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Dave Fratantoni watches from ship as glider starts its mission

Test Driving a Glider

WHOI physical oceanographer Dave Fratantoni watches as a Slocum glider heads away from the ship during a test run. The glider operates without a tether and moves up and down through the water by changing its buoyancy. On this research cruise, Fratantoni and colleagues in the Autonomous Systems Laboratory used several kinds of instruments, some mounted on the glider, to detect whales and the zooplankton they prey on and to measure physical characteristics of the marine environment. The orange float attached to the glider during the test run was removed before the glider set off on its three-week mission. (Photo by Nick Woods, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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