The IMAR – Institute of the Sea, is a private non-profit association dedicated to the management of scientific projects and infrastructures related to marine sciences and technology. Uniquely located in the middle of the North Atlantic, the IMAR unit of the University of Azores (IMAR-UAc) has a strong association with the “Instituto de Investigação em Ciências do Mar” (OKEANOS - UAc) specialized in open-ocean and deep-sea ecosystem functioning and management. In this oceanic context, OKEANOS and IMAR-UAc research activities fall under 5 interconnected themes: Global Change, Blue Economy, Technology, Governance and Literacy.
IMAR - UAc offers:
Given its privileged location, IMAR and OKEANOS-UAc offer the unique opportunity to study a diversity of oceanic ecosystems and environments that are usually too remote and difficult to access: seamounts, hydrothermal vents, abyssal plains, pelagic and mesopelagic realms and the vast Mid-Atlantic Ocean Ridge.
To access these ecosystems , IMAR and OKEANOS-UAc provide fully equipped oceanic research vessels and a wide array of equipment, facilities and diving support adapted to open-sea, deep-sea and coastal studies. Two in-situ natural laboratories are worth mentioning: the Condor sea-mount and the D. João de Castro shallow water hydrothermal vent field.
IMAR and OKEANOS-UAc provide access to both wild and cultivated marine organisms and to several facilities for maintenance, culture and experimental work, of which the AquaLab and the DeepSeaLab stand out. Several fully-equiped laboratories and wet labs are also available to conduct research.
In addition, IMAR and OKEANOS-UAc provide expert advice for research, industry and decision-makers in matters relating with the marine environment (e.g.: monitoring and conservation), aquaculture, fisheries and biotechnology.