Skip to content
For WHOI personnel and vendors: COVID-19 Guidelines

Underwater Vehicles


Arctic scientists test underwater drone on Willoughby Lake

VT Digger
REMUS

New England winters can often feel as cold as the Arctic. But for researchers from WHOI’s Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering department, Vermont’s polar-like cold proved to be the perfect testing site for Remus 600. The state’s deepest lake – Lake Willoughby – offered fewer risks than the Arctic Ocean, while providing important data about ice measurement and water temperature, helping to streamline the real mission this fall.

A Quick Dive Into How Submarines Work

NPR's Short Wave

Submarines can descend thousands of feet below the surface of the ocean, but to do so, they have to deal with an enormous amount of pressure.  NPR caught up with WHOI’s Bruce Strickrott, Group Manager and Chief Pilot of the Deep Submergence Vehicle Alvin, who explains some of the fundamental engineering principles that allow submarines to dive so deep without imploding under the pressure, and shares updates on Alvin’s overhaul and future dives.

Human Occupied Vehicle (HOV) Alvin is part of the National Deep Submergence Facility (NDSF)Alvin is one of the most recognized deep submergence vessels in the world and the only one in the U.S. capable of carrying humans into extreme ocean depths. The sub has completed 5,065 successful dives, more than all other submersible programs worldwide combined. When Alvin relaunches next fall, the iconic sub will have the ability to dive to 6500 meters (21,325 feet)—almost 4 miles deep and 2,000 meters deeper than Alvin’s current maximum depth of 4500 meters (14,800 feet). The upgrade will also give the sub access to 99% of the ocean floor.

The Oldest Crewed Deep Sea Submarine Just Got a Big Makeover

Wired

Alvin has been ashore getting a major upgrade at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, which operates the submersible on behalf of the US Navy. By the time Alvin’s makeover is wrapped up in late 2021, the storied submarine will rank among the most capable human-rated deep sea submersibles in the world.

The Water Below

Inside Unmanned Systems

Drawing on 90 years of leadership in ocean discovery and exploration, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists are engaged in an array of research projects using autonomous systems to advance their understanding of marine environments.

WHOI Reveals Upgrades to Iconic Submersible Alvin

Ocean News & Technology Magazine

Increased depth range and the ability to explore 99% of the ocean floor, including the abyssal region—one of the least understood areas of the deep sea—are just some of the upgrades underway for the iconic human-occupied Vehicle (HOV) Alvin that were unveiled today at the American Geophysical Union’s (AGU) Fall Meeting 2020.

Sea Ahead

ECO Magzine
eco magazine

The game-changing technologies that will transform our ability to understand and manage Earth’s last great frontier. Monitoring instruments—and ocean technologies in general—have come a long way. We now have Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled robots that not only allow researchers to access the most remote spots in the ocean, but can decide where to explore once they get there.

How the waters off Catalina became a DDT dumping ground …

Los Angeles Times

A scientist involved in the discovery of the Titanic happened to be on board, so he helped them program the robots on where to go and how to search for the barrels. A marine geochemistry lab at WHOI ran the samples.

Is seaweed the future of fuel?

Engineering & Technology Magazine

“Macroalgae needs to scale up to the point where it’s economically feasible for biofuel, and to do this we are going to have thousands of hectares of farms,” says Erin Fischell, an assistant scientist at WHOI.

Is seaweed the future of fuel?

Engineering & Technology Magazine

Erin Fischell, an assistant scientist at WHOI, points out: “Macroalgae needs to scale up to the point where it’s economically feasible for biofuel, and to do this we are going to have thousands of hectares of farms.”