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YSI electronics chest

Xylem, Verizon Team Up on Oyster Restoration

YSI electronics chestXylem’s YSI Integrated Systems and Services (ISS), Verizon and the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School have teamed up on a long-term oyster restoration project called the Billion Oyster Project.

The BOP aims to restore 1 billion live oysters into New York Harbor over the next 20 years. Among the project’s anticipated environmental benefits: the improvement of water quality as a result of the presence of the oysters.

The project begins at the oyster hatchery at the Harbor School on Governor’s Island, a public high school with a focus on marine science and marine technology. The Verizon Innovation Program funded an effort at the Harbor School that enables the high school students to track the project in real-time, with underwater video and data collection delivered over Verizon’s 4GLTE network.

ISS designed a completely submersible, hurricane-resistant electronics chest for the project. The technology integrates the EXO Water Quality Sonde (which monitors eight different parameters) and the SonTek Argonaut XR (which provides water velocity and temperature data). Both instruments are hard-wired to the electronics chest, as is the video feed cable. Inside the chest is the datalogger and cellular modem for real-time transmission of the data and the live video feed from the harbor floor.

The high school students involved in the project can access the data and the video feed at any time through the school website. The data will also be made available to the public.

In other declining fisheries news, toxic chemicals associated with the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill may be linked to continued problems growing oysters in Louisiana waters, according to an environmental assessment released last week.

Additionally, the 2014 shrimp season in the Gulf of Maine has been cancelled — the first such shutdown since 1978, The New York Times reports. Regulators cited historic low stocks of shrimp due to overfishing and warming waters before voting to cancel the season.

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