João Tasso F.  Borges de Sousa
Underwater Systems and Technologies Laboratory
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Porto University, Portugal

João Tasso de Figueiredo Borges de Sousa's research interests include unmanned vehicles, control architectures, control and coordination, and dynamic optimization. He has been leading the design, implementation, and deployment of advanced unmanned vehicle systems with the support of projects funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology, the Portuguese Ministry of Defense, NATO and the European Union, and also by ONR and DARPA in the US. In 2006 he received the national BES Innovation National Award for the design of the Light Autonomous Underwater Vehicle. In 2007 he received an outstanding teaching award from Porto University. He has coauthored 20 journal papers as well as over 200 conference papers. He is a member of the AUVSI maritime advisory committee.


This talk reviews the status and needs for development of a national ocean policy for Mozambique, with a goal of encouraging international partnerships and engagement in this process.  Mozambique has the largest coastline along the Western Indian Ocean of any country in Central East Africa.  It has recently established several marine protected areas, including the largest in Africa, a UN World Heritage Site.  The coast supports an important artisanal fishery and is home to high marine biodiversity and iconic marine species including dugongs, whale sharks, great white sharks, manta rays, and sea turtles.  Mozambique faces climate-related challenges including latitudinal changes in patterns of rainfall and flooding from Indian Ocean monsoons which are increasing sediment runoff and threatening the health of fisheries and reefs.  Sustainable ocean resource use also continues to be threatened by Somali pirates, illegal fishing and illegal disposal of ship oily wastes at sea.  Additionally, just offshore of the World Heritage reef sanctuary boundary is the transit route for 30% of the world’s oil tanker traffic and at the same time an area now being intensely explored for oil and gas development.  A technological approach using unmanned underwater, surface and aircraft systems is presented as one component of improving ocean monitoring in Mozambique as the process of developing a national ocean policy for Mozambique begins.

You are invited to stay for a reception following the forum.