The Fixed point Open Ocean Observatory network (FixO 3 ) seeks to integrate European open ocean fixed point observatories and to improve access to these key installations for the broader community.

These will provide multidisciplinary observations in all parts of the oceans from the air-sea interface to the deep seafloor. Coordinated by the National Oceanography Centre, UK, FixO 3 will build on the significant advances largely achieved through the FP7 programmes EuroSITES, ESONET and CARBOOCEAN. With a budget of 9.7 Million Euros over 4 years (starting October 2012) the proposal has 29 partners drawn from academia, research institutions and SME’s. In addition 14 international experts from a wide range of disciplines comprise an Advisory Board.

The programme will be achieved through:

1. Coordination activities to integrate and harmonise the current technological, procedural and e-infrastructure processes. Strong links will be fostered with the wider community across academia, industry, policy and the general public through outreach, knowledge exchange and training activities.

2. Support actions to offer a) access to observatory infrastructures to those who do not currently have such access, and b) free and open data services and products.

3. Joint research activities to innovate and enhance the current capability for multidisciplinary in situ ocean observation. Open ocean observation is currently a high priority for European marine and maritime activities, as encapsulated in the recent EurOCEAN 2010 conference declaration and at an international level in the OceanObs09 conference statement. The programme proposed will provide important data on environmental products and services to address the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and in support of the EU Integrated Maritime Policy. The FixO 3 network will provide free and open access to in situ fixed point data of the highest quality. It will provide a strong integrated framework of open ocean facilities in the Atlantic from the Arctic to the Antarctic and throughout the Mediterranean, enabling an integrated, regional and multidisciplinary approach to understand natural and anthropogenic change in the ocean.