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Robots and Red Tide

Robots and Red Tide

November 28, 2016

Nauset Marsh on Cape Cod occasionally develops harmful algal blooms (HABs) that can shut down shellfishing. To better understand how blooms spread, WHOI biologists Taylor Crockford, Heidi Sosik and Rob Olson combine an Imaging FlowCytobot (IFCB), a robotic instrument that photographs algae cells, with other autonomous platforms. In April, Crockford, and (in the boat) visiting investigator Mike Brosnahan, scientist Peter Traykovski, and engineer Kevin Manganini field-tested the a JetYak autonomous kayak (yellow dot in the left background) equipped with an IFCB. The JetYak traversed the shallows while the IFCB imaged algae cells. These data compliment a continuous image series from another IFCB on a raft (center background). (Photo by Taylor Crockford, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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