HYDROPTIC, 8 allée du catchere, 31170 Colomier, France
Text in English Texte en français Phone: 05 61 07 01 46 Fax: 09 67 16 01 46 EMAIL

Jérôme Coindat
GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE severely impacts the functioning of marine and fresh-water microorganism ecosystems and is reflected in their changing biodiversity and structure. Thus, scientific surveys of the biology and environmental parameters of these populations provide unique information to help us understand the relationship between their environmental forcing and plankton dynamics. These surveys are expensive in terms of the amount of expert time required to identify, enumerate and compare the sampling results.

"HYDROPTIC's key objective is to facilitate the automation of the identification, size distribution and enumeration of zooplankton species and sediments in the waters of the world. We believe that by developing systems that will reduce the expert time spent at the microscope in routine identification and enumeration of zooplankton and by providing a repeatable system for the comparison of the characteristics of zooplankton populations we can help advance the important ongoing scientific investigations into the effects of climate change and global warming.
HYDROPTIC is the developer, manufacturer and distributor of its systems under exclusive licence from and in active cooperation with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France's governmental scientific establishment and L'Université Pierre et Marie Curie. In particular, we acknowledge the research and innovation by the scientists at CNRS L'Observatoire Océanologique who developed the system."
Jérôme COINDAT, Managing Director, HYDROPTIC

L'Isle en Dodon
HYDROPTIC is located in the village of L'Isle en Dodon well within range of Toulouse, the aerospace and high technology centre of France. This proximity has allowed us to develop lasting partnerships with the high-tech companies who provide many of the fabrication skills that go into our systems. Much of the experimentation and testing necessary to maintain HYDROPTIC's products at the forefront of world technology is carried out at the CNRS L'Observatoire Océanologique at Villefranche sur Mer on the Mediterranean coast.

HYDROPTIC manufactures and distributes the ZooSCAN, UVP and Nemo systems world-wide. These systems are designed and fabricated to the highest technical standards specifically for the collection, identification and enumeration of zooplankton and microscopic sediment particles in both fresh and salt water.

ZooSCAN in the lab


The Zooscan system consists of a laboratory device that captures high-quality digital images of the organisms and particles in 1litre, conventionally collected, water samples. These samples may contain as many as 5000 individual zooplankton such that specimens as small as 200 µm can be readily identified on the computer screen. Integrating these images with available open source software allows the automatic identification and subsequent enumeration of in excess of 75% of the individuals present. This identification is effected by comparing the digital image with a fauna image database.



The UVP (Underwater Vision Profiler) also captures high quality digital images of water and zooplankton samples but in this case the images are acquired by a camera IN SITU and to a depth of up to 6000m! The computerised device is designed to be combined with the standard CTD (Conductivity, Temperature and Depth) 'rosettes' used on most oceanographic survey ships and can be programmed to acquire images at specific times and/or depths and transmit the data to the surface for storage. It can also be deployed from a moored buoy fitted with a programmable winch where it can be programmed to acquire and store images unattended for up to six months. The same software used with ZooScan provides the automated identification and enumeration however the lower size limit of identification of species is 200 µm.



The Nemo sampling reservoir is a marked advance on currently available models employing a high-density, erosion resistant polypropylene casing with stainless steel fittings and incorporating a drainage port which can easily be fitted with mesh having the same mesh-size as the sample net.

HYDROPTIC works closely with CNRS to develop, manufacture and distribute other ancilliary equipment and software to support these systems and provides training and support for their application. HYDROPTIC's clients include Universities and Research Organisations carrying out scientific investigations in the oceans and waters of all 5 continents.

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The Tara is carrying an UVP for particle counting and plankton investigation on her round-the-world scientific voyage.

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