Project in brief

Exercise 'Cathach' is a marine incident response demonstration involving an oil/chemical spill situation in an estuary environment. The exercise is organised by the Mobile and Marine Robotics Research Centre at the University of Limerick, Shannon Foynes Port Company and Clare County Council; it will be held in the Shannon Estuary, Ireland, from 17th to 18th April 2013 and will be executed as a real incident response following state protocols. 

The exercise itself is a joint collaboration between an Interreg IVB project, NETMAR, and the Shannon Estuary Anti-Polution Team (Sea-PT) with the support from additional state agencies such as the Irish Coast Guard and Defence Forces. We have a main website for the NETMAR project here.

In addition to shoreline activites, the response will implement state-of-the-art aerial (in collaboration with the Irish Aviation Authority) and underwater vehicles (UAV's, ROV's and AUV's) for remote sensing operations. These vehicles developed in-house by industry (Technalia) and researh institutions (FEUP, UL, NUIM) will be used in order to assess and relay in-situ sensor data, ultimately allowing for fast effective deployment of resources essential to be able to contain and control spills in a safe manner. 

A whole host of other agencies are also involved in both technical and logistical roles. These include SmartBay, Marine Institute, Civil Defence, Naval Service Reserve, Envirnmental Management Services, Commnet, Basline Surveys Ltd and a host of others.  

For a detailed description of the scenario see here

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