The general objective of NeXOS is to develop new cost-effective, innovative and compact integrated multifunctional sensor systems (ocean optics, ocean passive acoustics, and sensors for an Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries (EAF)), which can be deployed from mobile and fixed ocean observing platforms, as well as to develop downstream services for the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS), Good Environmental Status (GES) of European marine waters (Marine Framework Strategy Directive) and the European Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).
NeXOS is a collaborative project funded by the European Commission 7th Framework Programme, under the call OCEAN-2013.2 - The Ocean of Tomorrow 2013 - Innovative multifunctional sensors for in-situ monitoring of marine environment and related maritime activities. It is composed of 21 partners including public entities, small and , companies and scientific organizations from 6 European countries.
NeXOS will introduce the multi-platform concept linking traditional sensor use on a dedicated platform to the use of multifunctional sensors on several types of platforms.
The challenges of sensor interface interoperability currently result in proprietary solutions for sensor integration, data acquisition, and data flow within and beyond marine observing systems. Even after integration of sensors and data, many marine observing systems retain the data they collect within closed silos. To facilitate greater interoperability and data exchange, NeXOS will implement and contribute to the new generation of Sensor Web Enablement (SWE) standards with the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC).
The protection of sensors from biofouling is an important and specific objective of sensor research and development. Biofouling is the limiting factor in any ocean monitoring which requires materials to be placed underwater.
An Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries management, based on the improvement capacities of existing sensors, will contribute to address the lack of data available to precisely determine the spatial distribution of catch and fishing effort, and to make an environmental characterization of the fishing area.
As sound can travel long distances underwater, humans and marine animals have used it as a means to accomplish all sorts of tasks, from scanning the environment to communication at short and long ranges, from centimeters to hundreds of kilometers. Through the development of passive acoustics technologies, sound can also be used to observe the ocean, from marine life, to seismics and human activities.