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Strong currents shaping the seafloor of Spitsbergenbanken


Cruise diary: When we arrived at Spitsbergenbanken a few days ago, we were met by strong currents. On the seafloor, the currents shape sediments into different types of bedforms, with the most common being ripples, which are centimetres to decimetres high, but also larger bedforms such as sandwaves, or sandbanks which can be more than 10 m high.

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Spitsbergenbanken from the deep south to the shallow north


Cruise diary: On the last Mareano cruise of the year to Spitsebergenbanken, we had strong winds and 4-5 m high waves south of Hopen. With the video rig parked on the seafloor at 150 m depth, we could observe how suspended sediments and animals living on the seafloor drifted back and forth in the same wave motion as the research vessel G.O. Sars.

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Ice age remnants on Spitsbergenbanken


Cruise diary: MAREANO continues its mapping of Spitsbergenbanken and takes a closer look on some of the landforms made when the bank was covered by a thick glacier.

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MAREANO Annual Report 2020


This report gives an overview of conducted mapping surveys and programme results/deliverables of the MAREANO programme in 2020. A summary in English is included, the rest of the report is in Norwegian.

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Scientists discover a missing shipwreck from 1913


Researchers on a MAREANO-cruise found a wreck off Bodø that they assume must be DS Malmberget. After 108 years, we may be close to solving the mystery of this ship, which disappeared in a storm with 43 people on board.

The vessel MPV Pohjanmeri in an Arctic environment. Photo: Arctia Meritaito Ltd.

Bathymetric Mapping in 2021


Arctia Meritaito Oy is going to carry out bathymetric mapping in three smaller transects in the Barents Sea this year. The vessel MPV “Pohjanmeri” starts the expedition June 15th.

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Current events at Aktivneset


Cruise diary: After 16 hours transit from Garsholbanken, we arrived at a new sampling area, west of Aktivneset. This place is special as it is located at the outer part of the Norwegian Channel, a channel that starts south of Oslo and curves around Norway, before reaching Aktivneset.

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New Tender for Bathymetric Mapping in 2021


The MAREANO programme will continue the bathymetric mapping in the Barents Sea this year, although only three smaller transects. A new tender competition for bathymetric mapping was published 8 March 2021.

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The MAREANO survey continues to the Sklinna Bank off mid-Norway


Cruise diary: The ongoing MAREANO survey has now moved southwards from the Træna Bank to the Sklinna Bank on the mid-Norwegian shelf. The seafloor terrain here varies more than farther north, and we have found hitherto unregistered cold-water coral reefs.

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Horseshoe and cold-water coral reefs


Cruise diary: In the framework of this year´s seabed mapping on the Norwegian continental shelf, R/V "G.O. Sars" arrived on Trænabanken last week.

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Seabed mapping in the Norwegian Arctic


Thursday afternoon, on the 10th of October, RV G.O. Sars left Tromsø harbour, heading for Kvitøyrenna, a bathymetric trough located between the islands Storøya and Kvitøya within the eastern part of the Svalbard archipelago. It is a long way from Tromsø to Kvitøya, and the transit was planned to take two and a half day. However, the trip took even longer when a northerly wind picked up.

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Shallow, but beautiful


MAREANO is currently on cruise gathering visual and physical seabed samples from several areas around the Svalbard archipelago in the Norwegian Arctic. At the moment we are back in outer Kongsfjordrenna trough, offshore of northwest Svalbard, after a couple of days working closer to shore in Kongsfjorden due to poor weather. Here we tell you a little bit about what we have seen here.

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New general biotope map for the Barents Sea


Mareano has now published an updated general biotope map for the Barents Sea. This map more than doubles the area for which biotopes distribution has been predicted in this area, and provides the first indication from Mareano results of distinctive habitats occurring in Arctic waters and north of the Polar Front.


MAREANO side event at Our Ocean 2019 Thursday 24 October 7.30-8.30 AM


The Our Ocean 2019 conference is being held in Oslo 23-24 October 2019. The conference brings together leaders from governments, businesses, civil society and research institutions to share their experience, identify solutions and commit to action for a clean, healthy and productive ocean. Several side events are open to the public, including our event named “MAREANO – A Unique seabed mapping programme”.

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MAREANO cruise summary: To Bjørnøya, beyond, and beneath!


Saturday 6th April, a crisp, bright morning in Tromsø and 15 scientists and engineers from the Institute of Marine Research (IMR) and the Geological Survey of Norway (NGU) join the crew onboard G.O. Sars and set sail for Bjørnøya (Bear Island), where we will survey an area of around 4 500 km2 extending as far as 75°N in the western Barents Sea and Norwegian Sea.


New Tender for Bathymetric Mapping in 2018


The MAREANO programme will continue the bathymetric mapping in Svalbard, the Barents Sea and the Norwegian Sea in 2018. A new tender competition for bathymetric mapping was published 16 December 2017.

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Testing Autonomous Mapping


New sensor platforms, such as autonomous vehicles and drones, open up new possibilities for mapping the terrain, sediments and habitats in shallow waters and the foreshore. In June MAREANO teamed up with NTNU-AMOS to test out unmanned and autonomous platforms for interdisciplinary mapping. 

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New Nautical Chart on Svalbard


A new chart covering waters north of Nordaustlandet, has been published. This main chart is named “no. 541 Nordporten–Sjuøyane”. MAREANO and the Norwegian Mapping Authority Hydrograophic Service surveyed the fairway to Rijpfjorden in 2016.

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In a Sea of Stars


Mud Stars are important as they burrow down into the mud, helping to oxygenate the sediment and stimulating microbial growth, which contributes to nutrient cycling and release. They also feed on the organic matter present within the mud, hence the name Mud Star.

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MAREANO Live at the UN


This Norwegian seabed-mapping program is a provider of knowledge for blue growth. Watch the live stream when MAREANO presents itself at the UN 28 March.

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Rich Formations on the Seabed of Spitsbergenbanken


Now we are able to reveal how the landscape curves itself on the bottom of Spitsbergenbanken on Svalbard. In 2016, the Finnish firm Meritaito has been conducting bathymetric mapping on Spitsbergenbanken and in the Barents Sea, organized by the MAREANO programme.


The Fairway to the Rijpfjord Surveyed


– MAREANO has planned to survey the Rijpfjord in Svalbard in 2017 and 2018. Therefore, the fairway into this arctic fjord was surveyed in 2016, says Hanne Hodnesdal at the Norwegian Hydrographic Service.

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Tender for Bathymetry Mapping Published


MAREANO is continuing the surveying of the Barents Sea and waters around Svalbard. A new open tender invitation for bathymetry mapping was published 14 December 2016.

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Tender for Bathymetry Mapping to be Published in December


Plans for bathymetry mapping in 2017 and beyond are made, and in early December a new tender invitation for bathymetry mapping will be published.

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MAREANO Presented to The World Bank Group


The MAREANO-programme’s work and results was presented at the World Bank Group's seminar "Knowledge for Blue Growth: Norwegian contribution to a sustainable ocean economy", in Washington D.C.


MAREANO's chemical data are available in one separate data file


All the analytical data from the MAREANO Chemistry Program for 2003-2013 are compiled into one database which can be downloaded. The data file will be updated in January each year.

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Leaders of the Mareano Programme Group and the Executive Group hands over the baton


During last week there was a change in leadership within the Programme Group (executive heading) of Mareano when Signe Nåmdal (Norwegian Environment Agency) replaced Aksel Eikemo (The Directorate of Fisheries). The group has the superior responsibility regarding implementation of the different activities in Mareano. Also the Executive Group (doing the daily operations in Mareano) did alter its leadership and here Sten-Richard Birkely took management in the group replacing Børge Holte (both from the Institute of Marine Research).

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MAREANO's 2016 field surveys in the Barents Sea and around Svalbard


MAREANO's 2016 campaign of hydrographic surveying began in February mapping the area between Bjørnøyrenna and Sørkapp, on Svalbard. Later this year bathymetric data acquisition will continue in the Barents Sea at the Norwegian side of the agreed Delimitation Line between Norway and Russia. Bathymetry data will also be acquired along the north coast of Svalbard, starting this year with surveys of the passage to Rijpfjorden. During 2016 there also will be two cruises for geological, biological and chemical sampling. The first cruise starts in June and will sample the new Norwegian area adjacent to the Norwegian/Russian Delimitation Line. The second cruise is bound for the area from Bjørnøyrenna to Kong Karls Land, to the southeast of Svalbard, and will be conducted in September – October.

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New book from MAREANO


In the occasion of MAREANOs 10th anniversary, a new book presenting the results of the mapping and surveys of the Norwegian sea floor has been released. The book, which is in English, is an expanded and updated version of the Norwegian book from 2010.