SeaArt – Long term establishment of SEAgrass ecosystems through biodegradable ARTificial meadows

Seagrass meadows are important marine ecosystems, which ensures coastal protection e.g. by wave reduction and sediment stabilisation. Nevertheless, they are highly endangered and are threatened by decline. Restoration efforts are inherently difficult as the absence of seagrass leads to enhanced hydrodynamic energy and turbidity levels, which restrict seagrass growth.

To break the cycle, researchers of a joint project in Lower Saxony will develop artificial seagrass over the next four years, which would look and feel similar to the natural seagrass and imitates the properties of natural seagrass plants, thereby enabling natural seagrass to establish within and around the artificial structure.

A key aspect of this project is the usage of fully biodegradable materials for the development of the artificial seagrass, to ensure that no potentially harmful non-degradable substances will be introduced into the system and no structures remain in the system.

The aim of the proposed method is to establish a purely long-term natural seagrass meadow without the need to manually remove the initial structures, as they will disintegrate over time.

Further information on the project and its progress you can find here.

Project summary

  • Project title: SeaArt – Long term establishment of SEAgrass ecosystems through biodegradable ARTificial meadows
  • Project administration: Volkswagenstiftung, Niedersächsisches Vorab
  • Funding: Ministry for Science and Culture of the Land of Lower Saxony within the framework of the coastal and marine research of Lower Saxony
  • Project management: Institute of Geoecology of the Technische Universität Braunschweig
  • Project partners: IfBB – Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites at Hochschule Hannover – University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Forschungszentrum Küste of the Leibniz University of Hanover, Franzius-Institute for Hydraulic, Waterways and Coastal Engineering at the Leibniz University of Hanover, Soiltec GmbH
  • Project period: June 2016 – May 2020



Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andrea Siebert-Raths,