The Porcupine Abyssal Plain Sustained Observatory (PAP-SO) monitors long-term change in the environment of the Northeast Atlantic, west of the UK. It records everything from atmosphere and weather, surface ocean physics, chemistry, and biology, conditions in the deep-ocean interior, to benthic biology and ecology, 3 miles below the ocean surface.

Location of PAP ObservatoryThe observatory is coordinated by the UK’s National Oceanography Centre, as part of the Natural Environment Research Council’s National Capability programme. The PAP-SO forms a key part of the UK’s commitment to a larger international network of ocean observatories that aim to monitor change in the global ocean.

This site has been studied for over 30 years. In 2017, NERC’s newest research vessel, the Royal Research Ship Discovery, was used to carry out the annual service of the observatory.



NF-POGO Fellows

2017 – Jessica Song (Malaysia, Asia)

2018 – Carolina Machado Lima de Camargo (Brazil, Latin America)

2019 – Vanessa Fernández Rodríguez (Colombia, Latin America)