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Deep Ocean Exploration Institute Fellows

Institute Fellows are selected based on their scientific leadership, their interest and ability to participate in interdisciplinary research, and their ability and willingness to communicate the importance of the Institute's research to the public and policy makers in government.


Current Fellow: John "Chip" Breier

Fellow Term:  September '11 - August '14
John “Chip” Breier, an assistant scientist in Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering, is a geochemist and ocean engineer. He uses samples collected from the rising plumes of deep-sea hydrothermal vents to understand the transfer of material and chemical energy between the earth’s crust and the ocean. Chip will use his fellowship to develop global scale estimates and models of these interactions based on our current understanding. In addition, in an effort to fill the major knowledge gaps still remaining in this area of research, he will organize a community effort to undertake large flux studies at the vent-field scale – the scale over which fluxes must be integrated to allow for extrapolation to the global ocean.

Previous Deep Ocean Exploration Institute Fellows

Mark Behn

Fellow Term: May '10 - April '13
Mark Behn is an associate scientist in the department of Geology and Geophysics. He uses geodynamic models to quantify the behavior of tectonic and magmatic systems in marine and terrestrial environments. As a fellow, he plans to study Earth's deep water cycle.  While we typically think of the oceans as the largest reservoir for water on Earth, hydrous minerals have the potential to store a far larger volume of water in the deep mantle. Mark will work to develop models for the flux of water into and out of the Earth's mantle.

Jeff McGuire

Jeff McGuire

Fellow Term: May '08 - April '11

Jeff McGuire is an associate scientist in the department of Geology and Geophysics. He uses recordings of the seismic waves and permanent ground deformation produced by earthquakes to improve our understanding of the rupture process and fault structure. As a fellow he worked to develop a real-time earthquake early warning system for the Pacific Northwest. The Cascadia subduction zone is expected to generate magnitude 8-9 quakes offshore, but it does not yet have a network of seafloor instruments for detecting the beginnings of such ruptures and relaying the information to land.

Tim Shank

Tim Shank

Fellow Term: June '07 - May '10

Tim Shank is an associate scientist in the Biology Department. He combines multiple molecular genetic approaches and ecological field studies to understand the conditions and adaptations that allow various species to migrate, evolve, and thrive in deep-sea habitats, including chemosynthetic, seamount and cold-water coral ecosystems. As a fellow, he examined the genetic basis of novel chemosynthetic adaptations, including their ecological and economical impacts, through gene discovery and gene-expression profiling.

Maurice Tivey

Maurice Tivey

Fellow Term: June '07 - May '10

Maurice Tivey is a senior scientist in the department of Geology and Geophysics.  His work on magnetic imaging of the subsurface structure of hydrothermal systems has recently attracted the attention of the industrial sector, in particular the fledgling industry of marine mining. As a DOEI Fellow, he pursued several opportunities that have both a direct impact on his own reseach and will help him develop an industrial partnership for external funding that could potentionally benefit many other colleagues at the institution as well.

Wenlu Zhu

Wenlu Zhu

Fellow Term: June '06 - May '09

Wenlu Zhu was an associate scientist in the department of Geology and Geophysics. She used laboratory experiments, microstructural analysis and computer modeling to understand fluid transport processes in the Earth’s crust and mantle. Her research on fluid flow in porous media has broad interdisciplinary applications. Wenlu used her fellowship to study how fluid flow in porous sedimentary rocks affects fault strength and earthquake generation at active margins. 

Stan Hart

Stan Hart

Fellow Term: April '04 - March '07

Stan Hart is a scientist emeriitus in the department of Gology and Geophysics. He uses the geochemistry of magma erupted from oceanic volcanoes as a window into Earth's deeper regions.   His research ranges from understanding the dynamics and evolution of the earth, to study of how submarine volcanism interacts with the oceans, and how it controls ocean chemistry. As a fellow, he invoked a broad multi-disciplinary study of the active Samoan submarine volcano, Vailulu`u, involving investigators from around the globe.

Wolfgang Bach

Wolfgang Bach

Fellow Term: April '03 - March '06

Wolfgang Bach was an adjunct scientist in the department of Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry.  He is interested in the relations between geochemical and microbiological processes occurring within oceanic crustal and mantle rocks. He used his fellowship to investigate the non-biological synthesis of organic compounds in seafloor hydrothermal systems, and organized a very successful workshop that discussed different approaches (experimental, molecular, and observational) to studies of the marine subsurface biosphere.

Greg Hirth

Greg Hirth

Fellow Term: April '03 - March '06

Greg Hirth was a scientist in the department of Geology and Geophysics. He used his understanding of the physical properties of rocks to study earth's processes, ranging from melt migration to hydrothermal alteration to oceanic earthquakes. As a Fellow, he investigated interactions between cracking in the oceanic crust and biogeochemical processes.

Jean Whelan

Jean Whelan

Fellow Term: June '01 - May '04

Jean Whelan is an oceanographer emeritus in the department of Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry. She developed chemical sensors to detect and measure the properties of fluids such as gas and oil that are naturally venting along the US continental margins.

Dana Yoerger

Dana Yoerger

Fellow Term: June '01 - May '04

Dana Yoerger is a senior scientist in the department of Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering. He develops deep submergence vehicles that provide access to the deep ocean and seafloor.  He is working toward matching the capabilities of remotely operated and autonomous underwater vehicles with the needs of scientists who plan to use seafloor observatories.

Meg Tivey

Meg Tivey

Fellow Term: June '01 - May '04

Meg Tivey is a senior scientist in the department of Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry. She has been involved in national observatory efforts at hydrothermal vents for several years. She used her fellowship to create a cross-departmental, interdisciplinary group of WHOI scientists and engineers to stimulate interchange of ideas and examine potential crossover of approaches and instrumentation for observatories in different marine environments.