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The NEutrino Mediterranean Observatory-Submarine Network 1 (NEMO-SN1) seafloor observatory is located in the central Mediterranean Sea, Western Ionian Sea, off Eastern Sicily (Southern Italy) at 2100-m water depth, 25 km from the harbor of the city of Catania. It is a prototype of a cabled deep-sea multiparameter observatory and the first one operating with real-time data transmission in Europe since 2005. NEMO-SN1 is also the first-established node of the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor Observatory (EMSO), one of the incoming European large-scale research infrastructures included in the Roadmap of the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) since 2006. EMSO will specifically address long-term monitoring of environmental processes related to marine ecosystems, climate change, and geohazards. NEMO-SN1 has been deployed and developed over the last decade thanks to Italian funding and to the European Commission (EC) project European Seas Observatory NETwork-Network of Excellence (ESONET-NoE, 2007-2011) that funded the Listening to the Deep Ocean-Demonstration Mission (LIDO-DM) and a technological interoperability test (http://www.esonet-emso.org). NEMO-SN1 is performing geophysical and environmental long-term monitoring by acquiring seismological, geomagnetic, gravimetric, accelerometric, physico-oceanographic, hydroacoustic, and bioacoustic measurements. Scientific objectives include studying seismic signals, tsunami generation and warnings, its hydroacoustic precursors, and ambient noise characterization in terms of marine mammal sounds, environmental and anthropogenic sources. NEMO-SN1 is also an important test site for the construction of the Kilometre-Cube Underwater Neutrino Telescope (KM3NeT), another large-scale research infrastructure included in the ESFRI Roadmap based on a large volume neutrino telescope. The description of the observatory and its most recent implementations is presented. On June 9, 2012, NEMO-SN1 was successfully de- loyed and is working in real time.
Date of Publication: April 2013