B&G, the global leader in the design and manufacture of sailing electronics, is pleased to announce its collaboration with the Arctic Whale Project. The aim of this project is to research and broadcast the effects of marine plastic pollution on the ocean and the threat they represent for marine mammals such as orcas and dolphins. Using the sailboat Barba equipped with B&G on board, the Arctic Whale Project will conduct an Arctic roundtrip from during the summer of 2019. Whales and other sea mammals will play the lead roles as messengers from the ocean.
The Arctic Whale team will utilise innovative research methods that are easy to visualise and document. Amongst other things, the team will use drones to capture whale breath samples and take tissue samples from blue whales to check if they contain nanoplastics. More traditional research methods such as micro plastic trawling and mapping of macro pollutants will also be used, as well as conducting hydrophone recordings to better understand the biology of the species. The research will be done in cooperation with the University of Iceland and the University of Oslo.
The Barba sailboat is fully equipped with B&G, to help it navigate the treacherous waters of the Arctic Ocean. “Our goal is to provide a platform for scientists and storytellers, to help highlight the challenge of plastic pollution facing our oceans. The journey will be greatly aided by the support of B&G, as it allows for better operations in the field” said co-founder of Arctic Whale and captain onboard the Barba vessel, marine biologist Andreas B. Heide. The partnership between the sailboat Barba and B&G started in 2015 when B&G supported a previous expedition to the Norwegian Arctic looking to document orcas. “The B&G equipment never lets us down” said Andreas B. Heide.
For this expedition, B&G has provided the expected software updates and product replacements, along with several environmental sensors. The data captured by these sensors will be uploaded in real time to the cloud via satellite thanks to a tracker, to further enrich the information available for scientific research.
The equipment on board:
- Zeus3 chartplotters
- H5000 autopilot
- Broadband 4GTM Radar
- ForwardScan Transducer and SonarHub
- Wind Sensor
- Triton2 display
- Triton2 speed, depth, temperature and barometric sensors
- C-MAP charts
Sandra Ness, co-founder and head of Arctic Whale’s onshore operations, summarizes the goal of the project, “we want to bring the ocean plastic problem to the people – and make the research and documentation easily available to all scientists around the world that are interested in tackling this huge problem. Our dedicated and respected team of photographers and videographers will help us achieve this.” B&G is happy to collaborate to tackle such an important challenge of our time.