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Schmidt Ocean Institute

Palo Alto, CA, USA •

Schmidt Ocean Institute is an international facility operator, ing and encourage exploration of the oceans.

now celebrating ? ve years of cutting-edge research that is im- SOI’s mission to accelerate the understanding of the oceans pacting and accelerating the pace of ocean technology devel- through advancing technology has led to ? ve years of cutting- opment. Its philosophy of Open Data and knowledge-sharing edge research. Supporting multidisciplinary research collabo- leads to all information gathered and scienti? c results being rations in remote and isolated parts of the ocean, we target the made available online once processed. technological, operational, and analytical gaps between tra-

Schmidt Ocean Institute believes that the latest technology is ditional oceanographic approaches. This approach has been best shared and its research expeditions return unprecedented successful and led to a host of wide-ranging breakthrough in- amounts of open-access data. As the Earth’s oceans are criti- novations demonstrated on Falkor in 2016. For example, the cally endangered and one of the least understood parts of the use of proteomics, analysis of organisms’ protein biomarkers, environment, the Institute dedicates its efforts to using tech- was utilized during a study by Dr. Mak Saito on how hypoxia nology to advance science across an intentionally broad scope in oxygen minimum zones in? uences microbial growth and of research objectives. In order to promote a comprehensive functions. understanding across oceanographic disciplines, it has host- Later in the year, Dr. Tom Kwasnitchka and his science ed more than 465 scientists since 2012, representing nearly team on Falkor imaged an entire active hydrothermal vent 138 institutions from 27 countries. It focuses on supporting ? eld with an ROV, reconstructing the data into a digital 3D projects that advance technology and surpass conventional model with sub-centimeter resolution. This digital model of- data collection methods. Marine robotics, high performance fers a holistic view of these unique deep sea ecosystems, as computing, and live streaming of Remotely Operated Vehicle well as enables their exploration and analysis in Virtual Reali- dives are just some of the ways SOI openly shares data in real ty. Another ground-breaking expedition with Dr. Oliver Wurl time – this year alone, more than 65 ROV dives were broad- and an international research team aboard Falkor investigated cast live over the internet from SOI’s global research platform, the biological, chemical, microbial, and physical processes research vessel Falkor. Other unique outreach projects that regulating heat and gas exchange through the air-sea bound- reach a worldwide audience include SOI’s Artist-at-Sea and ary. For the ? rst time, scienti? c sea surface surveys were per-

Student Opportunities programs, both of which bring non-tra- formed with a ship-deployed long endurance vertical take-off ditional specialists on board to inspire scienti? c understand- and landing (VTOL) robotic aircraft.

Schmidt Ocean Institute

Marine Technology Reporter 67

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