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e Umbellula

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”.

Alle stasjoner Mareano 2010106 engelsk

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.

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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. 


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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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.

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Mission Accomplished — yet another successful cruise!


Cruise diary: During the course of two weeks the biology and geology was mapped at 73 locations along the shelf edge west of the town Sandnessjøen at depths ranging between 220 and 760 meters. At 14 of these sites, a total of 83 bottom samples were collected using grabs, cores, sleighs, and beam trawls. At all sites the seafloor was investigated and documented using the Chimaera video rig (Chimaera is the Latin name for the rabbit fish/rat fish).

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New coral reefs discovered off Northern Norway


Cruise diary: During the past two weeks of the MAREANO expedition, several new coral reefs have been discovered. One of them is Pearl Chain Reef (Perlekjederevet) that was found west of the town Sandnessjøen, at a depth of approximately 290 meters. This is a narrow coral reef complex extending over a kilometer in length.


Looking for pollution in the Norwegian Sea


Cruise diary: The ongoing MAREANO cruise has finished surveying the shelf edge south of Skjoldryggen at the mid-Norwegian shelf, and is now concentrating on the shelf edge between Skjoldryggen and Trænadjupet. Sediment samples have been collected from ten locations, including five with multicorer.

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The deep-sea seapen Umbellula: cheek to cheek in the deep sea


Cruise diary: One of the most spectacular creatures that we occasionally encounter down in the deep, cold ocean is the deep-sea seapen Umbellula encrinus. This spectacular organism, resembling a giant plant or exploding fireworks is in actual fact a colony of giant polyps, which are collected in a crown perched atop a stem, of sorts.

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Cracks along the upper slope directly north of the Storegga Slide


Cruise diary: Between stations, the vessel G.O. Sars collects high resolution seismic data using a hull mounted acoustic source (TOPAS). In fine-grained sediments the sound may penetrate 100-150 m. The acoustic pattern gives an indication of the seafloor sediment type, but we also get information about the stratigraphy and geological development.


Large areas of carbonate crust found at pockmarked seafloor off mid Norway


Cruise diary: On a 700 m long video line on the outer shelf close to the Storegga Slide (Figure 1) numerous blocks of carbonate crust were found at a 400 m long section (Figure 2). The carbonate crust appears to correspond with areas of high backscatter.


The seacrets of the shelf edge


Cruise diary: Thanks to the good weather with almost flat sea the mapping around the shelf edge off Trøndelag and Nordland has proceeded nicely without delay. The video documentation and bottom sampling in the southern mapping area is now finished.


MAREANO’s autumn cruise 2015


During MAREANO’s last biology/geology cruise this year, we will map two areas around the shelf edge off the counties of Trøndelag and Nordland. These areas are located north and south of the ridge called Skjoldryggen.


High production and intensive fisheries


Cruise diary: Middle reaches of the Barents Sea are characterized by large mudflats which provide habitat for many exciting benthic species, and also provide clear evidence of destructive fishing activity. We have frequently observed cod, haddock, and some dead fish specimens. In some areas the seabed has been substantially altered by trawling activity.

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MAREANO Spring Cruise — Mission Accomplished!


Cruise diary: Yet another successful MAREANO cruise has been completed. After 14 days at sea, and a 40-hour return voyage from key regions of the Barents Sea, R/V G.O. Sars docked in Tromsø on Thursday morning (06/18/2015).


The Barents Sea — high production and a rich species community


Cruise diary: Despite large amounts of “marine snow” and a gel-like layer covering bottom sediments, the seafloor in central parts of the Barents Sea is teeming with life.  Here MAREANO is currently taking samples, and conducting video transects. Regardless of one day with stormy weather conditions, we remain on schedule.

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The Helmet – a tale of a salt pillar


MAREANOs first video station of 2015 documented a conspicuous seabed structure, about 300 km north-northeast of mainland Norway, known as The Helmet. The circular structure which looks like the top of a helmet sticking out of the seabed is 30 m high and has a diameter of 800 m.

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Deep sea snow storm in the Barents Sea


Cruise diary: Now we are well underway with visual inspection and sampling of the seabed at this year’s first MAREANO cruise.