High frequency monitoring of phytoplankton thanks to a flow cytometer installed on the EOL Buoy

dimanche 12 février 2012
par   G. Grégori

The preliminary phase consisting in installing the Cytosub (Cytobuoy b.v., Netherlands) of the PRECYM platform (MIO, Marseille) on the EOL buoy of the Oceanographic Observatory of Villefranche (OOV, Villefranche-sur-mer) has been successful.

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Bouée EOL

In order to get a good idea of the whole system, please visit this webpage to see a short movie : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01KGH_hO-K8.

Now the cytometer, coupled to a CTD (kindly provided by the Service d’Observation du MIO, for measurement of temperature, salinity, and pressure), is automatically sampling the sea water at 1m depth, according to a schedule chosen by the operator.

The system is fully autonomous, but communication with a wireless system (WIFI) makes possible to start/stop the instrument, modify the set-up of the flow cytometer, and transfer data to any computer plugged on Internet. Thanks to this technology, the different partners involved in this collaborative project can monitor and communicate in real time with the cytometer.

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The partners

The data collected in situ, at high frequency, and at the single cell level should provide new insights on the functioning of the phytoplankton and the settlement of the Spring bloom, with a particular focus on the impact of sudden events (strong wind, heavy rain, dust) out of reach of more conventional sampling methods (manually from a ship).


Involved scientists : Melilotus Thyssen and Felipe Artigas (LOG), Jean-Michel Grisoni (OOV-CNRS), Laure Mousseau (LOV), Maria Luiza Pedrotti (LOV), Michel Denis and Gérald Grégori (MIO-PRECYM),

Credits photos and video : G. Grégori & M. Thyssen.


Cytomètre sur bouée EOL