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Research Highlights

News & Insights

Lane Abrams

Meet the Alvin 6500 Team: Lane Abrams

December 22, 2020

Lane Abrams talks about designing electronics for the bottom of the ocean and project management of Alvin’s electrical updates for the 6500 meter overhaul.

Smart cameras keep lookout for endangered whales

December 17, 2020

A ship-mounted thermal imaging system provides real-time detection of whales, which could reduce the number of endangered marine mammals killed by vessels each year.

Francis Elder testing new variable ballast pump for Alvin

Meet the Alvin 6500 Team: Francis Elder

December 16, 2020

An interview with Francis Elder, lead mechanical engineer for the Alvin Group. Find out how the team has designed a new pump to take Alvin to 6,500 meters.

Could listening to the deep sea help save it?

November 10, 2020

A recent New York Times article about sound in the deep ocean briefly mentions the work by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) acoustic scientist Ying-Tsong “YT” Lin and his work developing an “acoustic telescope.”

Wave Glider provides gateway to remote exploration

November 10, 2020

WHOI geochemist Chris German pairs an autonomous surface vehicle (ASV) called a Wave Glider with other vehicles to expand research here and on other Ocean Worlds

WHOI-assisted study finds ocean dumping of DDT waste was “sloppy”

October 29, 2020

An investigative report this week in the LA Times features the work of WHOI’s marine geochemistry lab in identifying the discarded barrels and analyzing samples from the discovery.

Can seismic data mules protect us from the next big one?

October 7, 2020

Ocean scientists leverage game-changing technologies to improve our understanding of the global ocean’s most dangerous earthquake faults and enable more advanced warnings for seismic risk.

Carl Hartsfield

REMUS Group gets new director

September 24, 2020

Former Naval Officer Carl Hartsfield becomes WHOI’s newest director of the REMUS group

acoustic telescope illustration

Transformative technology to revolutionize the way we listen to the deep ocean

August 27, 2020

Using a network of satellites and surface buoys, WHOI scientist Ying Tsong (YT) Lin and a team of engineers are creating the first 3D “acoustic telescope,” capable of listening to a range of discrete activities in the deep sea

the sea ahead

Sea Ahead

July 24, 2020

Once upon a time, ocean scientists hung up cans on up a tree on Bikini Atoll to measure wave height in the Marshall Islands during nuclear weapons testing. Today, ocean technologies and data harvesting are heading somewhere big, from swarming bots, to more autonomous submersibles, and the miniaturization of ocean sensors

News Releases

Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers Honors WHOI Scientist

December 29, 2020

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers  (IEEE) elected Dana Yoerger as a 2021 fellow for the development of autonomous underwater vehicles for deep-ocean exploration and science. Yoerger is a senior scientist in the Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering Department...

WHOI reveals upgrades to iconic submersible Alvin

December 10, 2020

One of the world’s most prolific research submersibles will put 99% of the ocean floor within reach of science community when it relaunches in 2021 Increased depth range and the ability to explore 99% of the ocean floor, including the...

OSU Assumes Cyberinfrastructure Responsibility for OOI

October 5, 2020

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and Oregon State University (OSU) jointly announced that OSU will assume responsibilities for the systems management of the cyberinfrastructure that makes data transmission for the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) possible through September of 2023.  OSU...

WHOI Announces D’Works Marine Technology Initiative for Massachusetts Startups and Entrepreneurs

August 26, 2020

Massachusetts has long been known as a center of invention and technical innovation and, more recently, has gained attention for its vibrant marine robotics startup community. Now startup companies, entrepreneurs, and others in the Commonwealth who work in the marine...

WHOI Scientists Make Woods Hole Film Festival Appearance

July 17, 2020

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists appear in two shorts and a feature film at this year’s Woods Hole Film Festival (WHFF). In addition, scientists will also participate in Q&A sessions connected to three of the festival’s feature-length, ocean-themed entries....

WHOI researcher dives to Challenger Deep

June 26, 2020

Ying-Tsong Lin is the 12th person in history and the first person of Asian descent to visit ocean’s deepest seafloor A Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution researcher became one of just a handful of people to visit the deepest part of...

Ocean explorer and filmmaker James Cameron to host virtual event on Extreme Ocean Machines

May 18, 2020

Discussion with experts on ocean technology, exploration, and storytelling On May 20, ocean explorer and world-renowned filmmaker James Cameron will host a special edition of Ocean Encounters, a popular virtual event series from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Viewers of this special event,...

What did scientists learn from Deepwater Horizon?

April 20, 2020

Paper reviews major findings, technological advances that could help in next deep-sea spill.  Ten years ago, a powerful explosion destroyed an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers and injuring 17 others. Over a span of 87...

SeaWorld & Busch Gardens conservation fund commits $900,000 to protect critically endangered North Atlantic right whales

November 14, 2019

The SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund announced that it has committed $900,000 over the next three years in the fight to save the critically endangered North Atlantic Right Whale.  The announcement was made by Dr. Michael Moore of the Woods...

Basking shark

SharkCam reveals secret lives of basking sharks in UK

August 6, 2019

Underwater footage captured by the REMUS SharkCam observing the behavior of basking sharks off the west coast of Scotland. (Credit: Amy Kukulya, @oceanrobotcam, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) An autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) known as the REMUS SharkCam has been used...

Oceanus Magazine

Mission to the Ocean Twilight Zone

Mission to the Ocean Twilight Zone

April 17, 2018

Night falls over the open ocean. The sunlit blues and greens of its mercurial surface gradually fade to gray, then darken to inky black. Hundreds of feet below, a multitude of fish, squid, plankton, and other mid-ocean dwellers begin their...

To Track an Oil Spill

To Track an Oil Spill

February 8, 2018

Oil spills are bad enough, but imagine if one occurs in an ocean covered with sea ice. The Coast Guard sends up aircraft to survey the spill and mobilizes assets in a timely way to contain damage to the environment,...

Tracking Unexploded Munitions

Tracking Unexploded Munitions

February 1, 2018

Residents of coastal North Carolina woke on Sept. 25 to what you might call an explosive surprise: Hurricane Maria, passing in the night, had churned up two ancient naval munitions from beneath the waves and flung them onto nearby beaches....

Re-envisioning Underwater Imaging

Re-envisioning Underwater Imaging

January 22, 2018

A revolutionary new underwater imaging system developed at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution can generate ultrahigh-definition television video, 2-D mosaic images, and 3-D optical models—images that scientists can spin to view from all sides and zoom in on to visually explore around...

Aqua Incognita

Aqua Incognita

December 12, 2017

There is a jar of money in the conference room of the Mooring Operations & Engineering (MOE) team at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. It is a United Nations kaleidoscope of bills and coins that MOE team members didn’t have time...

Thinking Global

Thinking Global

December 12, 2017

The Global Array component of the Ocean Observatories Initiative initially included four remote, high-latitude locations, selected for scientifically strategic reasons: Irminger Sea (60°N, 39°W) WHOI physical oceanographer Bob Pickart has called the Irminger Sea “the windiest spot on the global...

Diving for Data

Diving for Data

December 12, 2017

It’s the middle of the night on Cape Cod, Mass. Thousands of miles away in the South Atlantic off the coast of Argentina, a bright yellow torpedo-shaped drone floats up from the deep ocean and emerges at the water’s surface....

The Young Woman and the Sea

The Young Woman and the Sea

December 12, 2017

Meghan Donohue always wanted a career in oceanography. She earned an undergraduate degree in physical oceanography from the University of San Diego. Then she participated in the Sea Education Association’s semester at sea, where she discovered that what she loved...

A Pioneering Vision

A Pioneering Vision

December 12, 2017

In 2005, scientists at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution devised a revolutionary plan: They would deploy about 150 scientific instruments in coastal waters south of Martha’s Vineyard to try to understand what makes that region of the ocean teem with life—from...

Girls Just Wanna Be Engineers

Girls Just Wanna Be Engineers

June 19, 2017

“Very few women go into engineering,” said Anna Michel, “because girls just don’t get the message that they could be engineers.” Michel, a scientist in the Applied Physics and Ocean Engineering Department at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), got the...