EU awards €8.4m to ODYSSEA

The international ODYSSEA project has been awarded Horizon 2020 funding for developing and deploying integrated observatory systems across the Mediterranean Sea.

The €8.4m has been awarded to develop an interoperable, cost-effective platform which integrates networks of coastal observation, new and existing sensors, oceanographic models and forecasting systems across the Mediterranean basin.

ODYSSEA is comprised of 28 partner organisations from 14 EU and non-EU countries across the Mediterranean. The consortium includes research institutes, universities, policy makers, non-governmental organisations, and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The project will collect information from databases maintained by agencies, public authorities, research institutions and universities.

The four-and-a-half-year project aims to make Mediterranean marine data easily accessible, as well as tailoring data to the requirement of maritime sector end-users, including wind farms, mariculture, ocean energy, oil and gas extraction, and others.

The ODYSSEA platform, led by the Democritus University of Thrace (DUTH), Greece, will provide on-demand information services, including forecasts, through a public portal.

To maximise the use of information services, the project will include capacity building, and creating business and research opportunities across the basin.

Professor Georgios Sylaios from DUTH, and co-ordinator of ODYSSEA, said: “We have identified a real need to harmonise existing Earth observing systems operating around the Mediterranean and upgrading their operational oceanographic capacities.

“The project will support EU policy implementation, improving interoperability in monitoring and fostering blue growth jobs creation.”