Protecting ireland’s aquaculture

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Courtesy of OTT Hydromet - a member of Hach Company

Background
  • Mulroy Bay in North West Ireland is a pristine marine environment with a number of rare and sensitive habitats. As a result Mulroy Bay is designated as a Special Area of Conservation under the EU Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC).
  • The sheltered nature of the bay has seen it develop into a major centre for aquaculture producing shellfish and salmon with an annual value of €30m.
  • After the detailed design, Environmental Impact Assessment, consultations and statutory application process, all necessary permissions were received for the construction of a major new bridge crossing with construction commencing in January 2007.
  • The monitoring area is subject to very high (6 knots) tidal velocities.

Task

  • To provide a stable platform for monitoring of water quality and water velocity.
  • To publish near real-time water quality data from 4 sites either side of the bridge works to protect the interests of the aquaculture stakeholders and the sensitive habitats located in proximity to the bridge crossing.
  • Provide information on threshold limit alarm breaches via SMS in the event of DO sag or high turbidity levels.
  • To develop and host a new web site for WQ data.
  • OTT were contracted in July 2007 to provide a complete turnkey solution.

Monitoring Solution

  • OTT UK designed, supplied and installed 4 No. buoy mounted solutions with DS5X, OTT Logosens, Wavecom modems and an alternative (solar panel) 12 V power supply.
  • Hach DS5X is a multiparameter sonde designed for long term deployment in marine applications.
  • The system was designed to provide threshold limit alarms and data publishing to a new web site.
  • High quality double skin enclosures mounted on the buoys offer protection against water damage.
  • The sonde is easily removable for regular cleaning and calibration.
  • Velocity monitoring with directional information ensures easy tracking of potential contaminant impact.

The Advantages

  • The comprehensive OTT logging and communications package offers a robust and flexible monitoring solution
  • The DS5X multiparameter sonde links easily with the OTT station management system
  • SMS data and alarm functionality offers a cheap and reliable data handling solution
  • Long term deployment in a marine application possible with high grade plastic, stainless steel and titanium materials
  • Remote data transfer with alarming features and web publishing for easy access to data for all stakeholders

Summary

  • OTT UK delivered an interim solution within 4 weeks of award with a complete solution delivered on time and on budget.
  • 4 monitoring buoys have been operational since October 2007 with 100% data collection.
  • Major civils work is being undertaken in a marine conservation area with a monitoring programme in place to ensure all stakeholders have a high confidence in a successful project.

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