Advances in measuring ocean salinity with an optical sensor

Type Article
Date 2011-11
Language English
Author(s) Le Menn Marc1, De La Tocnaye J. L. De Bougrenet2, Grosso P.2, Delauney Laurent3, Podeur Christian3, Brault P.4, Guillerme O.4
Affiliation(s) 1 : SHOM, CS 92803, F-29228 Brest 2, France.
2 : TELECOM Bretagne, CS 83818, F-29238 Brest 3, France.
3 : IFREMER, F-92138 Issy Les Moulineaux, France.
4 : NKE, ZI Kerandre, F-56700 Hennebont, France.
Source Measurement Science & Technology (0957-0233) (Iop Publishing Ltd), 2011-11 , Vol. 22 , N. 11 , P. 1-8
DOI 10.1088/0957-0233/22/11/115202
WOS© Times Cited 7
Keyword(s) refractive index, seawater, density, salinity, refractometer
Abstract Absolute salinity measurement of seawater has become a key issue in thermodynamic models of the oceans. One of the most direct ways is to measure the seawater refractive index which is related to density and can therefore be related to the absolute salinity. Recent advances in high resolution position sensitive devices enable us to take advantage of small beam deviation measurements using refractometers. This paper assesses the advantages of such technology with respect to the current state-of-the-art technology. In particular, we present the resolution dependence on refractive index variations and derive the limits of such a solution for designing seawater sensors well suited for coastal and deep-sea applications. Particular attention has been paid to investigate the impact of environmental parameters, such as temperature and pressure, on an optical sensor, and ways to mitigate or compensate them have been suggested here. The sensor has been successfully tested in a pressure tank and in open oceans 2000 m deep.
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