The ElasmoPower project is looking at the potential effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF) from subsea power cables from offshore wind parks on benthic elasmobranchs (bottom dwelling sharks and rays). Part of this project are laboratory experiments in St Abbs Marine Station (Scotland) where we expose rays and sharks to an EMF gradient to determine the dose-response relationship. We wish to know at which levels what type of behaviour changes occur with these animals. We are currently planning to use video recordings in combination with the EMF signature to analyse the changes in behaviour. The experiments start mid august 2021.
We are also exploring the option of using a magnetometer in a Daily Diary Tag From Wildlife computers (USA) or the AGM sensor of Technosmart. This would allow a real time link between the level of magnetic field measured and the behavioural response. However, the tags have not been applied for this type of research and we are not sure how they will preform. In addition it needs to be made smaller and lighter by reducing the sensors amount and possibly also adding electric field measurements. We would like help integrating the different data types (video and magnetometry data, and possibly others) and make the data fit for behavioural analysis. Artificial intelligence and machine learning could possibly help in reducing the amount of data for sending and thus the required battery needed (and reduce size).
The goal of this thesis assignment is to investigate and optimize behavioral monitoring of bottom-dwelling fish with (electro)magnetic tags . [HA1] Topics included in the assignment are listed below:
- Investigate various sensor devices and select the best suiting (requirements in terms of weight and accuracy and battery-lifetime)
- Assist in data acquisition during laboratory experiments and optimize data retrieval
- Integrate data types for behavioural analysis (video, magnetometer data, depth, acceleration, direction, speed)
- Explore network options for underwater data retrieval in a lab setup (and maybe later in the field)
- Design a monitoring infrastructure that can be used in free roaming fish.
Main supervisor Jacob Kamminga (PS, UTwente)
Secondary supervisor Annemiek Hermans (Wageningen University)