Log Post: Communities Above and Below – Video Update

From the massive (Whale Shark!) to the tiny (Microbes!), this expedition has touched on a huge range of unique life and and processes. “Working in these remote Marine Protected Areas where we’ve been operating is an ideal scenario – it is as close as we can get to a pristine ocean.” Take a look into … Continued


Building off a groundbreaking 2017 expedition, a follow-up expedition in the Phoenix Islands Archipelago enabled the largest collection of microbial cultures from the central Pacific Ocean and the most comprehensive study of deep sea coral and sponge ecosystems in this part of the world. Video and photos available here.  HONOLULU – Marine scientists aboard Schmidt … Continued

Log Post: Local vs. Global Immunity

Ahoy and greetings from the R/V Falkor! My name is Anna Gauthier, and I am a graduate student finishing my Ph.D. at Harvard University under the mentorship of Jon Kagan (Harvard) and Randi Rotjan (Boston University). This is my second research cruise on the R/V Falkor with Schmidt Ocean Institute to the Phoenix Islands Archipelago. … Continued

Log Post: History of Deep-Sea Exploration in the Phoenix Islands

There is an old saying in science: We “all stand on the shoulder of giants,” meaning that our current work would be impossible with the breakthroughs and observations made by our predecessors. This could not be more true than in deep-sea exploration. While we have only dove on sites that human eyes have never seen … Continued

Log Post: Ocean Science and Collage Artistry – Video Update

Artist-at-Sea Constance Sartor is on Research Vessel Falkor working on two of her passions: ocean science and collage artistry. In this #PhoenixIslandsCoral video, she explains how the two are interwoven throughout her time in the high seas. 

Page: Ocean Rising

The ocean is a magnificent resource that quietly gives to all, but is rarely recognized for the role it plays in planetary and human health. In order to change this status quo, we need to inspire the public about the ocean as they are inspired by space.  How do we get the populace to consider … Continued

Log Post: Illuminating Coral Environments from Shallow to Deep

When you hear the word ‘coral’ or the phrase ‘coral reefs,’ what image comes to mind? For most people, it is a light-soaked shallow-water coral reef teeming with life. This is a scene that many of us have become familiar with, either through a first-hand experience of scuba diving or snorkeling in tropical waters or … Continued

Log Post: Searching for the Origin of Immunity – Video Update

“Corallivory” is when a creature consumes parts of a coral. Why are the researchers on R/V Falkor interested in coral predators? What can we learn about our own immune system from watching deep-sea corals react to infection? All this and much more in the newest #PhoenixIslandsCoral video update. 

Log Post: Seeing Through SuBastian’s Eyes

If you are aware of the current plastic crisis, you usually do not want to be caught sipping your beverage through a plastic straw or carrying your groceries with a plastic bag, and you definitely do not to use a styrofoam takeout container that takes an astonishing 50 years to degrade in the ocean. So … Continued