Manta net oceanography research

Manta net oceanography research

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Credit: NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Manta net oceanography research. Manta net floating on the surface of the ocean. The mouth (black) of the net is at left, with the net being dragged alongside research vessels to sample debris and other particulate matter at the surface of the water. Buoyant 'wings (white) ensure the mouth stays at the surface of the water. Seawater enters the mouth and is filtered through a fine, mesh plankton net (behind mouth). Each towing session lasts 15 minutes and filters a surface area equivalent to an Olympic-sized swimming pool. The debris and marine organisms are concentrated at the 'cod end' of the net (lower right). The filter catches items larger than one-third of a millimetre in diameter. Other filters and sampling methods are used to obtain specimens of items down to 20 micrometres across.

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