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Images: The New Wave of Coastal Ocean Observing

STANDING TALL—The Air-Sea Interaction Tower, built as part of an experiment sponsored by the Office of Naval Research, allows scientists to deploy instruments that monitor the relationship between winds and waves in all weather conditions. (Photo by Jayne Doucette, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

UNDERWATER POWER STRIP—The seafloor node of the Martha’s Vineyard Coastal Observatory, shown here being lowered into the water, supports experiments but it is also an experimental technology itself. Scientists plug into the node’s power supply and data cables to study everything from shifting sands to blooming plankton. (Jayne Doucette, WHOI Graphic Services. )

New robotic technologies and cutting-edge instruments—such as the plankton-observing FlowCytobot—are tested at MVCO before heading off to projects in other regions. (Tom Kleindinst, WHOI Graphic Services.)