The NOC has developed a miniaturised phosphate sensor using microfluidic lab-on-chip (LOC) technology. This sensor allows the collection of in situ data with high spatial-temporal resolution throughout the water column (sample time ~20 minutes). The technology uses an adapted version of the molybdate blue assay; it carries on-board standards for in situ recalibration which provides high accuracy and precision. It has a mean power consumption of 1.8 W, a detection limit of 40 nM, a dynamic range of 0.14–10 μM, and an infield accuracy of 4 ± 4.5%
This sensor has been deployed on pontoons and other coastal hardware, landers, a ship’s underway system, autonomous underwater vehicle, and a remote-operated vehicle.