Lizard Island

A Wireless Sensor Network was deployed at Lizard Island in the northern Great Barrier Reef in late 2010. The design looks to understand the flushing of the lagoon and the intrusion of ocean water into the lagoon. One of the Relay Poles is located behind a small islet (Seabird Islet) on the eastern side of the lagoon, this protects it from ocean conditions and allows sensors to be run out to the ocean side of the reef giving information about the waters directly outside the lagoon.

The map below shows the type and location of the equipment. The star is the base station located at the Australian Museum Research Station, diamonds are network relay poles that create the on-reef network and the circles are Sensor-Floats. A weather station is located on RP2 just behind the seabird islet, this also has an above water camera, images from this can be viewed here. RP2 also has a string of sensors that go out through the surf zone some 130 metres to measure deeper ocean influenced temperature and salinity.

The floats SF2 and SF3 measure in-lagoon waters, SF1 measures water entering the lagoon across the southern reef flat while SF4 measures water off the research station much of which is either exiting the lagoon or is ocean water wrapped around Palfrey Island.

Note that the weather station on RP2 is impacted by Mt. Cook behind it and so may read lower wind speeds than readings from other Bureau of Meteorology stations, due to the topography of the island. The RP1 site is purely a network transmission pole used to get signal around the topography of the island and so carries no sensors. The link between the base station, RP1 and RP2 is via fast microwave allowing images from a camera mounted on RP2 to be transmitted back to the base.

Sensors Deployed at Lizard Island

The following sensors have been deployed at Lizard Island, note that Tropical Cyclone Ita (April 2014) and Tropical Cyclone Nathan (April 2015) caused damage to the system with resulting data outages.

To download a pdf copy of the table below for Lizard Island click here.


Platform Type Sensor Type Sensor Model Depth (LAT)
RP1 Pole None    
RP2 Pole Temperature MEA Thermistor 1.0m
    Temperature Seabird SBE39 5.0m + 10.1m +
    Depth Seabird SBE39 5.0m + 10.1m +
    Salinity Seabird SBE37 20.6m
    Weather station Vaisala WXT520 6m height
    Above water Light (PAR) LiCor LI-192 6m height
    Images Axis camera 6m height
SF1 Buoy Temperature MEA Thermistor Surface
    Temperature Seabird SBE37 5.5m
    Depth Seabird SBE37 5.5m
    Salinity Seabird SBE37 5.5m
SF2 Buoy Temperature MEA Thermistor Surface
    Temperature Seabird SBE37 10.9m
    Depth Seabird SBE37 10.9m
    Salinity Seabird SBE37 10.9m
SF3 Buoy Temperature MEA Thermistor Surface
    Temperature Seabird SBE39 8.8m
    Depth Seabird SBE39 8.8m
SF4 Buoy Temperature MEA Thermistor Surface
    Temperature Seabird SBE37 11.5m
    Depth Seabird SBE37 11.5m
    Salinity Seabird SBE37 11.5m