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Customer case study: Southern Cross University

Customer Stories February 9, 2023

The Reef Restoration and Adaptation Program is the world’s largest effort to help a significant ecosystem such as the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) survive climate change. Through the Cooling and Shading sub-program, RRAP’s goal is to determine whether localised cloud brightening and/or fogging could be a temporary solution to alleviate stress on parts of the GBR during hot summer conditions, which might lead to bleaching.

Southern Cross University, is a partner in the Reef Restoration and Adaption Program (RRAP). As part of the project, they required an accurate way to record ship motion that involved measuring a number of parameters including velocity, acceleration, pitch/roll, angle rate and ship heading amongst others. They turned to Industrial Measurement Solutions (IMS) and OxTS to help them solve their challenge.

Although only a small part of a much wider mission of significant importance, it’s an honour that OxTS were able to have some involvement in this project. We sincerely hope that RRAP and all of the partner organisations involved in this cause go on to ensure the GBR is protected for future generations to enjoy.


Southern Cross University Datasheet



Southern Cross University and the RRAP team needed to correct wind speed for platform motion – which is not an easy task. It requires two high-resolution sensors to record data simultaneously; a sonic anemometer that records three-dimensional wind velocity, and an IMU that records the movement of the platform/ship.

The sonic anemometer and the IMU are two very sensitive sensors, and many of the challenges the team faced involved setting them up correctly and getting them to work seamlessly together.

Upon receipt of the IMU, the first challenge was to mount both devices below one another other in a right-handed coordinate frame where the x, y, z axes corresponded to the platform/ship frame, which was bow, portside, and up, respectively. Once aligned correctly, the second challenge involved ensuring that both devices would start recording at exactly the same time and at the same time resolution of 100 Hz.

Once data collection was complete, the team needed to combine the 100 Hz sonic anemometer and IMU output data to correct the measured wind velocity for the platform motion, before being able to calculate BVOC emission fluxes.

Download the Case Study and learn more about the role OxTS and in particular, the xNAV650, had to play in helping combat the effects of climate change on the Great Barrier Reef.



More about RRAP…

You can learn more about the Cooling and Shading Sub Program by visiting the RRAP website. Alternatively, you can watch the video here and understand the idea behind the cloud brightening project and why it matters…


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