On December 10, 2020, the NOAA Ocean Exploration Advisory Board (OEAB) will hold its 18th meeting. With the June 2020 release of the National Strategy for Mapping, Exploring, and Characterizing the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone, ocean exploration is in the spotlight. During the December meeting, the OEAB will make recommendations to the administration for advancing ocean exploration over the next 6-12 months. It will do so with five new members on board.
The NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration (OER) has released the NOAA OER Deepwater Exploration Mapping Procedures Manual to describe the office’s approach to deepwater ocean exploration acoustic mapping. OER is sharing this manual as a contribution to broader cross-agency efforts to develop standard ocean mapping protocols and to serve as a guide for other interested public and private entities conducting deepwater mapping and exploration.
Barely had the ink dried on the partnership agreement signed by NOAA and ocean explorer Victor Vescovo, owner of Caladan Oceanic LLC, when his team headed out to the Pacific Ocean to dive and map the Mariana Trench, and answer the questions -- how deep and where exactly is the bottom of the ocean.
NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer will begin two months of dives using unmanned remotely operated vehicles, or ROVs, to explore marine protected areas in the central Pacific Ocean. Starting on Aug. 1, anyone with an internet connection can virtually explore the deep sea with scientists and researchers from their computer or mobile device.
Testing new scientific technology is a risky business. In the case of two Saildrones released in the eastern Bering Sea over a month ago, the risk has led to big rewards. Equipped with a suite of scientific sensors, the unmanned surface vehicles are performing beyond researchers’ expectations during their first test run in cold waters. Each Saildrone has collected over 40 million measurements over the course of the planned 2.5 month test mission.
Using undersea robots, satellites and high-speed Internet to send live video from the seafloor to audiences ashore, a team of NOAA-led marine archeologists discovered a ship’s chronometer where time has stood still for about 200 years at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico.
From April 12-30, members of the public are invited to join NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer as it explores deep-sea habitats in the Gulf of Mexico. “Virtual ocean explorers” will have the chance to see canyons, deep-sea coral communities, and shipwrecks dating to the early 1800s via live video transmitted from the deep seafloor.
Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - or "NOAA Research" - provides the research foundation for understanding the complex systems that support our planet. Working in partnership with other organizational units of the NOAA, a bureau of the Department of Commerce, NOAA Research enables better forecasts, earlier warnings for natural disasters, and a greater understanding of the Earth. Our role is to provide unbiased science to better manage the environment, nationally, and globally.