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The HNS-MS project: towards a decision support tool for accidents at sea involving Harmful Noxious Substances

Today, we're releasing the web site for the HNS-MS project.

This project is funded by the European Commission's Humanitarian aid and Civil Protection department (DG-ECHO) and is coordinated by RBINS / OD Nature.

The aim is to develop a decision-support tool that national maritime authorities and coastguard stations will activate in order to forecast the drift, fate and behaviour of acute marine pollution by Harmful Noxious Substances (HNS) accidentally released in the marine system. At the end of the project (December 2016) we will deliver a demonstrator web-based decision-support tool that will help coastguard stations to evaluate the risks for maritime safety, civil protection and marine environment in case of an acute pollution of the sea.

SWAP is responsible for integrating the contributions of the consortium partners into a usable, intuitive application. Users will be able to make complex 3D simulations and to access and use a database containing the physico-chemical parameters needed to compute the behaviour in the marine environment of 100+ relevant HNS and to visualise simulations results. Access to sensitivity maps (geographical layers) will also be provided.


HNS-MS: Improving Member States preparedness to face an HNS pollution of the Marine System

We aim to develop a decision-support tool forecasting the drift, fate and behavior of acute marine pollution by Harmful Noxious Substances (HNS) accidentally released in the marine system.

oceanography mathematical modelling environmental emergency response project web site public View site »

The AquaRES web site has been released

AquaRES (Aquatic Species Register Exchange and Services) is a Belspo funded BRAIN project in which VLIZ, ULB and RBINS collaborate to set up the exchange between the species registers WoRMS, RAMS and FADA. This project provides an opportunity to improve the data entry tools for taxonomic experts, in order to facilitate the processing of their data and the entry of species distribution information.


AquaRES: Aquatic Species Register Exchange and Services

Biology > Taxonomy Data project web site public View site »

A new version of our ODAS web application is available

We're announcing today that our ODAS web application is available after a complete redesign.

As we've mentioned in a previous blog post, the communication means between the RV Belgica and our servers in Ostend and Brussels have been recently upgraded and we're now getting updates from the ship in near-real time.

So, what's ODAS exactly?

ODAS stands for Onboard Data Aquisition System. The system is composed of an array of sensors onboard of the RV Belgica which monitor constantly several parameters in the water and the weather. These measurements are collected and transmitted to the OD Nature Measurement Services Ostend (MSO) via a satellite link about every 10 minutes, where they are saved in the ODAS database combined with information about the position, heading and speed of the RV Belgica at the time of each measurement.

A visualisation tool existed on the web site for many years. It served us well and was upgraded a few times during its lifetime. But with better and more frequent communication from the ship came the time to overhaul the system in terms of coding, interface, data access and storage.

The most significant changes are in the way data is received and stored, and in how the web application is constructed. In terms of user interface, ship tracks data are presented per campaign. There is a fully searchable index, so looking for a specific campaign ID, date, harbour or theme is very easy and fast. On the map, information about point measurements are available at an interval of an hour approximatively. A table displays available measurements every 10 minutes, despite the possible availability of higher resolution data stored in our databases.

Please note that the ODAS data has not been subjected to human quality control and is for informational purposes only.

RV Belgica ODAS UI
RV Belgica web application

Extra features

The RV Belgica home page now displays information about the ship's last received position together with a few of the parameters measured by ODAS (e.g.ship heading and speed, wind speed and direction, water depth and temperature). A webcam has been installed on the bridge and transmits a new image every two minutes.

The RV Belgica web site is available in English, français and Nederlands

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Recent highlights

30 April 2015

The HNS-MS project web site has just been released.

Check it out »

17 March 2015

A new version of our ODAS application is available.

See what's new »

06 February 2015

The FLOAT User Interface has been migrated.

Read more »

25 January 2015

The renewed RV Belgica web site is available; research cruises and programmes for 2015 are online.

Check it out »

20 October 2014

The REMSEM team and its project web sites are now on

See what's available »

03 October 2014

Learn about COHERENS, our modelling system for shallow waters.

View the COHERENS web site »

17 September 2014

The IBISCA (Investigating the Biodiversity of Soil and Canopy Arthropods) project web site is ready.

Check it out »

9 September 2014

We've migrated a first batch of web sites to our OD Nature framework.

See what sites have been migrated »

4 September 2014

The TILES web site opens. The TILES project is funded under the BRAIN-be call ‘Sustainable management of mineral and geological resources’ and coordinated by OD Nature.

Visit the TILES web site »

1 September 2014

We're busy making our production server available. The first web sites will soon become available.