ISOBatA: Italian Pilot project for the exploitation of underway seafloor datasets in the Antarctic region and surrounding areas.
ISOBATA is a recently approved PNRA (Italian National Antarctic Reasearch Program) Following the example of USA and German research vessels example (Wölfl et al.2019), Isobata designed a systematic approach to efficiently exploit seaﬂoor data sets collected within the Antarctic region, during transit times of the renewed Icebreaker R/V Laura Bassi (former E. Shackleton). International scientific exchanges will be critical in defining best practices and standardized protocols for collecting high-quality multibeam and underway data during transit time in the Ross Sea and surrounding Area. Optimizing opportunistic data collection will aim to provide supranational scientific products in order to highlight the key role of underway data in remote regions. The project takes into account the need to store all acquired data and metadata, a final project output will be the establishment of an Italian Antarctic Bathymetric Data Repository integrated with the PNRA National Antarctic Data Center (NADC). This will constitute the national reference for the implementation of the “Hydrographic Surveying of Antarctic Waters Working Paper”, in support of the Seabed 2030 project (Jakobsonn et al 2017, Mayer et al. 2018). High-standard protocols and best practices will primarily inform data acquisition, processing and interpretation. Data collection plan has been designed promoting the optimization of resources with an effective saving in the use of infrastructural and logistic support. . Mapping the Southern Ocean by 2030 will require long-term projects; at his natural end, ISOBatA research units will work to ensure that all the gathered know-how, database and international collaborations will continue as a Multidisciplinary Observatory Underway Project (MIMOSA – Multidisciplinary Italian Marine Observatory For the Study of Antarctic). ISOBatA fulfil SCAR, CONMAP, IHO and Seabed 2030 guidelines.