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Coral in Vietnam

The Big One

WHOI research assistant Justin Ossolinski snorkels over a massive coral in Vietnam—the largest of its kind in the country, according to WHOI climate scientist Konrad Hughen's colleagues at the Institute of Oceanography in Nha Trang, Vietnam. Hughen and Ossolinski visited Vietnam in 2010 to sample coral skeletons, which Hughen uses to reconstruct past climate. The skeleton composition reflects climate conditions during the coral's lifetime, and the bigger the coral, the longer its climate record. Hughen estimates this coral to be more than 450 years old, and the researchers named it "To Nhat," meaning "big one" in Vietnamese. (Photo by Konrad Hughen, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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