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Research Highlights

News & Insights

The Search for Life

February 17, 2021

This week, NASA’s Perseverance Rover lands on Mars to continue the search for life on the Red Planet. At the same time, WHOI scientists and engineers are applying their experience exploring the deepest parts of planet Earth to the quest…

WHOI builds bridges with Arctic Indigenous communities

February 10, 2021

NSF program fosters collaboration between indigenous communities and traditional scientists, allowing WHOI’s autonomous vehicles to shed light on a changing Arctic

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

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

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...

PlankZooka & SUPR-REMUS

PlankZooka & SUPR-REMUS

June 1, 2017

Much of marine life begins as microscopic larvae—so tiny, delicate, and scattered in hard-to-reach parts of ocean that scientists have had a tough time illuminating this fundamental stage of life in the ocean. To see what’s out there, scientists have...

When the Hunter Became the Hunted

When the Hunter Became the Hunted

June 1, 2017

In waters off Mexico’s Guadalupe Island, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) engineers deployed the REMUS SharkCam, a torpedo-shaped robotic vehicle with a special system to track and film great white sharks in the ocean. “We wanted to test the technology...

Ancient Skeleton Discovered

Ancient Skeleton Discovered

May 1, 2017

International researchers discovered a human skeleton during ongoing excavations of a ship that sank around 65 B.C. off the Greek island of Antikythera in the Aegean Sea. It is the first skeleton from this shipwreck found in the era of...

Inside the Sunken USS Arizona

Inside the Sunken USS Arizona

May 1, 2017

Mike Skowronski (above left) pilots a remotely operated vehicle into the remains of the battleship Arizona at the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, as Evan Kovacs and Maryann Morin (right) of the Advanced Imaging & Visualization Lab (AIVL) at Woods...

Illuminating the Ocean with Sound

Illuminating the Ocean with Sound

April 26, 2017
Why Did the El Faro Sink?

Why Did the El Faro Sink?

March 3, 2017

On Oct. 1, 2015, the 790-foot cargo ship El Faro sank near the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin. All 33 crew members died in the tragedy. The ship was equipped with a voyage data recorder, or VDR, that could reveal clues...

A New Tsunami-Warning System

A New Tsunami-Warning System

January 11, 2017

After successfully testing a long-range underwater communications system that worked under Arctic Ocean ice, an engineering team at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) adapted it for a very different environment—the tropics—and for a different purpose—to provide warnings of impending tsunamis....

Communicating Under Sea Ice

Communicating Under Sea Ice

January 5, 2017

Banks Island is one of 36,563 ice-covered islands sprinkled in the Arctic Ocean north of Canada. It is home to the world’s largest population of muskoxen—about 68,000—one tiny village with a population of slightly more than 100 people, and an...

All the Ocean's a Stage

All the Ocean’s a Stage

December 28, 2016

“All right, Mr. Brickley, the show begins at two o’clock,” John Kemp announced as he entered the ship’s main lab on Saturday afternoon. Kemp is the deck operations leader for our expedition aboard Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution’s research vessel Neil...