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Objective 1: To map the structural and genetic variability, the framework-constructing potential, and the longevity of Deep Water Coral (DWC) ecosystems Objective 2: To assess hydrographic and other local physical forcing factors affecting Benthic Boundary Layer (BBL) sediment particle dynamics and POC supply in the vicinity of DWC ecosystems Objective 3: To describe the DWC ecosystem, its dynamics and functioning; investigate coral biology and behaviour and assess coral sensitivity to natural and anthropogenic stressors Objective 4: To assign a sensitivity code, identify the major conservation issues (and increase public awareness), and make recommendations for the sustainable use of the DWC ecosystem
1. To develop a deep water observation system 2. Detailed design document, workplan and risk register and reviewed and agreed by steering group, procurement of components. 3. Deep water tests of acoustic communications system performed. pilot data dissemination and archival system. Dry test DWOS -1 4. Deployment in near lab test environment eg. Dunstaffnage bay with regular inspections. Collect, analyse, disseminate and archive sensor and house keeping data 5. Deploy in exposed but coastal stratified site in western Irish Sea, with two visual inspections. Collect, analyse, disseminate and archive sensor and house keeping data. Liaison with Met Office regarding deployment logistics. 6. Six months Deployment at Deep Water site; Collect, analyse, disseminate and archive sensor and house keeping data; Distribute data to customers. Revisit mooring site after six months recover and redeploy. 7. Final Technical Report and Final Project Report: Second six months Deployment at Deep Water site (as decreed by steering group); Collect, analyse, disseminate and archive sensor and house keeping data. Analysis of complete data handling chain performed; impact of data on customer base assessed, recommendations for continuance of DWOS as an operational system.