10 Jan 2020 greetings for Planktonauts
We are very honored to count you amongst our first citizen explorersof the plankton planet. You have trusted us and offered your boat asan exceptional platform to explore the world’s oceans. You have alsoallowed us to travel along with you through your journeys, yourobservations, your stories, and both the technical and practicalsuggestions you have given us. But above all, you havedemonstrated that citizen-driven oceanographic surveys are bothhighly feasible and offer immense global interest, by playing yourpart in the collection of scientific quality plankton samples from all 4corners of the earth!
All of this work will be the subject of a scientific paper due to bepublished in the coming weeks. This article will undoubtedly serveas a reference for future work to be carried out by the scientificcommunity, in particular when for the production of samplingprotocols, which will be made available to future generations ofplanktonauts as well as to the general public. Along with this, asecond paper, revealing the characteristics of the first PlanktoScope(see below), is currently in the process of completion. We will ofcourse keep you informed on the publication of these two articles.
With all that in mind, you will understand that it would be out of thequestion for us to stop now! For almost 2 years, we have been tryingto structure the Plankton Planet program on an international scale toinitiate the first phase of deployment of our Oceanography 3.0approach along the world’s main navigation routes. This year, weaim to finalize the first stable version of the “Plankto-Kit”, an on-board mini-laboratory that comprises all the necessary elements, inan interconnected manner, for the integrated eco/morpho/geneticmeasurement of plankton samples. In particular, we have createdthe PlanktoScope, an automated microscope that not only makes itpossible to observe plankton at sea, but also captures flow imagesto quantify the biodiversity present at a given site. This approach,carried out on fresh plankton, is unique and complementary to thegenetic measurements performed on the same plankton, afterpreservation on board.
Today the Earth is giving us powerful signals of its changingequilibrium; it is urgent that we reconnect ourselves with thebiosphere, that we observe and measure it, and that we understandhow to reestablish our global symbiosis. Plankton Planet will play itsrole in this reconnection.
Thank you very much for your trust, your commitment and yoursupport, we will meet again soon for the continuation of this greatadventure!
The Plankton Planet team
P.S. To succeed in this new phase, it is vital for us to communicateour work, convince funders and above all show the world the resultsthat we already have. This is why we wish to ask for yourauthorization to use, reproduce and publish photographs and/orfilms that you were able to take during the pilot phase of theprogram. We are probably not aware of everything that you haveproduced, so please do not hesitate to send us your creations. Wewill endeavor to make the best use of them. And if you feel like it,we would be very happy to receive short texts (between 200 and500 words) that we could publish on the website describing yourexperiences, opinions, ideas or findings.