Status of the European fleet as a contribution to the Argo International Program.
Float procurement will be done partly at the national level and partly by the Central RI, in all cases on the basis of open and competitive tenders.
Floats deployments require adequate logistical support and easy access to information on research cruises for deployment opportunities. The Euro-Argo RI with distributed RIs, as a partnership between the Central-RI and its european partners, will coordinate operations at sea and associated logistics. The succession of operations is as follows :
- Preparing the floats : The preparation involves reception and checking proper functioning of all components, calibration of the sensors, programming of the mission parameters, transmission schedule, conditioning for transport and shipping, stock management.
- Operations at sea : The actual planning and conduct of the fiel operations over the global ocean is a complex task. A concerted internationl plan must be agreed upon. Floats can be deployed during research cruises of from other ships of opportunity, which must be identified. This requires regular contacts with ship operators, operations planning and training of personnel in charge of field work. Floats deployments also have to be notified through the argo Information Center (AIC) up to six months prior to deployments to meet the requirements of IOC Resolution XX-6. Deployment from research vessels requires advance knowledge of cruise plans from all suitable ships ; such information will be collected by the Euro-Argo RI.