Active Research

Ocean Networks Canada supports a wide variety of ongoing research projects including:

ice Arctic Studies
Tracking of the physical and biogeochemical processes in the Arctic enables us to witness the most rapid and profound impacts of global climate change, in particular the dramatic loss of summer sea ice, the increase in extreme weather events and changing climate regimes.

Deep-sea Forensic Investigations
Understanding the decay of submerged carcasses helps knowing the time of death and differentiating between wounds inflicted before or at the time of death from normal decay processes, which are of paramount value in any homicide investigation.

thornyhead Gas Hydrate Studies
Variation and dynamics of gas hydrate processes and related benthic communities are observed at Barkley Canyon, where exposed gas hydrate exists and Wally the remotely operated crawler is installed, and at Clayoquot Slope, where strong active gas venting is being monitored.
anemone Ecosystem Function
Marine sediment ecosystems cover more of Earth than all other habitats combined, contributing significantly to global nutrient cycles, carbon and oxygen budgets, pollutant dynamics, and fisheries production. Benthic ecology research combines camera observations and interactive sampling with sediment traps and data from multiple sensors collecting uninterrupted measurements of temperature, oxygen, and nitrate.
dolphin Marine Mammals
Underwater sound from human activities affects the physiology and behaviour of marine fauna. Ocean Networks Canada employs hydrophones to assess the large-scale acoustic ecology in the Strait of Georgia, near the mouth of the Fraser River, and on the NEPTUNE array off the West coast of Vancouver Island.
rotsonar Sediment and Benthic Dynamics
Predominantly sonar and camera images as well as sediment trap samples are used for the study of sediment processes and benthic interactions. Continuous long-term monitoring is especially important to record sediment deposits such as from regular sedimentation, resuspension of sediments, seasonal sedimentation as from river freshets, occurring either periodically or as singular events.
japantsunami Tsunami Studies
Bottom pressure recorders developed at the Natural Resources Canada Pacific Geoscience Centre are part of a tsunami array deployed on the NEPTUNE observatory that stretches from the deep ocean to the inner continental shelf, and detect about one major tsunami per year.
blacksmoker Hydrothermal Vent Turbulence
Long time series are required to estimate heat, chemical, and biological fluxes from Earth’s crust upward into the ocean via hydrothermal vents. Ocean Networks Canada has cabled and instrumented various sites of the Endeavour Segment of the Juan de Fuca spreading ridge.

See also the past history of Working Group Activity Updates.