2015 News Releases
December 16, 2015
Amy Apprill, a microbiologist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), is one of the extraordinary women scientists featured in Science Magazine's online video series, "XX Files: Extraordinary Science, Extraordinary Women."
December 9, 2015
A research team studying entangled North Atlantic Right Whales has for the first time quantified the amount of drag created by towed fishing gear.
December 9, 2015
During a three-week expedition in August, an international team conducted the first scientific expedition to map and characterize the seamounts on the Galápagos platform.
December 3, 2015
Scientists monitoring the spread of radiation in the ocean from the Fukushima nuclear accident report finding an increased number of contaminated sites off the US West Coast, along with the highest detection level to date, from a sample collected about 1,600 miles west of San Francisco.
November 18, 2015
A study by U.S. and Australian researchers shows long-term warming of the Indian and Pacific oceans played an important role in increasing the severity of the devastating floods that struck Australia in 2010/2011.
November 9, 2015
The Neil Armstrong will enable the next generation of oceanographic science and discovery.
October 22, 2015
An international team of biologists has made the first-ever field observations of one of the least known species of whales in the world—Omura's whales—off the coast of Madagascar.
October 12, 2015
New research projects a doubling of surface melting of Antarctic ice shelves by 2050 and by 2100 may surpass intensities associated with ice shelf collapse, if greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel consumption continues at the present rate.
October 8, 2015
The WHOI Board of Trustees elected David B. Scully chairman of the Board; Jefferson Hughes as vice chairman of the Board; and Steven Hoch as chairman of the Corporation.
September 30, 2015
Ocean robots installed off the coast of Massachusetts have helped scientists understand a previously unknown process by which warm Gulf Stream water and colder waters of the continental shelf exchange.
September 28, 2015
Invertebrates, such as squid and jellyfish, play a crucial role in the marine food web and are also vital commercial fisheries. Despite their importance, little is known about their natural behaviors or how their environment influences those behaviors or physiology. A new data-logging tag, called the ITAG, developed specifically for small and delicate invertebrates not only quantifies ocean conditions but also measures animals’ responses to their physical environments in high resolution.
September 28, 2015
King crabs may soon become high-level predators in Antarctic marine ecosystems where they haven’t played a role in tens of millions of years, according to a new study led by Florida Institute of Technology.
September 24, 2015
Archaeologists excavating the famous ancient Greek shipwreck that yielded the Antikythera mechanism have recovered more than 50 items.
September 24, 2015
Following completion of successful acceptance trials, the nation’s newest research vessel, the Neil Armstrong, was officially turned over by the U.S. Navy on September 23 to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), which will operate the vessel as part of the national academic fleet.
September 18, 2015
Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) will honor WHOI with its Next Century award for contributions to the Massachusetts economy.
September 1, 2015
Scientists demonstrate that a key organism in the ocean’s food web will start reproducing at high speed as carbon dioxide levels rise, with no way to stop when nutrients become scarce.
August 31, 2015
Ancient rocks harbored microbial life deep below the seafloor, reports a team of scientists, confirming a long-standing hypothesis that interactions between mantle rocks and seawater can create potential for life even in hard rocks deep below the ocean floor.
August 31, 2015
A research team led by the New England Aquarium (NEAQ) and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are heading out on a 6,000-mile expedition to one of the most remote places on Earth—the Phoenix Islands in the central Pacific Ocean. Throughout the month of September and in the midst of a strengthening Pacific El Nino, researchers will investigate the combined effects of climate change and human activity on the these vast coral reef ecosystems and the diversity of life they sustain.
August 20, 2015
The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has chosen Candace Oviatt, a professor of oceanography at the University of Rhode Island (URI), as the recipient of the 2015 Bostwick H. Ketchum Award.
August 18, 2015
An international research team reports results of a three-year study of sediment samples collected offshore from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in a new paper published August 18, 2015, in the American Chemical Society's journal, Environmental Science and Technology. The research aids in understanding what happens to Fukushima contaminants after they are buried on the seafloor off coastal Japan.
August 17, 2015
Researchers and engineers have developed and tested an innovative new system for sampling small planktonic larvae in coastal ocean waters and understanding their distribution.
August 13, 2015
The build-up and subsequent release of warm, stagnant water from the deep Arctic Ocean and Nordic Seas played a role in ending the last Ice Age within the Arctic region, according to new research led by an international team of scientists.
August 11, 2015
Scientists have tested a surprisingly cheap and effective way to assess the health of vulnerable coral reefs and to monitor threats on remote atolls: eavesdropping.
August 5, 2015
As temperatures rise, some of the carbon dioxide stored in Arctic permafrost meets an unexpected fate—burial at sea. As many as 2.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year are swept along by a single river system into Arctic Ocean sediment, according to a new study.
August 2, 2015
Shifts in trade winds and ocean currents powered a resurgence of endangered Galapagos Penguins over the past 30 years, according to a new study. These changes enlarged a cold pool of water the penguins rely on for food and breeding—an expansion that could continue as the climate changes over the coming decades, according to a new study led by researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).
July 31, 2015
A research team has successfully demonstrated a new non-invasive tool to obtain hard-to-get health measurements of large endangered whales in the wild.
July 29, 2015
John W. Farrington of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has been elected a fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU). Farrington, dean emeritus and an emeritus member in the Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry Department, is among 60 new fellows who will be honored for "exceptional scientific contributions and attained acknowledged eminence in the fields of Earth and space sciences."
July 17, 2015
Scientists have successfully conducted the first high-volume collection of plankton, including animal larvae, from the deep ocean using a new sampling device mounted on a robotic submarine.
July 16, 2015
The waters off Greece’s Santorini are the site of newly discovered opalescent pools forming at 250 meters depth. The interconnected series of meandering, iridescent white pools contain high concentrations of CO2 and may hold answers to questions related to deepsea carbon storage as well as provide a means of monitoring the volcano for future eruptions.
July 13, 2015
A new study has found a connection between climate and airline flight times, suggesting a feedback loop could exist between the carbon emissions of airplanes and our changing climate.
July 9, 2015
Seven writers and multimedia science journalists from the U.S. have been selected to participate in the competitive WHOI Ocean Science Journalism Fellowship program, September 13-18, 2015.
July 8, 2015
New research proves that the dissolved metals from hydrothermal plumes follow deep-sea currents to provide a major source of iron to the world's oceans.
July 7, 2015
WHOI scientists and colleagues from the Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate in Norway collected nearly 30,000 high definition images at known methane release sites in the Arctic Ocean. The detailed images will provide new insights into the most remote areas of natural methane releases in the world.
July 7, 2015
Sound fiscal management practices and commitment to accountability and transparency have earned WHOI a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator.
June 30, 2015
Mark Abbott has been named WHOI's tenth president and director. Abbott will assume the office October 1, 2015, succeeding Susan Avery, who served from 2008 to 2015.
June 25, 2015
NOAA researchers and colleagues from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) have reported what appears to be a banner year for young sea scallops off the Delmarva Peninsula in mid-Atlantic waters of the U.S.
June 24, 2015
WHOI assistant scientist Anna Michel was chosen by the National Academy of Sciences to receive a 2015 Gulf Research Program Early-Career Research Fellowship.
June 11, 2015
Water temperatures along the continental shelf off New Jersey have experienced unprecedented warming over the last 13 years.
June 8, 2015
A new study is the first to show that methane formation does not occur during the relatively quick fluid circulation process.
June 5, 2015
As the ocean absorbs atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) released by the burning of fossil fuels, its chemistry is changing, lowering its pH in a process known as ocean acidification. This process also removes carbonate ions, an essential ingredient needed by corals and other organisms to build their skeletons and shells.
June 4, 2015
Dr. John Holdren, President Obama’s science advisor, will present the commencement address at this year’s graduation ceremonies of the MIT/WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography/Applied Ocean Science and Engineering.
June 3, 2015
Scientists have found a surprising mechanism that triggers the abrupt draining of glacial lakes atop the Greenland Ice Sheet.
May 26, 2015
WHOI scientists Daniel Fornari and Timothy Shank and their colleagues Jeff Karson (Syracuse Univ.), Deborah Kelley (U. Washington) and Michael Perfit (U. Florida) bring their deep-sea explorations to the public with an extraordinary new book, “Discovering the Deep: A Photographic Atlas of the Sea-Floor and Ocean Crust.
May 18, 2015
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has selected Hyodae Seo, an associate scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), to receive a 2015 Young Investigator Award from the U.S. Navy.
May 14, 2015
Phosphorus is one of the most common substances on Earth. An essential nutrient for every living organism—humans require approximately 700 milligrams per day—we are rarely concerned about consuming enough of it because it is present in most of the foods we eat. Despite its ubiquity and living organisms' utter dependence on it, we know surprisingly little about how it moves, or cycles, through the ocean environment.
May 13, 2015
Scientists from WHOI calculated the first direct estimate of how much and in what form organic carbon is exported to the ocean by rivers.
May 11, 2015
New England’s spring and summer red tides will be similar in extent to those of the past three years, according to the 2015 Gulf of Maine red tide seasonal forecast.
May 6, 2015
Good management has brought the $559 million United States sea scallop fishery back from the brink of collapse over the past 20 years. However, its current fishery management plan does not account for longer-term environmental change like ocean warming and acidification that may affect the fishery in the future. A group of researchers from WHOI, NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service, and Ocean Conservancy hope to change that.
April 27, 2015
Scientists have discovered a surprising new short-circuit to the biological pump. Sinking particles of stressed and dying phytoplankton release chemicals that can have a jolting, steroid-like effect on marine bacteria feeding on the particles.
April 13, 2015
Diversity of life abounds on Earth, and there's no need to look any farther than the ocean's surface for proof. There are over 200,000 species of phytoplankton alone, and all of those species of microscopic marine plants that form the base of the marine food web need the same basic resources to grow—light and nutrients.
April 6, 2015
Scientists at WHOI have for the first time detected the presence of small amounts of radioactivity from the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident in a seawater sample from the shoreline of North America.
April 1, 2015
The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation has awarded the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) a $150,000 grant that will help fund a three-year collaborative project with Cape Abilities—a nonprofit organization dedicated to finding good jobs for Cape Cod residents with disabilities.
March 26, 2015
Just as crocus and daffodil blossoms signal renewal and the start of a warmer season on land, a similar "greening" event—a massive phytoplankton bloom—unfolds each spring in the Atlantic Ocean from Bermuda to the Arctic. But, what happens to all that organic material produced in the surface ocean?
March 25, 2015
Cyndy Chandler, an Information Systems Specialist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), has been elected to serve a two-year term as co-chair of the International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE). Established in 1961, the IODE is part of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO.
March 10, 2015
The submersible Alvin has achieved certification from the U. S. Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) for operations to its rated depth of 4,500 meters (approx. 2.8 miles).
March 2, 2015
On the fourth anniversary of the disaster, WHOI and the Aquarium of the Pacific debut a new program about ocean radioactivity motivated by the Fukushima nuclear accident.
February 24, 2015
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Assistant Scientist Neel Aluru has received an Outstanding New Environmental Scientist award from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
February 11, 2015
A new study of prehistoric hurricanes shows the intensity and frequency of hurricanes the U.S. could experience could intensify as ocean temperatures increase with climate change.
February 5, 2015
Thirteen scientists from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are featured in the new publication "Women in Oceanography: A Decade Later," which reviews the progress made over the last 10 years in addressing barriers to career advancement for female oceanographers.
February 2, 2015
In a study published this week in Nature Geoscience, a team of researchers provides new insight into the behavior of the African monsoon at the end of the African Humid Period and the factors that caused it to collapse.
February 2, 2015
A new study led by scientists at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) points to the deep ocean as a major source of dissolved iron in the central Pacific Ocean.
January 26, 2015
A common algae commercially grown to make fish food holds promise as a source for both biodiesel and jet fuel, according to a new study published in the journal Energy & Fuels.
January 7, 2015
A new study shows exposing corals to added nutrients increases their erosion and dissolution rate tenfold.