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Churchill Marine Observatory (CMO)

The Churchill Marine Observatory (CMO)

The Churchill Marine Observatory

A new national marine research base on the shores of Hudson Bay

August 10, 2020 — 

Led by the University of Manitoba, the Churchill Marine Observatory (CMO) is a unique, highly innovative and multidisciplinary research facility located in Churchill, Manitoba, adjacent to Canada’s only Arctic deep-water port. The CMO is dedicated to studies on the detection, impact and mitigation of spills of oil and related contaminants in sea ice-covered waters, as well as extreme weather, climate change, and fresh-water marine coupling studies. The development of the CMO is funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and the Provinces of Manitoba and Alberta, and several federal and private partners.

The CMO has 3 science priorities:

  • Oil and other transportation related contaminant spills in sea ice
  • Climate change, extreme weather and teleconnections
  • Freshwater-marine coupling

The core CMO infrastructure is comprised of:

  1. The Ocean-Sea Ice Mesocosm (OSIM) consists of two outdoor pools located in Churchill, which are designed to simultaneously accommodate contaminated and control experiments on various scenarios of oil spills in sea ice and/or to examine processing controlling how freshwater mixes with and affects marine systems.
  2. The Environmental Observing (EO) system is a series of taut-line moorings located in the Churchill estuary and along the main shipping channel across the Hudson Bay and Strait. The EO system provides a state-of-the-art monitoring system and can be used to scale process studies conducted in OSIM to Hudson Bay and the larger Arctic environment.
  3. The Research Vessel (RV) William Kennedy is a 65-foot former fishing vessel that has been retrofitted for Arctic science expeditions.

For more information about the CMO project, please contact:

Scientific Director: Dr. David Barber
david [dot] barber [at] umanitoba [dot] ca

OSIM Chief Scientist: Dr. Fei Wang
feiyue [dot] wang [at] umanitoba [dot] ca

EO & RV Chief Scientist: Dr. C.J. Mundy
cj [dot] mundy [at] umanitoba [dot] ca

Project Coordinator: Heather Stark
heather [dot] stark [at] umaniotba [dot] ca, 204-480-1061

Board of Directors Chair: Dr. Gary Stern
gary [dot] stern [at] umanitoba [dot] ca


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