Hurricane Sandy carved out destruction through the human-built structures lining the East Coast. Thousands or even millions are still struggling to recover. However, similar to the bright spot we discovered in the wake of Fukushima, we’ve run across some good news off the shore of the East Coast in the wake of Sandy. A solar- and wave-powered mobile weather station rode the brunt of the storm without a problem. Furthermore, i provided valuable real-time weather data throughout the storm.
The Wave Glider named Mercury, produced by the company Liquid Robotics, survived Sandy easily, giving unique insight into the storm.
“One hundred miles due east of Toms River, New Jersey, the weather sensors on the Wave Glider gathered dramatic data from the ocean surface, reporting a plunge in barometric pressure of over 54.3 mbars to a low of 946 mbars as Sandy neared landfall,” writes Liquid Robotics.
“This is a testament to our robust and reliable technology and proof of its readiness for severe weather data collection,” stated Dr. Edward Lu, chief of innovative applications for Liquid Robotics, in a press release. “That couldn’t be more true considering one of their gliders also survived a shark attack,” TreeHugger‘s Jaymi Heimbuch notes enthusiastically. “Sharks, storms… bring it!”
And as Yahoo! News notes: ”Wave Gliders have already set world records for oceangoing travel by traveling from the West Coast to Hawaii. One pair of robots is headed for Japan with a stop at the Mariana Trench — the deepest place on Earth — while a second pair heads for Australia. The Mercury Wave Glider is part of an ocean-observing project that includes two Sonardyne undersea nodes. Such a project aims to show how both subsea and surface technology can monitor tsunamis in a cost-effective way.”
Liquid Robotics doesn’t only aim to record weather data, but it aims to contribute significantly scientific understanding of weather, changes in the ocean, and the superstorms that are predicted to become more common with climate change.
“In the midst of this epic disaster, Liquid Robotics wishes to express our sympathies for those impacted by Hurricane Sandy,” said Bill Vass, CEO of Liquid Robotics. “We are working closely with scientists around the world to use the Wave Glider technology for better hurricane, typhoon and tsunami prediction so we can help reduce the risk to human life and property.”
The wave-powered and solar-powered Wave Gliders are yet another cleantech success story we’re happy to report on here on CleanTechnica.
Image Credits: Liquid Robotics
For the fate of the sons of men and the fate of beasts is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts; for all is vanity. - Ecclesiastes 3:19