Operational Partners

Operational Partners provide additional capability required to implement the IMOS program, including access to vessels, key people, and valuable data.

Australian Antarctic Division (AAD)

The Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) is responsible for advancement of Australia’s strategic, scientific, environmental and economic interests in the Antarctic by protecting administering and researching the region.

AAD provides logistical and scientific support for IMOS activities in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica. The research and supply vessel Aurora Australis supports the IMOS Argo, Ships of Opportunity and Deepwater Mooring Facilities.  AAD is also actively involved in the Southern Ocean component of the IMOS Animal Tagging and Monitoring Facility, and in the provision of data to the Australian Ocean Data Network (AODN)

Marine National Facility

Australia’s Marine National Facility provides a blue-water research vessel (RV Investigator) to the Australian research community which is funded by the Australian Government and operated by CSIRO. The home port for the research vessel is the CSIRO Marine Laboratories in Hobart, Tasmania.


  • Flagship ‘ships of opportunity’ partner (Expendable bathythermograph, Biogeochemical, Air-sea Fluxes and Bio-acoustic)
  • Vessel time for Deepwater Moorings (Deepwater Arrays, Southern Ocean Time Series)
  • DALEC Operation (Satellite Remote Sensing Ocean Colour Calibration/Validation)
  • Ad-hoc Argo deployments

Royal Australian Navy

The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) is the naval branch of the Australian Defence Force (ADF). Following the Federation of Australia in 1901, the ships and resources of the separate colonial navies were integrated into a national force: the Commonwealth Naval Forces. Originally intended for local defence, the navy was granted the title of 'Royal Australian Navy' in 1911, and became increasingly responsible for defence of the region.

  • Argo – Co-investment in Argo floats and deployment of floats
  • Expendable bathythermograph - supply the majority of the XBT probes deployed under co-investment
  • AUV – support for MV Kimbla used for pre-trial engineering deployments in 07/08
  • AODN – personnel support

Defence Science and Technology Group (DST Group)

DST Group is the Australian government's lead agency responsible for applying science and technology to safeguard Australia and its national interests. As one of Australia’s largest employers of scientists and engineers, it delivers expert, impartial advice and innovative solutions for Defence and national security.

  • Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) – Research fellow funding
  • Acoustic Observatories – Funded for pilot deployment of three sea noise loggers in Perth Canyon, Jan-Apr 2007 and then assisted further with logger development
  • Ocean gliders (ANFOG) – Slocum glider data from the oceans around Australia have been collected by DSTO on an ongoing basis with previous deployments contributed to the IMOS Ocean Portal including: Coral Sea deployment during Exercise Talisman Sabre in July 2011, Coral Sea deployment, adjacent to Shoalwater Bay, during Exercise Talisman Saber in July - August 2013, and a Perth Canyon deployment, during a combined ocean glider deployment in conjunction with the IMOS ocean glider facility, in February - March 2014 

Geoscience Australia

Geoscience Australia is a prescribed Australian Government agency within the Industry portfolio. It applies geoscience to Australia's most important challenges by providing geoscience information, services and capability to the Australian Government, industry and stakeholders.

Historical support for satellite remote sensing efforts through receiving ground stations.

Sydney Water Corporation

Sydney Water is Australia's largest water utility. Its area of operations covers 12,700 km2 and includes Sydney, the Illawarra and the Blue Mountains regions. It is a statutory State Owned Corporation, wholly owned by the New South Wales Government.

Supply oceanographic data from the Ocean Reference Station off Sydney.

New South Wales Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH)

OEH cares for and protects NSW’s environment and heritage, which includes the natural environment, Aboriginal country, culture and heritage, and built heritage. OEH supports the community, business and government in protecting, strengthening and making the most of a healthy environment and economy in NSW.

New South Wales - Contributes substantially to the maintenance of the Port Hacking National Reference Station and the Port Hacking Transect, including monthly biogeochemical sampling. NSW OEH also provide data from their system of Waverider buoys off the NSW coastline.

Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) – provided vessel time (Bombora) for NSW AUV deployments.

Department of Fisheries Western Australia

The Department of Fisheries’ primary responsibility is to conserve, develop and manage the fish and aquatic resources of Western Australia to ensure there are ‘fish for the future’. It does this through managing and licensing commercial and recreational fishing activities and protecting the aquatic environment and ecosystems on which fish depend.

Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) – provided vessel time for WA AUV deployments

Animal tagging and monitoring (AATAMS) – servicing of Perth Ocean Tracking Network (OTN) acoustic receivers

Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS)

The Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies at the University of Tasmania is a centre for both research and education. It pursues multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary work to advance understanding of temperate marine, Southern Ocean, and Antarctic environments.

Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) Victoria

EPA is part of the environment portfolio (along with the and Sustainability Victoria) charged with protecting the Victorian environment. EPA is an administrative office of Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) and reports to the Minister for Environment and Climate Change. EPA’s sole role is to regulate pollution and has independent authority to make regulatory decisions under the Environment Protection Act 1970.

Developed, installed and maintain autonomous sampling equipment (measuring temperature, salinity, chlorophyll-a fluorescence, dissolved oxygen and turbidity) on the Spirit of Tasmania 1. Provide near real time data and delayed-mode quality-controlled data.

New South Wales Department of Primary Industries

The Department of Primary Industries is a division within NSW Trade & Investment and works to develop and sustain diverse, profitable food and fibre industries, and ensures best practice management of our natural resources.

  • Autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) – provided ship time for NSW AUV deployments
  • Animal tagging and monitoring (AATAMS) Receivers - provide data from existing NSW network. NSW Fisheries (part of DPI) assist with servicing of the NSW receiver lines

Austral Fisheries

Austral Fisheries is one of Australia’s leading commercial fishing companies, specialising in environmental fishing practices that catch and source sustainable seafood.  Austral catches and processes MSC certified Patagonian Toothfish and Mackerel Icefish, as well as MSC certified wild ocean caught Banana prawns and Tiger prawns for the world markets.

Austral Fisheries provides data from calibrated echosounders on various vessels from their fishing fleet to the Ships of Opportunity Bio-Acoustic Sub-Facility. These bio-acoustic measurements are used to estimate mid-trophic organism distribution and abundance.