Sergi Pons presents his thesis on “do-it-yourself instruments and data processing methods for developing marine citizen observatories“.
The motivation behind the thesis is related to the need to optimize the monitoring of oceanographic processes. In oceanography, data is not being sampled with the appropriate frequency and spatial resolution. If aliasing occurs, the signal reconstructed from samples is different from the original continuous signal. The traditional method of turning data into knowledge relies on manual analysis and interpretation. For long-term monitoring applications, this form of proceeding is inefficient and expensive. Present technology cannot offer anti-aliasing filters at the desired cut-off frequencies.
Citizen science is a tool that has been underutilized. We believe that open-source software coupled with low-cost do-it-yourself hardware can help to close the gap between science and citizens in the oceanographic field.
Objectives of the thesis:
- Demonstrate how citizen science tools (based on open source software and low-cost hardware) are effectively applied to solve
the requirements for monitoring oceanographic processes.
- Develop a pioneering work in citizen-science techniques, building a foundation for future more sophisticated techniques.
- Demonstrate how open-source software and low-cost hardware are effectively applied to oceanographic research and show how this relates to citizen science.
Conclusions of the thesis:
Open-source software and low-cost do-it-yourself hardware:
– offer better results than previous methodologies;
– use less resources (human and technical) than previous methodologies;
– allow to apply techniques already used in other fields to oceanography;
– open the doors to implicate citizens in gathering new data and improve existing techniques.