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Alcatel Cables Undersea Observatory

Alcatel and MariPro selected by the Monterey Accelerated Research System (MARS) to help build a cabled undersea observatory test bed

January 31, 2003

2 Min Read

PARIS -- Alcatel, (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA), the world leader in optical networking, and MariPro, the world leader in cabled undersea sensor systems, have been selected as industry partners by the Monterey Accelerated Research System (MARS) consortium to build a science cabled observatory test bed in Monterey Bay, California, US. Alcatel and MariPro will design a specific submarine system to allow for delivery of real-time flows of data and images from the seabed to researchers via the Internet, as well as for interactive control over scientific experiments involving robotic vehicles, video and a myriad of sensors on site. The system is expected to be operational mid 2005. The MARS program, which will be managed by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI), was conceived and is being developed by a consortium consisting of the University of Washington, IPOST - Canada, University of Victoria, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Under the terms of the program, MariPro will manage the industry team efforts. For the MARS program, Alcatel and MariPro will design and build mechanical subsystems, as well as test, integrate and install the communications and power subsystems developed by Woods Hole and JLP/University of Washington. The subsystems will be integrated into packages or nodes that can be linked to arrays of science sensors, allowing for design verification prior to proceeding with any future projects. MARS aims to create an undersea cabled science observatory that, for the first time, will enable researchers and shore-based learners to participate in detailed studies and experiments on a wide area of seafloor and ocean for decades rather than just hours or days. Furthermore, the designed submarine system will convey power and communications to scientific instruments: this interactive type of observatory will also make it possible for students and researchers to observe in real-time seabed experiments from their classrooms and laboratories. "We were impressed by the synergy between Alcatel and MariPro's teams and by their willingness to be flexible and responsive to our inputs for this complex project. Alcatel brings extensive commercial telecom system expertise and MariPro a long history of submarine sensor systems," said Marcia McNutt Principal Investigator for the MARS program. "The MARS project needs state-of-the-art design and products, as well as totally dedicated solutions. Alcatel and MariPro is a well qualified team to achieve this task." Alcatel SA

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