Ocean Sensors specializes in the development of innovative ocean measurement instrumentation and systems. Our products are used in the academic oceanographic, environmental monitoring and Naval Research and development markets. Founded in 1986, we have developed and supplied instruments for use in ocean profiling, moored and shipboard data logging applications.
The measurements of ocean waves, tides, temperature and salinity are routinely completed using our instruments. Our products frequently integrate with dissolved oxygen, pH, fluorometer, transmissometer, and tilt sensors. Ocean Sensors interacts with foreign and domestic academic institutions including Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, University of Washington, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (S.I.O.) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Our research projects continually expand the existing products into broader market bases. Ocean Sensors products are used extensively in environmental monitoring from remotely operated vehicles, submarines, autonomous and towed vehicles.
In 1989, as a proof of concept project, we were funded for, and successfully completed the design and field testing of an autonomous instrument with satellite data telemetry. In 1993 Ocean Sensors introduced a thermosalinograph with integrated Global Positioning System (GPS). In the same year we introduced the Autonomous Profiling Vehicle (APV) which repeatedly profiled to over 1000 meters depth without any surface connection. The data was transmitted back to land via satellite. In 1999 we introduced a new line of compact high speed, low power data loggers. The instruments provide up to 70 gigabytes of data storage. Our conductivity and temperature (CT) sensor measures both electrical conductivity and temperature. It responds rapidly in time, and averages over small spatial zones. It is physically small and retains stable calibration. Another development is an automatic computer controlled calibration facility, which is regularly compared against the S.I.O. calibration facility. This innovation reduces human related calibration errors and improves productivity.
Ocean Sensors emphasizes low power (as little as 1 milliwatt) designs for use in long term deployments where power consumption is a critical factor. Ocean Sensors has developed several microprocessor?based systems (embedded systems). The operating systems allow the instruments to be programmed for data acquisition (up to 64 additional channels). The systems are capable of concurrently acquiring data and communicating with the user if needed. Logical decisions can be made, to command other devices such as radio, GPS, pump, or motor. Hundreds of our systems have been in use for many years and have successfully completed individual data acquisition tasks at sea for over a year.
FACILITIES AND EQUIPMENT.
Ocean Sensors has a computer network for maintenance and creation of common databases, manufacturing and calibration information. All documents covering parts ordering, manufacturing and assembly are electronically generated and maintained. A quality assurance system has been implemented. Scientific, technical and engineering publications are available on site. Dedicated computer systems for Computer Aided Design (CAD) of mechanical parts, printed circuit boards, schematic generation and in house software / firmware development are on site. Ocean Sensors has long standing professional relationships with many local suppliers of printed circuit board manufacturing, machining, hard-anodizing of mechanical parts and other oceanographically significant services.
Several pressure vessels are on site for pressure testing of instruments or arrays up to 0.20 meters in diameter and 1.20 meters in length. Pressure equivalent to 1000 meters depth, with 0.05% accuracy, is attainable. Calibration ranges are from -2 to 40 degrees C and 0 to 70 mS/cm with accuracy of 0.005 degrees C and 0.005 mS/cm respectively. In addition to these on site facilities, Ocean Sensors validates its calibration laboratory accuracy with those of S.I.O. A full suite of test electronics (precision voltmeters, power supplies, frequency counter, oscilloscopes, salinometer etc.) is also available for ongoing development and maintenance of existing hardware. A microprocessor-controlled furnace is used for the on site manufacturing of ceramic sensors and components. Several refrigerators, freezers, and ovens are installed to simulate the environment and complete burn-in testing. A closed loop circulating seawater system has been constructed to simulate ocean measurements. A full suite of electronics manufacturing tools for use in surface mount assembly, including soldering stations, microscopes, and other specialized electronic assembly tools are available.