Why is ocean research important?

To protect and use the ocean and its resources, it is vital to know how it works! Processes in the ocean are extremely complex and interconnected. What happens if one or more parts of the whole are changed by human impact, e.g. via fisheries or climate change? Our goal is to investigate and understand important puzzle pieces of the ocean.

Plankton are extremely diverse and fullfill many different and important functions. We investigate these organisms with an underwater camera, which delivers a large number of images of plankton organisms.

How do we do our research?

The Underwater Vision Profiler (UVP) is a pressure-proof underwater camera, which takes images of Plankton and particles down to 6000 m depth. The UVP was deployed on several research cruises and is almost constantly in use somewhere in the ocean. In order to obtain a UVP profile, the camera is lowered from the surface to the desired depth. During this ’downcast’, it records between 6 and 11 images per second.

In our current project, we investigate the distribution and role of Rhizaria in upwelling areas.

All Rhizaria have been selected and sorted from our image data by an automatic image recognition algorithm. This classification, however, still has to be checked and possibly corrected and this is where you can participate!

We have more than 50 000 images that have to be sorted. Join the game and make an important contribution to ocean research!

Why Rhizaria?

Why upwelling areas?

Role of Rhizaria in biogeochemical cycles

Role of Rhizaria in the global ocean

Different Rhizaria categories