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Featured Researcher: Ken Buesseler


Chasing Ocean ‘Snowflakes’

Chasing Ocean ‘Snowflakes’

Scientists envision putting a flotilla of devices in the ocean to act as “eyes” that can track the “marine snow” that drifts down into the ocean.

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Mission to the Ocean Twilight Zone

Mission to the Ocean Twilight Zone

The twilight zone is a part of the ocean 660 to 3,300 feet below the surface, where little sunlight can reach. It is deep and dark and cold, and the pressures there are enormous. Despite these challenging conditions, the twilight zone teems with life that helps support the ocean’s food web and is intertwined with Earth’s climate. Some countries are gearing up to exploit twilight zone fisheries, with unknown impacts for marine ecosystems and global climate. Scientists and engineers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution are poised to explore and investigate this hidden frontier.

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Back to Bikini

Back to Bikini

WHOI scientists returned to the Pacific islands of Bikini and Enewetak in 2015 to study radioactive contamination nearly 70 years after the U.S. used the islands for nuclear weapons testing. What they learned could also be applied to a more recent nuclear disaster: the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi reactor meltdown in Japan.

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Radioactivity Under the Beach?

Radioactivity Under the Beach?

Scientists have found a previously unsuspected place where radioactive material from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant disaster has accumulated—in sands and brackish groundwater beneath beaches up to 60 miles away.

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Radiation Health Risks

Radiation Health Risks

The ability to gauge radiation at vanishingly low concentrations gives scientists a powerful tool for understanding ocean processes. “We can…

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Radioisotopes in the Ocean

Radioisotopes in the Ocean

» 日本語版 The release of radioisotopes from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in March 2011 amounts to the largest-ever…

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ABCs of Radioactivity

ABCs of Radioactivity

» 日本語版 To the average layperson, “radioactivity” is a harsh and scary word. But the fact is that radioisotopes, both…

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To Fertilize, or Not to Fertilize

To Fertilize, or Not to Fertilize

Global warming is “unequivocal,” the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported in November 2007. Human actions—particularly the burning of…

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Swimming in the Rain

Swimming in the Rain

Twilight zones, witch hunts, and crossbows usually don’t find their way into tales about new oceanographic instruments. This story isn’t…

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