COMMON SENSE Innovative Sensor Development Factsheet

COMMON SENSE  has a new factsheet entitled ‘Innovative Sensor Development’. This factsheet details the highlights and technical descriptions for both the Microplastics Sensor and Mini Seawater Sampling System (MISS) System. It was originally debuted to accompany Sensor Demonstrations at Oceanology International 2016.


The factsheet is available to view and download here.

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How many microplastics are really in the sea?

We will have a preliminary answer on May 15th if the weather is good! On that day, the Barcelona Foundation for Ocean Sailing’s (FNOB) boat named "King Fisher" will leave the harbour of Barcelona and go for a half day tour to measure the concentration of microplastics in the sea within 25 miles distance from the Spanish coast.

The boat, an IMOCA 60 yacht of 18 metre length, will be equipped with LEITAT's highly sensitive microplastics sensor capable of measuring the amount of microplastics such as PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) and polystyrene in the surface water, between 20cm and 100 cm depth.

The exceptional thing about this testing exercise is that the sensors installed on the boat will continuously transmit information via wireless connection to the servers of COMMON SENSE researchers. The entire data collection is automatically done and the boat's skipper does not need to intervene at any point the process.

This experiment will be repeated with a scientific research vessel a few months later in the Baltic Sea, under the guidance of project partners of The Institute of Oceanology Polish Academy of Science (IOPAN). The microplastics sensor could even potentially sail the high seas if the Kingfisher boat gets selected for the 2016 edition of the "Vendée Globe", a round the world race which starts in November. This means that the King Fisher will sail around the world with the sensors installed and track microplastics concentration for the length of its journey.

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Caption: Partners from LEITAT and FNOB prepare the Microplastics sensor for testing. Credit: FNOB

Watch our COMMON SENSE video


The COMMON SENSE project has developed an in-depth video highlighting both the impressive results generated by the project, as well as their relevance to ongoing marine monitoring requirements on a European and Member State level. 

Please follow this link to view the COMMON SENSE Project Video 2017


COMMON SENSE has a short project video shot on location in the Mediterranean sea during a COMMON SENSE research cruise for sensors testing with our partners CNR.

We hope you enjoy it!

An Introduction to the COMMON SENSE Project from AquaTT on Vimeo.

If you would like to be the first to hear all the latest COMMON SENSE news you can follow us on Twitter: @COMMONSENSE_EU


Sailing for Science with FNOB

COMMON SENSE partners FNOB, in a continuous effort to protect the environment and in particular the planet’s oceans have made available two IMOCA 60 boats which will be used as platforms to test the COMMON SENSE microplastics sensor. This innovative sensor will shortly be deployed with these boats in the Mediterranean sea. The boats feature our COMMON SENSE logo so if you are lucky enough to be in the Barcelona harbour area- keep an eye out for them!

The boat is also committed to carry the microplastics sensor during its participation in the round the world solo the Vendée Globe which departs November 2016 and which will sail for 25,000 miles across the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans.

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Caption: COMMON SENSE logo on one of FNOB's IMOCA 60 racing boats Credit: FNOB

Say Hello to COMMON SENSE at Oceanology International 2016

COMMON SENSE will be presented at Oceanology International the world’s leading marine science and ocean technology exhibition and conference which is taking place from 15- 17 March 2016 in London, Excel. COMMON SENSE will take part in workshops and poster presentations as part of The Oceans of Tomorrow’ event hosted by the UK’s National Oceanography Centre (NOC).

Members of the COMMON SENSE team will be available to meet and greet visitors throughout the event at stand A315. They will also have interactive demonstrations featuring their state of the art sensors including a Mini-Seawater Sampling System and a Microplastics Analyser. If you are vising the exhibition the team invites you to call by and learn more about the exciting work of the COMMON SENSE project and the future of marine monitoring.

Tiltshift RVCNR's RV Minerva Uno prepares to leave port in Sicily on a research cruise to deploy COMMON SENSE protoype sensors


EC flag The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7 /2007-2013) under grant agreement no 614155. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the European Union cannot be held responsible for any use which maybe made of the information contained therein.