Filling the Gaps: Mapping Ellice Basin

Aboard R/V Falkor, Dr. Ken Rubin and his research team will visit one of the most active underwater volcano sites in the world, the Meta Volcano group. There they will work to obtain a detailed geological understanding of up to 12 different submarine volcanoes, attempting to do this across a suite of volcanos for the very first time.

Underwater Fire: Studying the Submarine Volcanoes of Tonga

Aboard R/V Falkor, Dr. Ken Rubin and his research team will visit one of the most active underwater volcano sites in the world, the Meta Volcano group. There they will work to obtain a detailed geological understanding of up to 12 different submarine volcanoes, attempting to do this across a suite of volcanos for the very first time.

Discovering Deep Sea Corals of the Phoenix Islands

The Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) is the largest and deepest UNESCO World Heritage Site on Earth. Approximately the size of California, PIPA was the first Marine Protected Area (MPA) of its kind. In October, Dr. Erik Cordes (Temple University) and his team will explore never seen before seamounts and atolls within PIPA with R/V Falkor and ROV SuBastian.

Unraveling Ancient Sea Level Secrets

In an innovative whole-reef approach, scientists will sail on Falkor this August and September for a 29-day expedition to reconstruct past sea levels in the Pacific. Falkor will sail along the central Hawaiian Islands and Line Islands in a two-part expedition using both an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) and Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) SuBastian.

Deep Coral Diversity at Emperor Seamount

This expedition will feature exploration of the Emperor Seamount Chain while researching biodiversity and its drivers. Using currents, mapping, and radio isotopes to track water masses – as well as genetic sampling of corals – the team will determine the driving force behind coral distribution in this region.

Exploring the Mariana Trench

The very deepest reaches of the sea are one of the planet’s last true frontiers. In November, RV Falkor sailed to the Mariana Trench with a group of biologists and geologists to conduct a new study of one of the deepest places in the world.

Deeper Views

The focus was on inspiring student participants to move toward careers in ocean science, and for those already headed that direction, to provide much needed training for future expeditions.

Leg Two, Papahānaumokuākea Monument

The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument mapping project will be spread over two legs to identify likely sites of deep-sea coral beds, manganese crust zones, and other key features.