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The European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and water-column Observatory (EMSO) (emso.eu) aims to explore the oceans, gain a better understanding of phenomena happening within and below them, and explain the critical role that these phenomena play in the broader Earth systems.

EMSO is a consortium of partners sharing in a common strategic framework scientific facilities (data, instruments, computing and storage capacity). Formally EMSO is a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC), and was constituted on September 29, 2016 (EU Official Journal L268/59 October 1st,2016), a legal framework created by the EUropean Commission for pan-European research infrastructures.

EMSO consists of a system of regional facilities placed at key sites around Europe, from the North East to the Atlantic, through the Mediterranean, to the Black Sea. Observatories are platforms equipped with multiple sensors, placed along the water column and on the seafloor. They constantly measure different biogeochemical and physical parameters, that address natural hazards, climate change and marine ecosystems.

EMSO offers data and services to a large and diverse group of users, from scientists and industries to institutions and policymakers. It is an extraordinary infrastructure to provide relevant information for defining environmental policies based on scientific data.

EMSO achieved the Certification of Compliance to ISO 9001:2015 standard for the “Design, coordination, and development of environmental research activities on seafloor and water-column”



EMSO ERIC aims to promote excellent science through the coordination of an extensive network of infrastructure distributed from the Arctic, North Atlantic, and Mediterranean to the Black Sea, obtaining essential ocean variables  (EOVs) from the water column, to the deep seafloor and sub-seafloor at the service of high quality marine sciences, for scientists to engineers, policy makers, industry and the society in general.


The goals that EMSO intends to achieve are:

  • Provide deep sea high quality, long term time series

  • Develop technology for sensors, communications, offshore operations

  • Attract scientist, technicians, managers and industries

  • Collaborate with European and International Organization and Institution (specifically in EOOS and GEOOSS)

  • Promote innovation and knowledge-sharing

  • Conduct outreach and communication



To fulfil European societal scientific demands targeted in the EU’s H2020 Blue Growth Strategy EMSO ERIC is targeting the following areas to focus its effort in responding to the societal challenges in the framework of marine sector.



To increase the impact of the its actions, EMSO ERIC established during the past years fruitful collaborations with international organizations, pan-European Research Infrastrucres and participating in projects funded under H2020.



To increase the impact of the its actions, EMSO ERIC established during the past years fruitful collaborations with international organizations, pan-European Research Infrastrucres and participating in projects funded under H2020.




The Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (PLOCAN) is a Research Infrastructure (RI) labeled by the ICTS (Unique Scientific and Technological Infrastructure) Spanish National Roadmap, co-funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation of the Spanish government and the Canary Islands government and by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the Operational Programme of the Canary Islands.

PLOCAN is a multipurpose technical-scientific service infrastructure that provides support for research, technological development and innovation in the marine and maritime sectors, available to public and private users. PLOCAN offers both onshore and offshore experimental facilities and services and brings a broad experience in national and EU marine/maritime projects.


PLOCAN provides:

  • An Oceanic Offshore Platform that rests on the seabed, at 30m depth, and 1.5km from the coast in the NE of the island of Gran Canaria. It comprises multidisciplinary laboratories for analysing bio-geo-chemical variables in the water column, main deck area and hangar, with equipment for loading and unloading the material for experimental testing, and other general purpose facilities such as workshops, cranes and other equipment providing basic operational support.

  • A 23km2 offshore Test Site for a wide range of marine technologies, with access to a unique ecosystem, to accelerate the understanding, sustainability, and responsible use of the marine environment in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • An Observatory, which is a node of EMSO (European network of ocean-observation infrastructures) and includes the management of the ocean-vehicles base (VIMAS), the monitoring and continuous instrumentation of the test site (Coastal Observatory), the continuous deep-ocean observation for more than 20 years at the ESTOC station (Oceanic Observatory), the Macaronesian Marine-Maritime Network (R3M) with oceanographic stations and buoy systems (ODAS and SEAMON) for real-time measurements and the Data Center.

  • An Innovation Hub offering efficient and high quality R&D&I project management services, as well as other user-oriented services technological (testing marine device, data collection and analysis, environmental studies, etc.) and non-technological (fundraising, permits, logistics, etc.).


Organizing Committee

Eric Delory – PLOCAN
Paul Gaughan – Marine Institute
Marco Galeotti – EMSO ERIC
Alessandra Giuntini– INGV
Laura Beranzoli – EMSO ERIC
Mathilde Cannat – CNRS
Juanjo Dañobeitia – EMSO ERIC
Ivan Rodero – EMSO ERIC
Davide Embriaco – INGV
Sérgio Jesus – University of Algarve
Joaquin del Rio – UPC

Scientific Committee

Ana Sirovic – Dept of Marine Biology, Texas A&M University, US
Jean-Yves Royer – Université de Brest
Mike Porter – Heat, Light, and Sound Research., San Diego, US
Antoine THEBAUD – Sea Proven
Lanfranco Muzi – ONC
Antonio Fernandez – ULPGC
Danelle Cline – MBARI
John Ryan – MBARI
Silvana Neves – PLOCAN
Jose Antonio Diaz – PLOCAN
Christoph Waldmann – MARUM
Juan Carlos Herguera – CICESE
Venugopalan Pallayil – National University of Singapore
Peter Tyack – University of St Andrews
Daniel Mihai Toma – UPC, Spain
Francesco Simeone – INGV, Italy
Paulo Santos – University of Algarve, Portugal

Local Committee

Eric Delory – PLOCAN
Josefina Loustau – PLOCAN
Irene Sastre – PLOCAN
Aldina Morais – PLOCAN