run by the Marine Institute and the Geological Survey of Ireland, identified a seabed feature which, to the trained eye, was discernable as a potential shipwreck lying in the same position recorded on the Admiralty Chart, the EU wreck site and UK Hydrographic Office wreck site directories, as well as a survey conducted in the 1980s as the last known position of the W.M.Barkley.

Viewing the spectacular imagery of the shipwreck Minister for Communications, Energy & Natural Resources, Pat Rabbitte, said “I am delighted to note the continued excellence of the valuable work being carried out under the INFOMAR project.  These images from the deep reveal a unique view of part of Ireland’s marine heritage and I am delighted to announce details of INFOMAR’’s annual seminar to be held in Galway on November 16 and 17th.”

Ninety four years ago on the dark night of October 12th 1917 the W.M.Barkley was torpedoed without warning by the German submarine UC-75. Within minutes the ship, which was owned and operated by the Guinness Company of Dublin, broke in two and sank, taking with her to the bottom four men including her Captain and leaving the rest of her crew to face the sea in an open lifeboat. Now, the darkness where the ship has lain in pieces has been disturbed, probed by fingers of sound that are mapping the seabed in incredible details and bringing to light the position of this famous Irish shipwreck.

W.M. Barkley

“As the first Guinness owned ship, the W.M. Barkley played an important role in the story of the transportation of GUINNESS beer overseas,” said Eibhlin Roche, Guinness Archivist. The events of the night of 12th October 1917 are very much part of the history of Guinness that is recorded in the Guinness Archive. It is exciting to finally know the exact resting place of the W.M. Barkley.”

photo Guinness ship archivist Eibhlin Roche

A scale model of the W.M. Barkley is on display in the Transport Gallery of Guinness Storehouse remembering the lives of the Guinness men who both perished and survived the events of 12th October 1917.   These are stories of tragedy and bravery portraying Irish traditional values, and how they were brought to light with the application of cutting-edge technology.

W.M. Barkley

These INFOMAR photos show topographic seafloor images in 3D, showing the partially buried wreck of the W M Barkley lying at a water depth of 56 metres, with deeper scouring around it down to 72 metres (darker colours indicate greater depths).
The images were created from sonar data acquired onboard the Marine Institute’s research vessel RV Celtic Voyager, during INFOMAR Programme mapping in 2010 and 2011 with data processed by INFOMAR's Fabio Sachetti (University of Ulster) and Charise McKeon (Geological Survey of Ireland).

Notes to Editor
History

On the 12th October 1917, Guinness’s merchant vessel W. M. Barkley set sail from Dublin bound for Liverpool with a cargo of “hogshead” barrels of the company’s world-famous stout. The ship had been originally built for the John Kelly coal company in 1898 by the Scottish shipbuilding company Ailsa Shipping of Troon, but had been sold to Guinness in 1913. She had a displacement of some 569 Gross Registered tons unladen and was the first Irish merchant ship to be ‘defensively armed’ with guns against attack by the German Navy.

Unfortunately for the W.M. Barkley, however, the deadly attack that sank her came from below the waves in the form of a torpedo from the German submarine UC-75. The small minelaying submarine was equipped with 18 mines, seven torpedoes and a deck gun and had been built at the Vulcan ship yard in Hamburg. Like the W.M. Barkley it displaced 545 tons in total.

The impact from the torpedo broke the ship’s back, breaking her sides and leaving her to sink within minutes. Survivors took to the lifeboats and rowed away from the sinking hull to avoid getting dragged down by the suction of the sinking ship.

As survivor Thomas McGlue described, “Then we saw the U-boat lying astern. I thought she was a collier, she looked so big. There were seven Germans in the conning tower, all looking down at us through binoculars. We hailed the captain and asked him to pick us up. He called us alongside and then he asked us the name of our boat, the cargo she was carrying, who the owners were and where she was registered. He spoke better English that we did. . . . He said we could go . . . Then he pointed out the shore lights and told us to steer for them.”

With the survivors left alone in the darkness, surrounded by barrels of stout, they put out a sea anchor after a failed attempt to row for the Kish lightship. They were finally rescued by the crew of the passing collier Donnet Head, on course for Dublin, who took them on board and tied their lifeboat alongside. They arrived back in port at 5.00 a.m. where they were warmed by a fire and given dry clothes and brandy by the Guinness superintendent.

For almost a century, the W.M. Barkley remained alone in the darkness of the sea. Local fishermen may have noted the wreck on their charts as a trawl snag to avoid, but full details of the wreck and how it lay on the seabed only came to light recently, firstly through an intrepid expedition by local amateur divers. The development of special ‘Tri-Mix’ mixed-gas diving equipment for the sports market means even wrecks as deep as the W.M. Barkley, which lies below 57 metres of water, have become accessible.

A sports diver who visited the wreck in 2003 described how the starboard side of the ship was gone but that the stern seemed in good condition. A large sand wave had also built up around the wreck, running from east to west. These discoveries were followed up in the form of research by INFORMAR, Ireland’s most extensive and accurate inshore seabed mapping exercise.

Mapping by INFOMAR

The INFOMAR programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute and is the successor to the Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS). Covering some 125,000 square kilometres of underwater territory, the INFOMAR project will produce integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

The surveys are carried using a range of platforms, including the Marine Institute’s RV Celtic Explorer and RV Celtic Voyager, inshore launches and Airborne LIDAR. The programme uses ship-mounted acoustic multibeam sonar and geophysical technology to provide vital information on water depth for safe shipping, as well as analyse the properties of the seabed for information that can guide fishing, ocean renewable development, environmental protection, and marine archaeology.

As the INFOMAR imagery data collected during the large scale mapping survey in May 2010 was analysed and reprocessed the shape of a broken vessel on the seabed became clear, in the same position as the last known recording of the W.M.Barkley. It lay from East North East to West South West on the sandy bottom, which had been scoured around the wreck by the strong prevailing currents into large hollows and ridges. Following on from this, two members of the INFOMAR team paid a visit to the Guinness Storehouse exhibition where a model of the W.M.Barkley is on display and noted the similarity of her shape to the detailed seabed images.

An opportunity arose a year later to visit the wreck site again as the R.V. Celtic Voyager was passing by on another mission. A towed sidescan sonar was provided by the Moore Marine Group and deployed by their archaeological expert to add a new layer of discovery to this historic wreck and war grave. This device, towed behind the vessel close to the seabed, provided higher resolution imagery showing deck features and complex sand wave structures around the ship until bad weather put a halt to proceedings.

The next step for INFOMAR, and Guinness, is to co-ordinate an opportunity where enough data can be acquired to build up the full picture of the state of the W.M.Barkley. The vision is to deploy a miniature robot submarine with an onboard camera to bring back high-resolution pictures of the famous stout company’s long-lost sunken ship.

The INFOMAR Annual Seminar will take place at the Marine Institute in Galway on November 16 & 17, see INFOMAR.ie home page for details.

RV Celtic Voyager

The Celtic Voyager is a 31.4m multi-purpose research vessel. The vessel is based in Galway, which is ideally located as the gateway to the Atlantic and geographically close to the main working areas. The vessel has wet, dry and chemical laboratories, which are permanently fitted with standard scientific equipment and can accommodate 6 - 8 scientists with a maximum endurance of 14 days. The vessel is manned by a very experienced crew who are highly skilled with the handling and deployment of scientific equipment.

The Celtic Voyager facilitates the collection of fisheries, geophysical, oceanographic and environmental data and provides practical training for the next generation of marine scientists. This research is of crucial national importance, to ensure the development of Ireland's vast natural resource in a sustainable manner.

Side-scan sonar

Side-scan sonar is a category of sonar system that is used to efficiently create an image of large areas of the sea floor. It is often used to conduct surveys for maritime archaeology, and in conjunction with seafloor samples it is able to provide an understanding of the differences in material and texture type of the seabed.
Side scan uses a sonar device that emits conical or fan-shaped pulses down toward the seafloor across a wide angle perpendicular to the path of the sensor through the water. This may be towed from a surface vessel or submarine, or mounted on the ship's hull.

The intensity of the acoustic reflections from the seafloor of this fan-shaped beam is recorded in a series of cross-track slices. When combined together along the direction of motion, these pieces form an image of the sea floor within the swath (coverage width) of the beam. The sound frequencies used in side-scan sonar usually range from 100 to 500 kHz; higher frequencies yield better resolution but less range.

Moore Marine Group

Moore Marine is a fully integrated marine archaeological, geophysical and oceanographic service provider. They specialise in the provision of services, technical expertise and advice to Private Industry, Institutions and State bodes regarding the impact on and protection of our maritime heritage and environment.
Their technical expertise leads them to undertake a wide variety of projects suited to Environmental Impact Assessments and Pre and Post Developmental Appraisal of Marine Projects such as:

Pier and Harbour developments
Wind farms
Wave farms
Dredging Programmes
Bridge Construction
Pipeline developments
Major Infrastructural Schemes
Moore Marine is a Health and Safety Authority (HAS) and Health and Safety Executive (HSE) registered environmental and archaeological diving contractor. As such we ensure that all dives are undertaken in accordance with diving operations at work regulations and approved Codes of Practice.

Irish Times

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/1212/1224308952263.html

Irish Times

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2011/1012/breaking44.html

Daily Mail

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2048100/In-drink-stay-Guinness-merchant-ship-torpedoed-German-submarine-WWI-Irish-sea.html

Belfast Telegraph

http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/local-national/republic-of-ireland/torpedoed-ship-located-decades-on-16062653.html

Afloat

http://www.afloat.ie/resources/business/marine-science/item/17099-survey-reveals-torpedoed-guinness-ship/

Published: 12/10/2011
Page Type: Web page

 

Media Coverage of INFOMAR

INFOMAR recently featured on national tv highlighting the work of the programme. TG4's Fórsaí Fo-Thuinn (Underwater Forces) is part of a series called Céad Seans and featured INFOMAR's Eoin MacCraith who provided an overview of INFOMAR's survey operations and the data acquired.

Nationwide featured INFOMAR's recent collaboration with the Department of Arts, Heriatge and the Gaeltacht's underwater archaeology unit exploring a possible Spanish Armada shipwreck off the coast of Burtonport, Co Donegal.

View these programmes using the links below.

Nationwide

http://www.rte.ie/player/#!v=1114150

TG4

http://webclient.tg4.frankfurt1.tsicmds.com/main.aspx?content=667676195841

Published: 30/09/2011
Page Type: Web page

INFOMAR provide dive platform to underwater archaeologists exploring a wreck
off the Donegal coast.

INFOMAR supplied one of its research vessels, the RV Keary, as the main dive vessel to the the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht’s underwater archaeology unit exploring a possible Spanish Armada ship off Donegal. Read more about the dive in the national media.

Work continues at historic ship wreck

http://www.donegaldemocrat.ie/lifestyle/entertainment/
work_continues_at_historic_ship_wreck_1_2945253

Donegal wreck may have Spanish Armada link

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/0806/1224301949590.html

Sunken Armada vessel discovered off coast

http://www.examiner.ie/ireland/sunken-armada-vessel-discovered-off-coast-163413.html

'Spanish Armada' wreck discovered

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2011/0805/breaking43.html

Spanish Armada vessel found off Donegal

http://www.rte.ie/news/2011/0805/donegal.html

Spanish Armada ship found off Donegal Coast

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-14418698

Armada wreck discovered off Donegal

http://www.independent.ie/breaking-news/national-news/armada-wreck-discovered-off-donegal-2841288.html

Published: 23/08/2011
Page Type: Web page

Media Coverage of The VENTuRE Cruise: Researching and Recovering information from the deep.

Marine geologist Maria Judge based at the Geological Survey of Ireland was a member of the team aboard the national research vessel RV Celtic Explorer which discovered hydrothermal vents along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Read more about the cruise in the national media. Read about her trip on the INFOMAR Blog

Riches of the deep

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2011/0806/1224301949316.html

Irish scientists find new life in Atlantic’s depths

http://www.examiner.ie/ireland/irish-scientists-find-new-life-in-atlantics-depths-163313.html#ixzz1VqqMwIWb

Strange creatures lurking on floor of Atlantic may hold clues to origin of life

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/0805/1224301873609.html

Volcanic vent system found in Atlantic

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/0804/1224301821844.html

Scientists@Sea Blog

http://scientistsatsea.blogspot.com/2011_08_01_archive.html

Major Scientific Discovery on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge

http://www.marine.ie/home/aboutus/newsroom/pressreleases/
MajorDiscoveryonthemidAtlanticRidge.htm

Major Scientific Discovery on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge

http://press.nationalgeographic.com/pressroom/index.jsp?pageID=
pressReleases_detail&siteID=1&cid=1312811469257

Irish marine expedition to map new ecosystem

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2011/0713/1224300654793.html

What lies beneath?

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/sciencetoday/2011/0505/1224296125192.html

Published: 23/08/2011
Page Type: Web page

Media Coverage of INSS/INFOMAR from Geoscience 2010 and Atlas of the Deep-Water Seabed: Ireland book launch

Following on from the success of the Geoscience 2010 conference and the launch of the new "Atlas of the Deep-Water Seabed: Ireland" authored by Boris Dorschel and Andy Wheeler of University College Cork (UCC) and Xavier Monteys and Koen Verbruggen of the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI), there has been lots of coverage of Irish National Seabed Survey (INSS) and INFOMAR datasets in the national media.... Read More

Views of Ireland you won't have seen before

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/weekend/2011/0115/1224287523424.html

Enter the depths of the abyss in 3D

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/sciencetoday/2010/1104/1224282628890.html


Published: 09/11/2010
Page Type: Web page

INFOMAR - Request for Tender

Request for Tender (RFT) for the provision of hydrographic services in connection with the seabed mapping of Ireland’s offshore. The GSI (or its partners and agents as the GSI may specify) invites tenders to supply the GSI with a Hydrographic Service to collect bathymetric data. The objective of the survey is to produce bathymetric data for Mannin Bay, Co Galway and Achill, Co. Mayo and Blacksod Bay, Co. Mayo and Lough Swilly, Co. Donegal, and Broadhaven Bay, Co Mayo, and Lower Lough Foyle, Co. Donegal and Shannon Estuary, Co. Limerick, and Inner Dingle Bay, Co. Kerry....Download .pdf
Published: 27/10/2009
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Media Coverage of INSS/INFOMAR on RTE's SEASCAPES. Ireland Should Lead Maritime Europe

The full extent of Ireland's maritime resources was revealed this week, a seabed area which is the biggest of any nation in the European Union, ten times bigger than the land area of the Ireland on which we live. With the potential for hydrocarbon discoveries, marine biotechnological developments, fish resources, fish farming, our seabed resources and the quality of the marine research by Irish scientists is a good reason why Ireland should be dictating maritime policy to Europe..... Read More.

Listen to the programme
Published: 09/10/2009
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State’s Seabed Mapping Programme to generate benefits valued at €275m

Delegates at an international conference of marine scientists, SEABED 10, in Dublin next week will hear how an independent study has valued the benefits of the state’s marine mapping programme at €275 million. This is more than four times what will be spent completing the “INFOMAR” programme. This is one of the largest science projects ever undertaken in Ireland and, in an excellent example of co-operation between state bodies, it is being jointly managed by the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute (MI).

In announcing the conference, Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Mr. Conor Lenihan, TD., commented “Ireland leads the way in global marine science and seabed mapping and this conference will showcase our achievements to date. At a time of financial difficulties it is crucial that such projects can be demonstrated to have a significant fiscal benefit to the state and I welcome the findings of a PricewaterhouseCoopers report on INFOMAR showing a return of over four times the cost." The benefits accrue across a range of sectors from fishing, tourism and energy, to compliance with international legislation and the research sector. The study, as well as tangible examples of real benefits to the state, will be presented at the conference.

The state’s latest research vessel the RV KEARY, a dedicated inshore mapping launch, will also be named during the conference. The vessel is a 15 metre aluminium catamaran, purpose-built for inshore mapping with state of the art technology. Amongst her best attributes is her ability to deliver exceptional depth accuracy, vital for safe transport and offshore development and protection. She is named after the late Raymond Keary, distinguished Irish marine geologist who had the vision of a national marine mapping project. According to Minister Lenihan, “in commissioning the new vessel, KEARY, we will also see cost effective mapping of our shallowest waters and a valuable addition to our national research capacity.”

One project based on seabed mapping results has just returned from deepwater filming of coral reefs on parts of the Rockall Bank for the very first time. The survey partners - GSI, MI and the National Parks and Wildlife Service - employed the Marine Institute vessel, the Celtic Explorer and her new remotely operated vehicle, the ROV Holland. This study will assist the process of designation of new offshore Special Areas of Conservation.

The Conference takes place at Liberty Hall in Dublin on October 5th and 6th, with the vessel-naming at Poolbeg Marina on Tuesday evening at 5.45. Interested parties can register at http://www.infomar.ie/.

Notes:

INFOMAR stands for Integrated Mapping for the Sustainable Development of Irelands Marine Resource. The INFOMAR website is http://www.infomar.ie/.

The INFOMAR project is an ambitious joint venture to map Ireland’s most productive and commercially valuable inshore waters and is being undertaken by Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute, funded by the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources. Covering some 125,000 square kilometres of underwater territory, the INFOMAR project is producing integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

INFOMAR follows on from the Irish National Seabed Survey, which mapped all of Ireland’s deeper waters between 1999-2005, and taken together they represent one of the largest such projects undertaken anywhere in the world.

Use of the data obtained under the project include:

- the development of offshore energy, with the mapping key to identifying suitable sites and cable routes for wind, wave and tidal generators.

- safer offshore navigation due to updated charts

- supports work being carried out under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, whereby Ireland has been successful in extended continental shelf submissions

- simulation of tides which is useful for the aquaculture and costal protection engineers

- production of maps on the nature of the seabed (whether mud, sand, rock or gravel) which is used in both environmental protection and more efficient fishing practices.

- provision of updates for the national shipwrecks database maintained by National Monuments Service and used by sport fishermen and divers.

Raymond Keary 1937-2003 RIP
Ray Keary was a respected and important employee of the Geological Survey of Ireland for over two decades, where he founded the Marine Geology programme having worked with NUIG for fifteen years prior to that. His influence in his chosen field of Marine Science was huge and his outstanding legacy is Ireland’s seabed mapping programme that he tirelessly lobbied for.

The Research Vessel KEARY
The RV Keary is a purpose built, aluminium catamaran designed for the survey of shallow waters, with a draft of only 1.7m. The 15 metre fully-equipped and state of the art hydrographic/geophysical launch will deliver survey data that will meet all required international specifications. Equipment includes a multi-beam echo sounder for imaging the seabed at cm scale resolution, GPS navigation, side-scan sonar for shipwreck identification, seabed profiler and Automatic Identification System. The vessel was delivered under contract by Irish company, IMAR Survey of Galway.

First ever imagery of newly discovered reefs on Rockall Bank, from a National Parks & Wildlife Service survey, collaborating with GSI & MI, and investigating features identified from the national mapping programme. Pictures taken from RV Celtic Explorer.

Further information and images available from:
Press Office

Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources

Email: press.office@dcenr.gov.ie

Or Koen Verbruggen, GSI Tel 087 2042974

For Seabed10 Conference details see http://www.infomar.ie/

To register contact enda.gallagher@gsi.ie

Published: 02/10/2009
Page Type: Web page

Minister Power commits to continuation of INFOMAR

Minister of State at the Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Seán Power, today set out detail of upcoming projects in the National Marine Mapping Programme (INFOMAR), and pledged Government commitment to the continuation of "the most valuable resource for marine research in Ireland and beyond."
Published: 30 Dec 2008
Page Type: Press Release

Celtic Voyager Survey Reveals Sea floor and Geology of Galway Bay

A survey of Galway Bay’s seabed onboard the RV Celtic Voyager this summer has revealed, for the first time, the detailed seafloor and geology of the bay.
Published: 13 Sep 2007
Page Type: Press Release

INFOMAR Survey of Galway Bay

The INFOMAR marine survey partnership between the Marine Institute and the Geological Survey of Ireland charts Galway Bay.
Published: 10 Jul 2007
Page Type: Press Release

INFOMAR Seafloor Survey Discovers Glacial Moraine

New discoveries on the latest leg of the INFOMAR seafloor survey by Geological Survey of Ireland and Marine Institute include a major glacial moraine and a large trench just 300-400 metres off the Dingle coast.
Published: 11 Jun 2007
Page Type: Press Release

INFOMAR - Mapping Ireland Underwater

John Browne, TD, Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, and 75 local primary school children visited the RV Celtic Explorer during an INFOMAR port call today (27/04/07) in Rosslare. Speaking onboard the RV Celtic Explorer, the Minister stressed the need for accurate information on Ireland’s largest natural resource and the added value that such information could bring to planning, navigation, and sustainable resource management.
Published: 27 Apr 2007
Page Type: Press Release

 

     
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