Ultra Fine-Scale Seafloor Mapping

Expedition dates: October 25 - November 23, 2023 Seafloor mapping is integral to oceanographic research. Bathymetric data illustrate the seafloor’s depth, contours, and physical features, and it is often the first essential step in planning a successful submersible operation. The typical tool for seafloor mapping, multibeam sonar, creates three-dimensional topographical outlines—rather than visual images. Physical … Continued

Vertical Reefs of the Galápagos

Expedition dates: September 18 - October 19, 2023 The Galápagos Islands are home to a dazzling array of cold-water corals. While they are understudied compared to the shallow-water corals, a subset of these deep-dwelling animals is even more shrouded in mystery—cold-water corals living on cliffs. The depth and inaccessibility of vertical corals to ship-based sensors … Continued

Dynamics of Sinking Microplastics

Expedition dates: August 2 - August 7, 2023 Plastic pollution is pervasive in our Ocean. The most prevalent component of plastic pollution isn’t large pieces of trash floating on the surface, but tiny bits of waste called “microplastics” that are found throughout the water column. Ranging from 5 mm in diameter (a pencil eraser) down … Continued

Going with the Flow: Targeted Autonomous Drifting

There are three major issues that limit widespread and frequent seafloor imaging: cost, personnel to operate platforms, and the technical complexity of long-duration vehicles. The engineering team working on this project aim to increase researchers’ ability to gather scientifically useful seafloor imagery in coastal and shelf environments with technologies that can increase ease of use while reducing costs of acquisition.

Seeking Space Rocks

On March 7, 2018 at 8:05 PM local time, a meteorite broke up over the coast of Washington state, raining extraterrestrial rocks down into the ocean. This meteorite fall was detected by weather radars from the nationwide NEXRAD radar network, which recorded images of the falling rocks and data showing that they were composed of an unusually tough meteorite of unknown composition.

The Seeping Cascadia Margin

As the R/V Falkor transits from San Diego, California to Astoria, Oregon, Schmidt Ocean Institute will take advantage of this route, collecting valuable mapping data for unsurveyed areas over the active Cascadia Margin while hosting a unique group of Artist-at-Sea and Student Opportunities participants.

Exploring Fronts with Multiple Robots

When you build a house, you do not use only a hammer, but a variety of specialized tools in an organized and collaborative manner to construct a complex structure.

Eddy Exploration and Ecosystem Dynamics

If you have ever flown over the Pacific and looked down from the window seat, the water seems still. Viewed from this distance, the water appears stagnant with unmoving dashes of waves.