The Hausgarten deep sea observatory was established in the Fram Strait in 1998 to study long-term processes and diversity changes in the plankton and benthos. The Fram Strait essentially forms a connection between Arctic and Antlantic waters and due to the Fram Straits importance for global ocean circulation, it is vital to understand the physical but also biological dynamics of this important area in a time of rapid climate change.
The observatory comprises several important time series of plankton, meio, macro and megafauna but also bacterial communities in the deep sea sediment (since 1999) and particle fluxes from the water column to the benthos (using sediment traps). The Hausgarten observatory is also an integral component of the FRAM project in which a range of new technologies for sustained, (semi) autonomous observations will greatly extend the scope of ocean observations in the Fram Strait. This will facilitate detailed insights into the long-term biodiversity dynamics of the area and how they are linked to physico-chemical conditions.
The Hausgarten is well-connected in a series of national an international collaborations and has also been registered as an official LTER site.