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Profilers

Credit: OOI Cabled Array program and the Center for Environmental Visualization, University of Washington

Credit: OOI Cabled Array program and the Center for Environmental Visualization, University of Washington

A Profiler is a tethered vehicle that moves through the water column carrying instruments, allowing for them to sample parameters across a depth range. Profilers either track along the mooring riser (wire-following profilers), or include a winch that pays out line allowing the profiler to rise through the water column until fixed depth (shallow profilers).

Profilers are used throughout the OOI on moorings, enabling the sampling of water column parameters at a high vertical resolution.

Profiler Moorings used in the OOI:

GLOBAL PROFILER MOORING
Global Profiler Moorings are located at the Apex site of Global Arrays next to the Apex Surface Moorings and contain one or two Wire-Following Profilers. The Wire-Following Profiler moves through the water column along the mooring riser, continuously sampling ocean characteristics over a specified depth interval.

CABLED DEEP PROFILER MOORING
Cabled Deep Profiler Moorings are attached to a fiber-optic cable and host an instrumented modified Mclane Wire-Following Profiler that travels from up to ~ 2900 m water depth to 150 m beneath the ocean’s surface. Each profiler hosts up to 6 instruments. Data are downloaded via both WiFi and by an inductive link at the base of the mooring.The fiber-optic cable provides the mooring with a large supply of power and bandwidth and is co-located with a Low-Power Jbox, that collects complementary seafloor data.

CABLED SHALLOW PROFILER MOORING
The two-legged shallow profiler moorings, attached to fiber optic cables, are high-power (3 kW) and bandwidth (1 GigE) water column moorings with a broad suite of sensors. They each host a 12 ft across, 7 ton platform at ~ 200 m beneath the ocean’s surface. The platform hosts an instrumented Platform Interface Assembly (including up to 8 instruments) and an instrumented winched shallow profiler pod which houses up to 10 instruments and is tethered to a mooring-mounted winch that pays out line allowing the science pod to rise through the water column until a fixed depth (5m below sea surface to 200 meters deep). Two way, real-time communication allows powerful adaptive sampling capabilities that include pausing of instrument packages in the water column at specific chemical-temperature-biological layers.

COASTAL PROFILER MOORING
Coastal Profiler Moorings are located on the Coastal Arrays and contain a Wire-Following Profiler that houses instruments. The Wire-Following Profiler moves through the water column along the mooring riser, continuously sampling ocean characteristics over a specified depth interval (20 meters below sea surface to 20 m above the bottom).

SURFACE PIERCING PROFILER MOORING
Surface Piercing Profiler Moorings contain a Surface-Piercing Profiler that allows for the sampling of near surface phenomena as the Profiler travels through the water, controlled by a profiler-mounted winch, then breaches the surface. Fine resolution sampling of the water column, particularly at the very surface of the water, provide key insights into the exchange of gases, heat, etc between the atmosphere and the ocean. While on the surface, the profiler transmits data to shore.