WHOI Waypoints: WHOI Collaborates on Museum Exhibit


A new museum exhibit on the deep sea—highlighting many of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution’s discoveries and exploration vehicles—made its national debut Sept. 9 at the Museum of Science in Boston. The exhibit—“Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss”—is scheduled to travel to science centers and museums nationwide over the next five years.

 The exhibit introduces visitors to the tools and technology used to explore the deep sea, including WHOI’s three-person submersible Alvin, its remotely operated vehicle Jason, and its Autonomous Benthic Explorer ABE.

“Extreme Deep” also examines explorations of shipwrecks, as well as life in the depths—starting with spectacular images of beautiful, ethereal jellies that inhabit the water column and culminating in a life-size, three-dimensional replica of the exotic life that dwells around seafloor hydrothermal vents.
“Extreme Deep” was developed by BBH Exhibits Inc., of San Antonio, in collaboration with WHOI. It is sponsored nationally by John Hancock Financial Services and the Discovery Channel, and locally by Benthos Inc., a Falmouth maker of oceanographic equipment.

“This exhibit is a wonderful opportunity for WHOI to share the excitement of exploration and the importance of the oceans to our future,” said WHOI Director Bob Gagosian. “As a world-class center for oceanographic and engineering research, we are proud to show some of the technology we have developed and the science we undertake to understand how our planet works. The deep sea is largely unexplored, and much remains to be discovered. We hope young people will share our enthusiasm for exploration and take a new interest in learning about the oceans.”

The exhibit will remain in Boston through Jan. 7, 2000, when it moves on to the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.