TEC4SEA - A modular platform for research, test and validation of technologies supporting a sustainable blue economy

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Alfredo Martins
Aníbal Matos
José Miguel Almeida
Nuno Cruz
José Carlos Alves
Henrique Salgado
Luís Manuel Pessoa
Pedro Jorge
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This paper presents the TEC4SEA research infrastructure created in Portugal to support research, development, and validation of marine technologies. It is a multidisciplinary open platform, capable of supporting research, development, and test of marine robotics, telecommunications, and sensing technologies for monitoring and operating in the ocean environment. Due to the installed research facilities and its privileged geographic location, it allows fast access to deep sea, and can support multidisciplinary research, enabling full validation and evaluation of technological solutions designed for the ocean environment. It is a vertically integrated infrastructure, in the sense that it possesses a set of skills and resources which range from pure conceptual research to field deployment missions, with strong industrial and logistic capacities in the middle tier of prototype production. TEC4SEA is open to the entire scientific and enterprise community, with a free access policy for researchers affiliated with the research units that ensure its maintenance and sustainability. The paper describes the infrastructure in detail, and discusses associated research programs, providing a strategic vision for deep sea research initiatives, within the context of both the Portuguese National Ocean Strategy and European Strategy frameworks. © 2014 IEEE.