Sunday, September 26, 2010

Video Plankton Recorder

Kaylyn here adding to our sparse blog! We have been very busy working out all the kinks of our equipment to make sure everything is running smoothly. One of the really cool instruments that we are deploying is our Video Plankton Recorder (VPR) manufactured by Seascan Inc. The VPR is an underwater video microscope system designed to capture the various plankton present in the water column. We deploy the VPR at different stations along our trip and send it down to about 10 meters above the seafloor and then bring it back up. The VPR takes 20 images per second, so when we download the pictures we usually have tens of thousands of images. Since many of the images don’t have an organism in them, we use software to scan the images, and it picks out pictures that may be of importance. The VPR allows us to quickly ground truth our acoustic data and to pick out areas that contain patches of krill. We then can go back to these areas and use a net system to bring krill to the surface. Below I have included a couple if pictures of the deployment of the VPR and really good VPR images that were taken over the past couple of days.

Dr. Peter Wiebe Observing the VPR Deployment
Photo Credit: Nick Woods
The VPR going into the water at Sunset
Photo credit: Nick Woods

Various Planktonic Organisms Photographed by the VPR

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