22 June 2023

“Adopt a float” event

"Adopt a Float" day at the Institut de la mer in Villefranche-sur-Mer (Sorbonne University/CNRS)

The “Adopt a Float” day on 22 June 2023 at the Institut de la mer in Villefranche-sur-Mer (Sorbonne University/CNRS) was attended by the French Minister for Higher Education and Research, Sylvie Retailleau, HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and Antoine Petit, Chairman and CEO of the CNRS. A large number of VIPs were on hand to witness the day’s work by six classes from Joseph Calderoni primary school in Villefranche-sur-Mer. Over the course of the school year, these six classes – around 150 pupils – adopted “Bob-the-float”, a BGC Argo profiling float, whose journey they followed as part of the “Adopt a float” educational programme run by Carolyn Scheurle, head of the programme, and her team. Bob the float was dropped into the Indian Ocean on 16 October 2022, during the expedition led by Explorations de Monaco, by the scientific teams of Hervé Claustre, co-leader of the BGC-Argo international ocean monitoring programme.

The pupils were able to present their work over the course of the school year, make new discoveries and exchange views with researchers, scientific mediators and invited guests. They also visited the “Indian Ocean Expedition” exhibition by the artist Rémi Leroy, who was on board during the expedition.

Journée Adopt a Float. 22 juin 2022. S.A.S. le Prince Albert II de Monaco, accompagnée de Carolyn Scheurle, salue les différents intervenants. Au second plan de gauche à droite : Roger Roux, maire de Beaulieu-sur-Mer, M. Christophe Trojani, maire de Villefranche-sur Mer, M. Robert CALCAGNO, Directeur général de l'Institut océanographique et Administrateur délégué des Explorations de Monaco, S.E.M Bernard Fautrier, Conseiller spécial de S.A.S. le Prince chargé des questions d'environnement©Mika-Alesi_Palais-princier-de-Monaco.jpg
H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco, accompanied by Carolyn Scheurle, greets the various speakers. In the background, from left to right: Mr Roger Roux, Mayor of Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Mr Christophe Trojani, Mayor of Villefranche-sur-Mer, Mr Robert CALCAGNO, Director General of the Oceanographic Institute and Managing Director of Explorations de Monaco, H.E. Mr Bernard Fautrier, Special Adviser to H.S.H. the Prince, in charge of environmental issues©Mika Alesi. Prince's Palace of Monaco

Bob-the-float ” works for science, ocean education and sustainable development

A float for scientific purposes

The “Bob-the-float” profiling float underwater robot, which has been sailing in the Indian Ocean since 16 October 2022, is part of a flotilla of ultra-modern robots that are helping to observe the ocean by measuring essential ocean parameters. It is part of the international ‘One Argo’ programme, which aims to observe changes in the health of the world’s oceans in the context of climate change using a flotilla of these robots. The Institut de la mer de Villefranche (IMEV) is one of the pioneers of this programme.

Le flotteurBob-the-Float décoré par les étudiants de l'école embarquée à bord du S.A.Agulhas II, juste avant sa mise à l'eau©Didier Théron. Monaco Explorations
The Bob-the-Float float decorated by students from the school on board the S.A. Agulhas II, just before its launch©Didier Théron. Monaco Explorations

An Adopt a float activity in school©LOV/IMEV/CNRS

Presentation by pupils from the Joseph Caldéroni school on 22 June 2023©Thomas Jessin. IMEV.CNRS

Sylvie Retailleau, Minister for Higher Education and Research, with Antoine Petit, Chairman and CEO of CNRS, on her right©Thomas Jessin.IMEV. CNRS

The Minister talks to children from the Joseph Calderoni school in Villefranche-sur-Mer. In front of her, the mayor of Cap-d'Ail, Xavier Beck©Thomas Jessin. IMEV. CNRS

Previous slide
Next slide

A float for educational purposes

In addition to its scientific application, the “Bob-the-float” robot is being used by IMEV’s scientific mediators in the “Adopt a float” educational programme. Like the Joseph Caldéroni primary school in Villefranche-sur-Mer, young pupils in Seychelles and Mauritius have adopted other floats deployed during the Monaco Explorations Indian Ocean Expedition. Profiling floats are excellent tools for bringing ocean sciences into the classroom. 1900 students in France and abroad benefited from this programme in 2022-2023.

From the Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean

Initially deployed in the Mediterranean before being put back in the water during the expedition organised in the Indian Ocean at the end of 2022 by Explorations de Monaco, the “Bob the Float” robot illustrates a desire to make observations that are as eco-responsible as possible. Reusing these highly sophisticated and expensive devices is currently one of the programme’s priorities. Like 4,000 other profiling floats, it collects and transmits biogeochemical data, which is then made freely accessible in real time to scientists around the world.

Flotteur Argo à l'eau. 16_10_2022©Didier Théron_MonacoExplorations
Argo float at sea©Didier THERON. MonacoExplorations
13 May 2022

Indian Ocean Expedition: two artists in residence.

Indian Ocean Expedition: two artists in residence.

On November 15, 2021, Monaco Explorations launched a call for artist residencies in the context of the next expedition scheduled in the Indian Ocean in October and November 2022. In response to the call, 56 applications from artists from 14 different countries were examined by the Selection Committee convened for this purpose. In February, this committee pre-selected six artists. These six artists were then invited to come and present their project to the Committee on Friday, 6 May, at the Oceanographic Museum in Monaco.

The Committee chose two young creators at the end of these auditions: Elsa Rigot and Rémi Leroy. They will both embark onboard S.A. Agulhas II, alongside the teams of scientists involved in this great adventure.

Deliberation of the Committee on 6 May 2022 at the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco. © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute

The composition of the Selection Committee

The Committee that has participated in the selection process since the launch of the call for residency and led the interviews was composed of the following personalities: Robert CALCAGNO, President of the Committee, Director General of the Oceanographic Institute and Managing Director of Monaco Explorations, Françoise GAMERDINGER, Director of Cultural Affairs, Virginie RAIMBERT, Director of the Heritage Institute, Björn DAHLSTRÖM, Director of the New National Museum of Monaco, Thierry LEVIEZ, Director of the Graduate School of Visual Arts of Monaco, Olivier WENDEN, Vice-President of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, François SIMARD, Secretary of the Advisory Committee of the Indian Ocean Expedition, Bernard REILHAC, Director of Development of the Oceanographic Institute and Gilles BESSERO, Director of Monaco Explorations.


Elise Rigot: Telling the Stories of the Saya de Malha Bank

Elise Rigot is a design artist and researcher based in Toulouse, France. Her work questions the links between natural sciences, engineering sciences, and art, as well as the perception we have of the variety of living beings, and how we could make ourselves more sensitive to them. She uses 3D technologies (3D printing, scanning, VR, X-rays, etc.) for their political and aesthetic power, as well as sound and podcasts. Putting oneself in the place of the living beings around us and adopting their point of view is one of her approaches.

Previous slide
Next slide

On 6 May, Elise Rigot described her artistic project to the Committee © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute

Previous slide
Next slide

Rémi Leroy shared with the Committee the artistic rendition of his commitment to the environment © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute.

Rémi Leroy: heading towards an Art-Science dialogue

Is it possible to go beyond words to tell the story of scientific research, too often confined to a hermetic and complex language? How can interdisciplinarity and fieldwork enrich the view of scientists and the public? These reflections constitute the raw material of the projects that Rémi Leroy defends. He tries to unite his different experiences (artist, engineer specialized in renewable energy, teacher) through them. His goal: to contribute to the ecological revolution by creating illustrated stories capable of getting a vast public to conceive other ways of interacting with the environment.

Four other great projects presented on 6 May 2022.

Apart from the two winning candidates, Elise Rigot and Rémi Leroy, four other participating artists were interviewed: Federico Campanale, Elsa Guillaume, Debby Mason, and Toby Wright. All of high quality, the projects were presented with passion and conviction.

Debby Mason lives in Plymouth, England. She specializes in engravings and illustrations of marine life. Her work renders her love of the sea and the amazing life it contains. It is imperative that she shows this beauty and its reality © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute.

Elsa Guillaume, a visual artist, based in Paris, is also a diver. From drawing to sculpture, through installation and video, she develops plastic research dedicated to the representations of the maritime universe © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute.

Federico Campanale, the Amsterdam-based photographer and filmmaker, is an artist who explores concepts related to social interactions and natural phenomena. His videos and photo series deal with emotion, temporal dynamics, and memory processes © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute.

Toby Wright is a painter who lives in Monaco and travels the world with his easel and paintings, searching for exceptional natural sites. He is inspired by the great artists of the past, who pushed the limits of comfort in their quest for beauty. Some in the name of science, others in the name of art, all in the name of humanity © Michel Dagnino. Oceanographic Institute.
Previous slide
Next slide

10 december 2021

The Future of Plastic Waste in Seychelles

TFO Program

Since 2020, the open innovation program “The Future of_ Plastic Waste” has aimed to implement practical solutions for recycling, transformation, and reduction of plastic waste in the Indian Ocean by supporting innovative and multi-stakeholder initiatives in Seychelles. This program is conducted in partnership with the Government of Seychelles, the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD), the company SoScience, and the Société des Explorations de Monaco. It is part of the DiDEM project, coordinated by IRD, which aims to facilitate the dialogue between science and decision-makers for integrated management of coastal and marine environments in the Western Indian Ocean.


The Futur of Plastic Waste in Seychelles
Poster of the TFO Program

6 projects selected

In the wake of the call for projects launched in October 2020, 38 participants met during the partnership days organized on May 27 and 28. These days and the exchanges that followed led to the emergence of six collaborative projects selected in August 2021. They targeted the following actions and objectives


– Understanding and mapping of plastic pollution sources,

– Physical collection and efficient sorting of plastic waste,

– Transformation of collected plastics,

– Environmental education and upstream awareness.

The Futur of Plastic Waste in Seychelles
Anse Capucin. Southeast of Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat.
Previous slide
Next slide

November 30, 2021 in the Seychelles: the members of the jury deliberate...© Katrin Perchat.

3 award-winning projects. And the winners are...

Among these 6 projects, the selection committee, which met on 30 November 2021, designated the 3 award-winning projects of the program. For their launch, they will benefit from support over the first six months and a start-up budget. The complementarity of the selected projects, as well as their feasibility, have been carefully evaluated according to a grid of criteria established beforehand.

Winning project n°1: Launch of an awareness campaign

This campaign will be led by several local actors and brings together multiple skills, such as the Department of Blue Economy, the Foundation for Sustainable Tourism, the Ministry of Education of Seychelles or IRD. It will aim to improve awareness and education on waste among the population of Seychelles and the various actors of civil society. The objectives of this campaign:

– Reduce waste production and increase recycling efforts,

– Minimize residual waste,

– Prevent and limit illegal dumping through a collaborative effort between the various stakeholders in the public and private sectors and civil society.

Winning Project n°2: Connected Collection in Seychelles

This project brings together two local NGOs focused on sustainable tourism development, the Sustainable Tourism Foundation (SSTF) and the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA), a local plastic waste solutions consultancy, Yes Consulting, and a social enterprise based in India: Sanshodhan. Sanshodhan has developed a digital application that links manufacturers, consumers, and recycling companies in a single virtuous cycle. This networking promotes a more transparent, efficient, and sustainable recyclable waste management system. The idea is to adapt this concept to the Seychelles context.


Winning Project n°3: A Recycling Machine for Everyone

While reducing the amount of waste going to landfills, this project aims to promote simple, inexpensive, and easy-to-use technologies to treat and transform waste. It is based on a global community project: the Precious Plastic Project. The idea is to involve local actors and individuals in designing useful and low-impact products to eventually develop a micro-circular economy by creating new products.


Global and large-scale fight against plastic

As in many regions of the world, plastic pollution increases in the Indian Ocean and even affects very isolated areas or islands such as Aldabra. On a regional scale, the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), the French Development Agency (AFD), and the French Facility for Global Environment (FFEM) signed on 9 July 2021 a financing agreement for the ExPLOI project Indian Ocean Plastic Expedition. This regional project aims to coordinate the fight against plastic pollution and to promote the circular economy. It is complementary to the approach taken through the DiDEM project and the TFO initiative in Seychelles.


Stop plastic pollution

Accumulation of plastic waste on a beach in Comoros © IRD - Nourrdine Mirhani

Underwater coral reefs ecosystems in the Indian Ocean are directly impacted by plastic pollution. Eparses Islands © IRD - Pascale Chabanet

Pollution by macro-waste. Glorieuses Islands © IRD - Pascale Chabanet

Accumulation of plastic waste on a beach in Comoros © IRD - Nourrdine Mirhani

Plastic waste in the forest. Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat

Polluted Mangrove. Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat

Previous slide
Next slide

15 november 2021

Call for an artist’s residence on board. Indian Ocean Expedition 2022

Call for artist residency: come aboard the S.A. Agulhas II

As part of its forthcoming expedition to the Indian Ocean in October and November 2022, the Monaco Explorations is launching a call for expressions of interest for an artist residency on board. The S.A. Agulhas II will take on board in Mauritius an international team of around one hundred people: scientists, young researchers and students, filmmakers and photographers, divers, communicators, and civil society actors for a multidisciplinary expedition combining scientific research, public outreach and government cooperation. This new expedition is the first element of the “Monaco Explorations” project. This project has been approved as a contribution to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Sciences for Sustainable Development 2021-2030. In the great tradition of the scientific explorations of the 19th and 20th centuries, Monaco Explorations wishes to enrich the composition of this multi-skilled team by inviting an artist to join  the expedition. Are you interested?

The Indian Ocean 2022 Expedition

Since their launch in April 2017, Monaco Explorations has conducted a dozen expeditions around the world. These expeditions have been rich in experiences in contact with nature and the Ocean and in human encounters. The “Indian Ocean” Expedition is in turn part of this quest for humanism and scientific truth. The main study area is between Reunion, Mauritius and Seychelles. The Saya de Malha plateau will be the main focus of the mission. The planned itinerary is as follows: embarkation in Mauritius around 10 October 2022, followed by Mauritius => Reunion => Aldabra => Mahe => Saya de Malha => Saint-Brandon => Mauritius. The mission will end in Mauritius around 20 November 2022.

Mission océan Indien. Appel à résidence d'artiste
Trajet prévisionnel de la mission océan Indien 2022 des Explorations de Monaco

Are you a candidate?

This call for expressions of interest is open to working artists of all nationalities.

How to express your interest and submit your application?

Please send your registration form and the documents in the application file by e-mail to the following address


Timetable and selection process

Deadline for applications: 7 January 2022 midnight CET. A selection committee composed of several personalities from the world of the sea and exploration, art and scientific culture will draw up a list of shortlisted candidates for an audition during which they will be invited to present their project orally. The shortlist will be announced to the selected candidates from 25 February 2022 and they should be called for their presentation during the week of 25 April 2022.

The final results will be announced by 13 May 2022.

The winning artist will then be notified of all the details of the assignment and the organizers’ expectations.

Composition of the intention file

The application file requested is composed of the following elements:

– The application form.

– A curriculum vitae (1 page maximum).

– A description/argument expressing your motivations for this project (1 page maximum).

– A concept note explaining what you wish to create and achieve from the two-month expedition and residence on board, your vision of the project. Indicate the creations or productions that you imagine during the whole project (2 pages maximum).

– An artistic dossier (book) presenting your past, present and future work and projects (20 pages maximum). If you wish, the portfolio may include letters of recommendation, external reviews and opinions on your creations.

– A description of the technical and financial arrangements for the preparation and production of the work and its distribution. Specify the partners and support you intend to mobilize and the nature of the contributions expected from them.

– Your availability during the three months preceding the embarkation period and the six months following the expedition.