UNITED activities back on track: German pilot to investigate the site for the planned pre-tests.

Harbors were reopened after the Covid19 lockdown, and project partners involved in the German pilot did not wait a minute to start with pre-operational activities in the near-shore testing site. The KMF Team installed the mussel longlines for pre-testing collectors, as well as measurement devices and sensors. “Although Covid19-related restrictions have forced us to think of alternative measures in our farm, we finally manage to implement all longlines in there”, Dr. Tim Staufenberger (owner of KMF) gladly reports.

The full German pilot team – consisting of FUE, KMF and 4HJena – could then get together at the Marina in Kiel Holtenau to investigate the site for the planned pre-tests. The marine engineering company 4HJena will run several tests at the harbor, to assure the functioning of their newly constructed lander (including sensors). “A foot on the ground is always better” says Dr. Jack Triest, who is in charge of the remote measuring of environmental influences and (a-)biotic factors. It is in fact of outmost importance for 4HJena to sort out all potential problems and bugs that may be found during test runs, and optimize data communication before going offshore next year.

Pilot lead Eva Strothotte is happy “that things are now moving forward and the UNITED project can proceed as planned. It is important that we make the most of our pre-operational phase, and test our equipment before we assemble everything during the operational phase at FINO3 in the North Sea – 80 km off-shore – in 2021.

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Pictures: Ewa Strothotte, German Pilot