About the centre

SFI Smart Ocean aims to create a wireless observation system for multi-parameter monitoring of underwater environments and installations. The system, based on autonomous smart sensors, is a fundament for the realization of flexible, distributed, robust, energy efficient, cost-effective, and safe marine measurements, data-handling, and remote operations, required to solve societal and industrial challenges.

The Centre addresses selected novel measurement technologies: a smart sensor platform commencing adaptive sampling, data pre-processing and compression, two-way underwater acoustic communication a novel underwater network architecture for optimal spectrum utilization, and software technology covering the chain from data acquisition to interfacing open data platforms.

R&D challenges include: standardized, low energy and low cost underwater wireless communication, software and systems to enable Internet of Underwater Things, developing sensors and technologies for measurement of integrity and environment over larger areas. Anti-biofouling nano-coating and methods for optimizing the monitoring system for high stability and measurement quality are also key to ensuring reliable data over long time-periods.

Our vendor company partners are implementing the developed technology components and software from the smart sensor platform in their solutions, increasing market shares through new innovations. Standardized interfaces and open data platforms allow for further value creation also outside the Centre. The technology will enable increased autonomy for sustainable and profitable ocean industry operations, and fact-based ocean resource management, important to both ocean industries and authorities.

The technology

For ocean industry to coexist with nature in a secure and sustainable way, data and facts are needed.

Today, this is done through numerous measurements in the ocean, coastal areas and fjords, from ships, buoys and radio controlled or autonomous vehicles.

There is, however, a demand for real time measurements and long-term data collection, needed to do systematic monitoring of important parameters of critical underwater locations over time.

SFI Smart Ocean is developing a wireless observation network which will be able to give a warning in real time when something is happening under water. Whether it’s critical industry equipment or living conditions for sea life, data can be collected for both continuous status reports and long-term monitoring.

Areas of application

General uses

  • Sensor technology for cost and CO2-efficient remote installation
  • Communication- and network components for adaption and implementation
  • Open technology; selected sensors are developed in the Centre, others can be added in various scenarios
  • Generic technologies for integrity measurements
  • Environmental monitoring sensors; gravimetric sensors, turbidity, oxygen, CO2, methane, pH, current, temperature, pressure, conductivity, noise
  • Enabling technology for sustainable and cost-efficient remote operations

Petroleum industry

  • Leak detection sensors for hydrocarbons and CO2
  • Future additions: Stationary sensors for integrity monitoring of subsea structures and monitoring of process integrity


  • Integrity monitoring of marine structures and tension on mooring lines

Offshore wind power

  • Acoustic sensors for integrity monitoring of turbine structures; cement grouting integrity, steel integrity, and monitoring of tension on mooring lines
  • Distributed measurements of noise in the ocean and structural vibrations

Our partners

SFI Smart Ocean was started December 1st 2020 with a mission to develop a novel sensor- and communication system to secure sustainable ocean industry operation and fact-based ocean management. The diversity in the centre partners’ background and experience will be utilized to stimulate innovation within underwater sensor and network technology, as well as operational methods.

For an SFI to be successful, it is crucial to recruit partners with background in education and industrial R&D, ranging from large scale end users to SMEs.

This also includes student projects on all levels; bachelor, master and PhD students being engaged in different activities in the centre.

Get in touch

If you want to hear more about our centre or are interested in becoming a partner, please get in touch.


Ingvar Henne

Centre director

Phone: +47 900 93 038