The TELEPRESENCE cruise took place 1–7 December 2018 and saw the HROV Ariane deployed from the Europe. The aim was primarily to validate the pertinence of the telepresence concept on vessels of the French Oceanographic Fleet.

Telepresence should enable the greatest number of scientists and students to take part, from the shore, in the exploratory dives of remotely controlled submersibles. Information technologies are enabling us to optimize research cruises, to circumvent the limited number of available berths on the ships. Eventually this service will be offered routinely on eligible ships of the French Oceanographic Fleet.

During the cruise of the same name, telepresence was used between the ship and the conference room of the Geoazur Institute in Nice (France). Data from the Ariane was projected live, while the shore-based scientific team held a videoconference with the shipboard team. As a result the mission turned into a veritable educational tool, integrating students on the master’s degree research programme of the Geoazur University (Master 3G) in the first semester. Scientific objectives were twofold and related to the study of tectonic and sedimentary changes occurring on the Ligurian Margin. The project also enabled the ship to share a complete dive of the Ariane on the Nioulargue Bank with all the IFREMER staff on 3 December 2018 via IFREMER’s intranet.