OpenMODs 3.0

OpenMODs 3.0 (Open Access Marine Observation Devices Phase 3)

The OpenMODs – Open Access Marine Observation Devices – project has been extended for a third phase, from February 2023 to March 2024.

Why a project follow-on?

The OpenMODs 2.0 project concluded in late 2022. In that phase of the project, three platform/probe/transmission systems were completed and tested in the laboratory and in the water tank at OGS.

A portable data reception system (Gateway) was also developed, which connects to the network using a cell phone. The portable Gateway was not part of the initial plan but, as project evolved, the importance and convenience of such a system became clear.

Two complete systems and the Gateway were shipped to Helgoland and used during the NF-POGO Centre of Excellence training, during which the system underwent further laboratory and open water testing. And important factor of this testing element was that it was carried out by students who were trained, rather than the experienced developer personnelle. It helped to identify both the strengths of the system and important issues.

Follow-on work plan

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many industries in many ways, including widespread shortages of supplies and materials. Unfortunately, many OpnMODs orders were cancelled by suppliers due to supply chain disruptions and unpredictable lead times. Other supplies are experiencing delays of nearly a year. This shortage of electronic equipment available on the market presents problems for building additional TD probes in the medium term, and for repairing components that were damaged during testing at OGS and during training.

Given the strong interest shown during the NF-POGO Centre of Excellence (NF-POGO CofE) training, it is proposed to continue working on the platform (drifter mode) with the goal of having a system to deploy during the 2023 training. There are also plans to create a completely disassembled drifter platform for demonstration purposes, and a 1:10 scale drifter, which can be used in an aquarium to demonstrate the effectiveness of the instrument in following the currents.

Some of the complex system components are currently made on the lathe by specialized personnel. In order to improve accessibility, OpenMODs will take advantage of 3D printing technology and create a three-dimensional file of these components, which can be created locally by the end-user.

A new OpenMODs training module will be conducted in July 2023 within the structure of the NF-POGO Centre of Excellence on Helgoland, to instruct scholars on the use of the platform, and providing them with all the necessary tools and information to create their own system to be used in their home waters. The training module will address the concept of cost efficient / low cost sensors and drifter instruments. Testing of the second-version-system will be conducted in the laboratory and in open water conditions off Helgoland.

Read more about Phase 1 and 2 of OpenMods here:

Status: Complete Project

Year: 2023 - 2024

Members involved

Project Participants


  • Riccardo Gerin, OGS, Italy
  • Karen H. Wiltshire, AWI, Germany
  • Eva-Maria Brodte, AWI, Germany


    Related documents

    Scroll to Top