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A portable depth sampling instrument for microplastics and eDNA applications

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Studies suggest that 99.8% of oceanic plastic sinks below the ocean's surface. Until now, microplastics sampling equipment either only skimmed the water’s surface or required large and expensive research vessels with industrial deployment capabilities for below-surface sampling. 

Ascension is a tethered vertical profiling instrument designed to collect filtered microplastic samples throughout the water column. Light, portable and easily deployable from a small vessel, Ascension significantly increases your sample collection capabilities and reduces/eliminates sample contamination by filtering samples directly in situ.




Use in multiple systems, including oceans, freshwater, estuaries, rivers and lakes. Deploy from small boats or configure for fixed installations on platforms like buoys, docks, wastewater and stormwater outfalls for time series studies, or integrate with remotely operated surface or underwater vehicles.


Light, portable and easy to deploy from small vessels.

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Built to withstand adverse ocean conditions and reach depths down to 400m without the need for large research vessels or industrial deployment equipment.

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  • Operate in real-time deployment mode or upload an automated mission for autonomous time-series sampling 

  • Minimize filter handling and potential contamination by filtering directly in situ  

  • Recharge the battery to maximizes deployment time and reduce primary battery waste

  • Manually lower and raise through the water column by hand with a real-time communication tether or fix to existing infrastructure using standardized mounting points 

  • Monitor depth, temperature, flow rate and total volume filtered in real-time to collect highly targeted samples based on your research interests 

  • Control filtration flow rates, depth and sample selection via a real-time computer-based deployment interface  

  • Export deployment data into a standardized report  

  • Intuitive deployment interface: no coding or confusing terminal commands needed to deploy Ascension 

  • Connect to the tether module over a high-speed Bluetooth® link, allowing the operator to remain out of the elements throughout the deployment 



  • Dry Weight of 10 Kg (22 lbs) 

  • Compatible with 47 mm diameter mesh filters down to 0.45 μm pore size 

  • Up to 14 discrete mesh filters can be sampled per deployment through 7 distinct fluidic channels 

  • Each fluidic channel supplies clearance for up to 2 filter housings in a nested in-line format 

  • Instrument rated to 400m depth 

  • Includes a 200m deployment tether and Bluetooth® connected tether reel 

  • Capable of autonomous sampling with user-programmable mission scripts 

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Need to analyze your filters?

Send your microplastic samples to our lab for physical and chemical analysis.

Ascension Microplastics and eDNA Sampling Instrument


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