Eurofleets+ facilitates open free of charge access to a unique fleet of state-of-the-art research vessels, AUVs and ROVs from European and international partners. This is arranged by competitive transnational access (TA) calls. A Data Policy has been adopted which aims at making Eurofleets+ research data to be findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable (FAIR). Therefore, marine data management is an integral part of the Eurofleets+ approach and is implemented in synergy with SeaDataNet, a leading pan-European infrastructure for marine data management, involving NODCs as core partners.
The EVIOR platform has been set up and will be further developed and populated to provide up-to-date information about research vessels (RV), cruise programmes, completed cruises, and tracks of cruises. It includes giving e-access to underway and operational information and data from sailing research vessels, where possible. Moreover, later discovery and public access will be given to research data sets as collected and processed by research teams during the TA funded cruises.
Currently, the EVIOR platform provides access to the following databases:
- Research Vessel Cruise Programme database, containing planned cruises per research vessel and owner / operator;
- Research Vessel database, containing characteristics of each research vessel, owner / operator details and, if available, a link to the ship’s web page;
- Cruise Summary Reports (CSR) database, containing details of completed cruises and providing a first level inventory of oceanographic measurements made and samples taken during the cruises;
- Dashboard for information from sailing vessels, giving dynamic charts of sailing tracks of selected RVs with position, speed, and bearing as well as underway data from fixed instruments. Connecting more research vessels is an ongoing activity and also work is undertaken for expanding the content with cruise events information.
In a later stage EVIOR will be expanded with an extra component: the Eurofleets+ Data Sets Catalogue. This will provide an up-to-date overview of Eurofleets+ TA funded cruises and dynamic links to relevant information for each of the cruises, such as cruise plan, sailing tracks, and en-route information. A few months after completion of a cruise, it should also provide public discovery and access to the research data acquired during the TA funded cruises and processed by the cruise research teams, and thereafter submitted to EMODnet Data Ingestion for further validation and uptake by NODCs in the SeaDataNet infrastructure.
The Eurofleets+ beneficiaries manage a selection of European research vessels and equipment. However, it has been decided not to limit the scope of the EVIOR databases, but to focus on a full European coverage, encouraging also non-Eurofleets+ RV operators and researchers to contribute. This is stimulated via various existing networking relations, such as SeaDataNet, EurOcean, POGO, JCOMMOPS, ERVO (European Research Vessel Operators) and IRSO (International Research Vessel Operators Meeting).