Ocean Technology Center
The Ocean Technology Center (OTC) began operations in October 1993 under the auspices of the National Science Foundation's Industry-University Cooperative Research Centers Program. The Center's mission is to perform basic and applied research of interest to the corporate and government agencies that make up the membership. OTC research is performed by faculty, staff, and graduate students at both the Bay Campus and the Kingston Campus of URI. The research is funded by dues paid by OTC members. During this two-year period, OTC funded five projects.
OTC is funded by a mix of federal and state agencies together with corporate membership dues. NSF grants support Center administration and travel while federal agency and corporate memberships fund research projects. Total funding for this period was $290,000 broken down as follows:
Federal and State ($215,000)
Applied Science Assoc.
Acoustic Bullets: Small packets of acoustic energy can be applied to underwater object locations and in medical devices. Researchers are analyzing the theory behind the acoustic bullet concept and design and have built a prototype projector array for testing.
Underwater Winch Profiler: Instead of floating on the surface of the water, this innovative profiler is moored on the ocean bottom, reels out a sensor package, relays the data to shore via radio link, and is winched back to the bottom. This profiler measures oceanographic parameterstemperature, salinity, and nutrientsin the coastal environment.
COASTMAP: Real time data, integrated into a soft-ware system called COASTMAP, is stored, analyzed, and used in predictive models such as pollution transport models. A prototype has been built and is collecting data via radio link from the Narrow River.
Remote Classification of Seafloor Sediments: Identifying ocean bottom sediments is very useful, but the methods commonly usedacoustic echoes or physical samplingare not highly reliable. This project tests various techniques to remotely classify seafloor sediments.
GIS for Ocean Surveying: The purpose of this project is to increase the efficiency of ship surveying operations by developing a real-time geographic information system to manage survey planning, data collection, and processing. The work will integrate public domaine and industry software into a single GIS-based package.
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