Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University (Harbor Branch) has been selected by the Waitt Institute for Discovery to carry out a series of voyages of exploration in the Straits of Florida and beyond.
The Waitt Institute, in partnership with Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, is making available cutting edge, unmanned, deep ocean exploration tools called autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). The inaugural expedition launches on December 4, 2008, and taps the scientific expertise and resources of Harbor Branch to explore Florida’s rare and vulnerable deep coral reefs.
The expedition will utilize these AUVs to create high definition sonar maps of deep water Lophelia coral reefs. These Deep Sea Coral Ecosystems (DSCEs) are currently under threat from destructive bottom trawling and other human-caused impacts. The detailed bathymetric maps compiled during the CATALYST ONE mission will provide much-needed data to researchers and government officials on potential areas for designation as marine protected areas and habitat areas of particular concern in order to protect these fragile resources.
The expedition will be led by John Reed, research professor at Harbor Branch, who has been studying and working to protect these deep corals for over 30 years. "Currently, there are better maps of the surface of the moon and Mars than the sea bottom off Florida’s coastline,” said Reed. “Our mission is to use the two AUVs to map this area of Florida’s deep sea coral reefs for the first time.”
For the initial expedition, Harbor Branch is contributing ocean exploration expertise, expedition logistics, science plan development and execution, as well as exploration resources, including the research vessel Seward Johnson.
A newly-formed partnership dubbed the CATALYST Program is making this and future expeditions possible. CATALYST is a partnership between Waitt Institute for Discovery and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to carry out a series of deep-sea expeditions that make available for the first time a versatile and highly portable deep-sea tool kit and operations team, which can be rapidly deployed anywhere in the world. This unprecedented collaboration features the Waitt Institute’s two newly built Hydroid REMUS 6000 AUVs, which can explore depths down to 6,000 meters, or 3.7 miles, below the ocean’s surface without a human crew or cables connecting them to a research vessel. These innovative multi-sensor platforms are equipped with high-tech survey instruments capable of recording critical oceanographic data, photo-imaging deep-sea features and producing detailed sonar maps of the ocean floor.
As the founder of the CATALYST Program, the Waitt Institute for Discovery commissioned the construction of two REMUS 6000 AUVs and currently directs the implementation of CATALYST expeditions.
“We are enthusiastic about our partnership with WHOI to make available deep-water technology to the broader oceanographic community,” said Ted Waitt, founder and president of the Waitt Institute for Discovery and founder and former chairman of Gateway, Inc. “We have a mutual objective: to accelerate and advance deep-sea exploration, cutting-edge scientific research and sustainable ocean policy.”
The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution developed and engineered the original REMUS autonomous underwater vehicles and has built an AUV operations team based at WHOI that possesses the expertise to conduct REMUS 6000 expeditions anywhere in the world.
For more information:The Waitt Institute CATALYST Program
Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel
Removing fossil fuel subsidies will not reduce CO2 emissions as much as hoped
08.02.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
An international team of researchers has discovered a new anti-cancer protein. The protein, called LHPP, prevents the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells in the liver. The researchers led by Prof. Michael N. Hall from the Biozentrum, University of Basel, report in “Nature” that LHPP can also serve as a biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of liver cancer.
The incidence of liver cancer, also known as hepatocellular carcinoma, is steadily increasing. In the last twenty years, the number of cases has almost doubled...
In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.
Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...
Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.
They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...
A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...
For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.
In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...
19.03.2018 | Event News
16.03.2018 | Event News
13.03.2018 | Event News
22.03.2018 | Trade Fair News
22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences
22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences