A strategic retreat


On Nov 22nd and 23rd 2019, a strategic retreat was organized by João Sousa and Kanna Rajan at Casa de Mateus, Vila Real. The objective of the meeting was to gather prominent International researchers with a focus on ocean science, primarily from Portugal as also from Spain and Norway to chart out important problems that should require the use of autonomous robotic platforms to provide novel observational capabilities driven by LSTS’ technology. The small and focused gathering drew attention on areas of interest primarily on sampling Portuguese waters off of the mainland while discussing key issues related to control, bathymetric exploration, ecological transport and exploration of vertical layers in the water column. Day 1 also included a public seminar on autonomous systems to the local population of Vila Real including researchers from UTAD (Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro). Day 2 summarized the discussions and called for a focused multi-platform exploration of the Gorringe Ridge off of the mainland of Portugal as a novel way to demonstrated new capabilities as also obtain scientific data hitherto not possible. 


The participants included Catarina Magalhães (CIIMAR, Porto), José da Silva (FCUP and CIIMAR, Porto), Paulo Relvas (CCMAR and Univ. of Algarve), Jo Eidsvik  NTNU, Trondheim), Silvia Torres (CETMAR, Vigo, Spain), Javier Gilabert (Polytecnica Cartagena, Spain), Marina Cunha (Univ. of Aveiro), João Vitorino (Instituto Hidrográfico, Lisbon) and João Sousa (FEUP, Porto),  Kanna Rajan  FEUP, Porto and NTNU, Trondheim), Eduardo Grilo (former Minister of Education) and Manuel Pinto Abreu (former Minister of State for the Sea). Additional written inputs to the retreat were provided by Ajit Subramaniam (Columbia University), Marta Chantal Ribeiro (FDUP, CIIMAR, Porto), Vanda Brotas (Univ. of Lisboa) and Lars Smedsrud (Univ. of Bergen, Norway).

by Kanna Rajan