The Nato Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE) is set to start an oceanographic campaign, Glisten 15, in the Tyrrhenian Sea, north of Elba Island, Italy at the end of this month.

Glisten 15 is designed to test new sensors and solutions for ocean characterisation using underwater gliders.

During the campaign, scientists from CMRE will operate on board the Nato Research Vessel Alliance in collaboration with researchers from nine partner institutions of five Nato nations including Canada, Italy, Norway, the US and UK.

"A deeper knowledge of this area could be also beneficial to the local communities for a more effective protection of the marine environment."

CMRE Glisten 15 scientist in charge Yong-Min Jiang said: "A deeper knowledge of this area could be also beneficial to the local communities for a more effective protection of the marine environment.

"The final data will be made available to the scientific community under request."

According to CMRE, the trial will be conducted after five days of engineering tests.

Scientists will be responsible for collecting acoustic, oceanographic and geophysical data using both traditional and novel observation methods. It includes underwater gliders and the unmanned underwater robotic platforms.

The campaign is aimed to test the readiness and feasibility of the novel payloads and smart sensing methodologies that the centre has developed to enhance present ocean environment characterisation capabilities.

As part of this initiative, CMRE will deploy seven gliders to study the properties of the seabed, water column and sea surface, and examine the seabed characterisation using naturally occurring ambient noise that is generated by the sea surface waves.

Glisten is part of the CMRE Environmental Knowledge and Operational Effectiveness (EKOE) programme that aims to develop scientific and technical solutions to the ocean environment predictions for Nato nations and navies.