Autonomous Marine Observatories in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard

  • Haakon HopEmail author
  • Finlo Cottier
  • Jørgen Berge
Part of the Advances in Polar Ecology book series (AVPE, volume 2)


Several moored autonomous marine observatories, with a variety of sensors and scientific instruments have been installed in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard, since 2002. These provide seasonal and inter-annual data on a number of physical, chemical and biological variables, as well as biological variables that serve as important baselines for the measurement of seasonal variability and the interpretation of climate-induced changes in this fjord system. Oceanographic and ecological changes observed in Kongsfjorden are, to some extent, related to larger-scale changes in Fram Strait because of the advection of Atlantic Water into the open fjord. We here provide an account of the location of moored observatories in Kongsfjorden, with a list of parameters measured at the different moorings, and review the scientific advances that have been made through data collection from these marine observatories. Several nations collaborate on moorings in Kongsfjorden (Norway, Sweden, UK, Germany, and France), whereas others have separate moorings in the fjord (India and Italy). Some of the moorings in Kongsfjorden have become part of The Svalbard Integrated Arctic Earth Observing System (SIOS). To maximise the scientific benefits of moorings, two priorities need to involve: (i) coordination of the infrastructure and (ii) securing their long-term viability in support of Arctic marine science.


Moorings Long-term monitoring Climate change Svalbard Arctic 



We thank the mooring contacts at respective institutions for supplying updated information for Table 13.1. The moorings have been supported financially by many funding agencies and projects. The acknowledgement of funding for specific projects that have used data from the moorings are found within the cited publications. We thank Colin Griffiths (SAMS) for overseeing the Kongsfjorden Marine Observatory programme, managed from SAMS with support from the UK Natural Environment Research Council, the Research Council of Norway and the EU. Considerable in-kind support has been given over the years from UiT The Arctic University of Norway, UNIS and NPI in its operation. We finally thank Mikko Vihtakari (NPI) for assembling the map.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Norwegian Polar Institute, Fram CentreTromsøNorway
  2. 2.Department of Arctic and Marine Biology, Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and EconomicsUiT The Arctic University of NorwayTromsøNorway
  3. 3.Scottish Association for Marine Science, Scottish Oceans InstituteObanUK
  4. 4.The University Centre in SvalbardLongyearbyenNorway
  5. 5.Centre for Autonomous Marine Operations and SystemsDepartment of Biology, Norwegian University of Science and TechnologyTrondheimNorway

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