Latest News from: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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Newswise: Northern Star Coral Study Could Help Protect Tropical Corals: Rhode Island Considers Naming the Local Coral as a State Emblem
Released: 13-Apr-2021 1:15 PM EDT
Northern Star Coral Study Could Help Protect Tropical Corals: Rhode Island Considers Naming the Local Coral as a State Emblem
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

As the Rhode Island legislature considers designating the Northern Star Coral an official state emblem, researchers are finding that studying this local creature’s recovery from a laboratory-induced stressor could help better understand how to protect endangered tropical corals.

Released: 7-Apr-2021 2:20 PM EDT
WHOI and NOAA Release Report on U.S. Socio-economic Effects of Harmful Algal Blooms
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) occur in all 50 U.S. states and many produce toxins that cause illness or death in humans and commercially important species. However, attempts to place a more exact dollar value on the full range of these impacts often vary widely in their methods and level of detail, which hinders understanding of the scale of their socio-economic effects.

Newswise: WHOI and NOAA Fisheries Release New North Atlantic Right Whale Health Assessment Review
Released: 25-Feb-2021 9:35 AM EST
WHOI and NOAA Fisheries Release New North Atlantic Right Whale Health Assessment Review
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

North Atlantic right whales are critically endangered and declining. Climate change, vessel strikes, entanglements and noise engender poor health and reproductive failure, and are major threats to individuals and the species. Trauma reduction measures and applying new tools to assess and enhance their health, are critically important.

Newswise: New observation network will provide unprecedented, long-term view of life in the ocean twilight zone
Released: 8-Feb-2021 3:30 PM EST
New observation network will provide unprecedented, long-term view of life in the ocean twilight zone
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new observation network under development by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) will offer round-the-clock data about the ocean twilight zone - a dimly lit region roughly 200–1000 meters (650–3200 feet) below the surface, containing the largest amount of fish biomass on Earth. Encompassing 250,000 square kilometers (roughly 155,300 square miles) of the northwest Atlantic Ocean, the new network will offer unprecedented insight into this little-known, yet vitally important region of the sea, an area largely unexplored by scientists.

Newswise: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution reveals upgrades to human occupied vehicle Alvin submarine
9-Dec-2020 1:40 PM EST
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution reveals upgrades to human occupied vehicle Alvin submarine
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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.

Newswise: Study reconstructs ancient storms to help predict changes in tropical cyclone hotspot
12-Nov-2020 4:30 PM EST
Study reconstructs ancient storms to help predict changes in tropical cyclone hotspot
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

New research from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) published in Nature Geoscience reveals that tropical cyclones were actually more frequent in the southern Marshall Islands during the Little Ice Age, when temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere were cooler than they are today. This means that changes in atmospheric circulation, driven by differential ocean warming, heavily influence the location and intensity of tropical cyclones.

Newswise: Hunger in the Arctic prompts focus on causes, not symptoms
Released: 12-Nov-2020 8:05 AM EST
Hunger in the Arctic prompts focus on causes, not symptoms
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The communities of Nunatsiavut in Northern Labrador, Canada, similar to other communities across Inuit Nunangat, the homeland of Inuit, are plagued by excessive food insecurity rates, which are estimated to be five times the level of food insecurity measured for households in Canada.

Newswise: First Detailed Oil Sample Analysis Completed from Mauritius Oil Spill
Released: 29-Oct-2020 3:30 PM EDT
First Detailed Oil Sample Analysis Completed from Mauritius Oil Spill
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The first ultra-high-resolution analysis of an oil sample from Mauritius shows that the material is a complex and unusual mix of hydrocarbons—and even though some of the components in it may have already degraded or evaporated, what remains still gives it the ability to persist in the environment.

Newswise: Study Sheds Light on Critically Endangered Beluga Whale Population
Released: 29-Oct-2020 8:40 AM EDT
Study Sheds Light on Critically Endangered Beluga Whale Population
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A study recently published in Animal Microbiome outlines important first steps in understanding epidermal microbial communities in beluga whales, as well as their role in beluga health.

Newswise: Epic Arctic Mission Ends
12-Oct-2020 12:00 PM EDT
Epic Arctic Mission Ends
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The German icebreaker Polarstern returned home after being frozen near the top of the world as part of the Multidisciplinary Drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate, or MOSAiC program, to study all aspects of the Arctic system.

Newswise: WHOI receives NOAA awards to study, predict harmful algal blooms
Released: 6-Oct-2020 4:30 PM EDT
WHOI receives NOAA awards to study, predict harmful algal blooms
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Researchers WHOI were recently named in a list of 17 new research projects funded by the NOAA to improve the nation’s collective response to the growing problem of harmful algal blooms.

Newswise: WHOI-NOAA partnership tackles critical gap in climate knowledge
Released: 6-Oct-2020 4:30 PM EDT
WHOI-NOAA partnership tackles critical gap in climate knowledge
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Researchers at WHOI were recently awarded a $500,000 grant from the NOAA Climate Observations and Monitoring program to develop machine learning tools to improve estimates of air-sea heat exchange in the Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.

Newswise: OSU Assumes Cyberinfrastructure Responsibility for OOI
Released: 5-Oct-2020 11:55 AM EDT
OSU Assumes Cyberinfrastructure Responsibility for OOI
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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.

Newswise: Antarctic Ice Loss Expected to Affect Future Climate Change
22-Sep-2020 10:45 AM EDT
Antarctic Ice Loss Expected to Affect Future Climate Change
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

In a new climate modeling study that looked at the impacts of accelerated ice melt from the Antarctic Ice Sheet (AIS) on future climate, a team of climate scientists reports that future ice-sheet melt is expected to have significant effects on global climate.

Newswise: Studies investigate marine heatwaves, shifting ocean currents
Released: 21-Sep-2020 8:45 AM EDT
Studies investigate marine heatwaves, shifting ocean currents
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Two new studies from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) investigate marine heatwaves and currents at the edge of the continental shelf, which impact regional ocean circulation and marine life.

Newswise: The $500 billion question: what’s the value of studying the ocean’s biological carbon pump?
Released: 10-Sep-2020 1:15 PM EDT
The $500 billion question: what’s the value of studying the ocean’s biological carbon pump?
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new study puts an economic value on the benefit of research to improve knowledge of the biological carbon pump and reduce the uncertainty of ocean carbon sequestration estimates.

Newswise: As Hurricane Laura raged, silent sentinels kept watch from below
Released: 28-Aug-2020 11:40 AM EDT
As Hurricane Laura raged, silent sentinels kept watch from below
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Far below Hurricane Laura’s fury in the churning Gulf of Mexico, an array of underwater instruments have been taking the temperature of the ocean to measure the water’s heat content—a key factor that drives the intensity of hurricanes as they suck heat out of the ocean.

Newswise: Ocean acidification causing coral ‘osteoporosis' on iconic reefs
Released: 27-Aug-2020 11:05 AM EDT
Ocean acidification causing coral ‘osteoporosis' on iconic reefs
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Scientists have long suspected that ocean acidification is affecting corals’ ability to build their skeletons, but it has been challenging to isolate its effect from that of simultaneous warming ocean temperatures, which also influence coral growth. New research from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) reveals the distinct impact that ocean acidification is having on coral growth on some of the world’s iconic reefs.

Newswise: WHOI Announces D’Works Marine Technology Initiative for Massachusetts Startups and Entrepreneurs
Released: 26-Aug-2020 10:30 AM EDT
WHOI Announces D’Works Marine Technology Initiative for Massachusetts Startups and Entrepreneurs
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech) are teaming up to make WHOI’s unique mix of resources available through the D’Works Marine Technology Initiative to accelerate the pace of marine technology innovation.

Newswise: Florida Current is Weaker Now Than at Any Point in the Past Century
Released: 7-Aug-2020 10:50 AM EDT
Florida Current is Weaker Now Than at Any Point in the Past Century
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A key component of the Gulf Stream has markedly slowed over the past century—that’s the conclusion of a new research paper in Nature Communications published on August 7.

Newswise: New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in  ocean
6-Aug-2020 2:00 PM EDT
New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in ocean
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Ten years after the Tohoku-oki earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant, radiation levels have fallen in all but the waters closest to the plant. But a new hazard exists and is growing every day in the number of storage tanks on land surrounding the power plant that hold contaminated wastewater.

Newswise: WHOI receives $2.7M from Simons Foundation to study nutrients, microbes that fuel ocean food web
Released: 27-Jul-2020 8:35 AM EDT
WHOI receives $2.7M from Simons Foundation to study nutrients, microbes that fuel ocean food web
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The Simons Foundation has awarded Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) two grants totaling $2.7 million to study key processes that help fuel the health of our ocean and planet.

Newswise: WHOI names Peter de Menocal President and Director
Released: 20-Jul-2020 3:30 PM EDT
WHOI names Peter de Menocal President and Director
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) today announced that Dr. Peter de Menocal has been named the eleventh President and Director of the Institution. De Menocal is a marine geologist and paleo-oceanographer who studies deep-sea sediments as archives of past climate change, illuminating centuries of climate history and ocean circulation patterns in the geological record and drawing connections to the human dimensions of climate change today

Newswise: WHOI Scientists, Staff, and Students Make Woods Hole Film Festival Appearance
Released: 17-Jul-2020 10:40 AM EDT
WHOI Scientists, Staff, and Students Make Woods Hole Film Festival Appearance
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) scientists are featured in two short films 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.

Newswise: WHOI Researcher Dives to Challenger Deep
Released: 26-Jun-2020 12:25 PM EDT
WHOI Researcher Dives to Challenger Deep
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution researcher became one of just a handful of people to visit the deepest part of the ocean following a successful dive in the deep-submergence vehicle Limiting Factor on Monday.

Newswise: The many lifetimes of plastics
Released: 15-Jun-2020 12:05 PM EDT
The many lifetimes of plastics
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Many of us have seen informational posters at parks or aquariums specifying how long plastics bags, bottles, and other products last in the environment. They’re a good reminder to not litter, but where does the information on the lifetime expectancy of plastic goods come from, and how reliable is it?

Newswise: Expedition to Service Pioneer Array Departing Woods Hole, Sunday 7 June
Released: 5-Jun-2020 1:00 PM EDT
Expedition to Service Pioneer Array Departing Woods Hole, Sunday 7 June
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

After weeks of preparation, isolation, and testing, a science team will depart on the R/V Neil Armstrong from Woods Hole, MA for an 11-day expedition.

Newswise: Are natural toxins in fish harmful?
Released: 2-Jun-2020 7:05 AM EDT
Are natural toxins in fish harmful?
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Researchers investigate ‘PCB-like’ chemicals made by Mother Nature

Newswise: Lab shutdowns enable speedier investigation of coral disease
Released: 29-May-2020 8:00 AM EDT
Lab shutdowns enable speedier investigation of coral disease
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Research labs have shut down around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that hasn’t stopped scientists from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) from investigating critical problems in the ocean.

Newswise:Video Embedded fishing-less-could-be-a-win-for-both-lobstermen-and-endangered-whales
VIDEO
Released: 27-May-2020 10:35 AM EDT
Fishing less could be a win for both lobstermen and endangered whales
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new study by researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) found that New England’s historic lobster fishery may turn a higher profit by operating with less gear in the water and a shorter season.

Newswise: Ocean explorer and filmmaker James Cameron to host virtual event on Extreme Ocean Machines
Released: 15-May-2020 10:05 AM EDT
Ocean explorer and filmmaker James Cameron to host virtual event on Extreme Ocean Machines
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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.

Newswise: North Atlantic right whales are in much poorer condition than Southern right whale
Released: 23-Apr-2020 11:05 AM EDT
North Atlantic right whales are in much poorer condition than Southern right whale
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

New research by an international team of scientists reveals that endangered North Atlantic right whales are in much poorer body condition than their counterparts in the southern hemisphere.

Newswise:Video Embedded what-did-scientists-learn-from-deepwater-horizon
VIDEO
20-Apr-2020 8:30 AM EDT
What did scientists learn from Deepwater Horizon?
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

In a review paper published in the journal Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, WHOI marine geochemists Elizabeth Kujawinski and Christopher Reddy review what they— and their science colleagues from around the world—have learned from studying the spill over the past decade.

Newswise:Video Embedded new-geochemical-tool-reveals-origin-of-earth-s-nitrogen
VIDEO
Released: 15-Apr-2020 6:00 PM EDT
New geochemical tool reveals origin of Earth’s nitrogen
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and their colleagues used a new geochemical tool to shed light on the origin of nitrogen and other volatile elements on Earth, which may also prove useful as a way to monitor the activity of volcanoes. Their findings were published April 16, 2020, in the journal Nature.

Newswise:Video Embedded a-rapidly-changing-arctic
VIDEO
7-Apr-2020 2:10 PM EDT
A Rapidly Changing Arctic
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new study by researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and their international colleagues found that freshwater runoff from rivers and continental shelf sediments are bringing significant quantities of carbon and trace elements into parts of the Arctic Ocean via the Transpolar Drift—a major surface current that moves water from Siberia across the North Pole to the North Atlantic Ocean.

Newswise:Video Embedded ocean-s-biological-pump-captures-more-carbon-than-expected
VIDEO
2-Apr-2020 3:00 PM EDT
Ocean’s ‘biological pump’ captures more carbon than expected
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Scientists have long known that the ocean plays an essential role in capturing carbon from the atmosphere, but a new study from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) shows that the efficiency of the ocean’s “biological carbon pump” has been drastically underestimated, with implications for future climate assessments.

Newswise: $8.3M award to WHOI extends observational record of critical climate research
Released: 18-Mar-2020 1:50 PM EDT
$8.3M award to WHOI extends observational record of critical climate research
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently awarded $8.2 million to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) to extend the life of the Overturning in the Sub-polar North Atlantic Program (OSNAP) in a key part of Earth’s ocean-climate system. The award is part of a $15.5 million grant to four U.S. institutions that will help add four years to the record being assembled by the observatory.

Newswise: Microbes far beneath the seafloor rely on recycling to survive
6-Mar-2020 8:00 AM EST
Microbes far beneath the seafloor rely on recycling to survive
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Scientists from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution reveal how microorganisms could survive in rocks nestled thousands of feet beneath the ocean floor in the lower oceanic crust.

Newswise: Indian Ocean phenomenon spells climate trouble for Australia
Released: 10-Mar-2020 10:50 AM EDT
Indian Ocean phenomenon spells climate trouble for Australia
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

New international research by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and colleagues has found a marked change in the Indian Ocean’s surface temperatures that puts southeast Australia on course for increasingly hot and dry conditions.

Newswise: Study reveals rapid sea-level rise along U.S. Atlantic coast in 18th century
Released: 4-Mar-2020 1:30 PM EST
Study reveals rapid sea-level rise along U.S. Atlantic coast in 18th century
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new study reveals that during the 18th century, sea levels along a stretch of the Atlantic coast of North America were rising almost as fast as they were during the 20th Century.

Newswise:Video Embedded study-reveals-missoula-floods-impact-on-past-abrupt-climate-changes
VIDEO
Released: 28-Feb-2020 1:20 PM EST
Study reveals Missoula Floods impact on past abrupt climate changes
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new study shows for the first time how massive flood events in the eastern North Pacific Ocean—known as the Missoula Floods—may have in part triggered abrupt climate changes in the Northern Hemisphere during the last deglaciation (approximately 19,000–11,700 years ago). The findings are contrary to the long held notion that cooling was primarily driven by changes in North Atlantic circulation.

Newswise: For now, river deltas gain land worldwide
Released: 23-Jan-2020 10:25 AM EST
For now, river deltas gain land worldwide
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Researchers from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), and colleagues found that delta areas worldwide have actually gained land in the past 30 years, despite river damming. However, recent land gains are unlikely to last throughout the 21st century due to expected, accelerated sea level rise. The researchers published their findings in the journal Nature.

Newswise:Video Embedded report-reveals-unseen-human-benefits-from-ocean-twilight-zone
VIDEO
Released: 22-Jan-2020 3:30 PM EST
Report reveals ‘unseen’ human benefits from ocean twilight zone
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A new report from researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) reveals for the first time the unseen—and somewhat surprising—benefits that people receive from the ocean’s twilight zone. Also known as the “mesopelagic,” this is the ocean layer just beyond the sunlit surface.

Newswise: Spock versus the volcano
Released: 20-Jan-2020 9:00 AM EST
Spock versus the volcano
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Kolumbo volcano—which sits 500 meters below the surface within the fault-heavy Hellenic Volcanic Arc just off Santorini—is the Aegean Sea’s most active and potentially dangerous volcano.

Newswise: Study Weighs Deep-Sea Mining’s Impact on Microbes
Released: 16-Jan-2020 12:30 PM EST
Study Weighs Deep-Sea Mining’s Impact on Microbes
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

The essential roles that microbes play in deep-sea ecosystems are at risk from the potential environmental impacts of mining.

Released: 14-Jan-2020 10:30 AM EST
WHOI scientist to provide testimony on climate science and solutions
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Richard Murray, Deputy Director and Vice President for Research at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), will testify before the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the U.S. House of Representatives on January 15, 2020.

Newswise: Investigating the Ocean’s Influence on Australia’s Drought
Released: 9-Jan-2020 4:00 PM EST
Investigating the Ocean’s Influence on Australia’s Drought
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

To understand how the relentless heat, blazing wild fires, and bone-dry conditions have reached such extremes, scientists at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are looking to the ocean.

Newswise:Video Embedded whoi-underwater-robot-takes-first-known-automated-sample-from-ocean
VIDEO
Released: 8-Jan-2020 1:45 PM EST
WHOI underwater robot takes first known automated sample from ocean
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

A hybrid remotely operated vehicle developed by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) took the first known automated sample performed by a robotic arm in the ocean. Last month, an international team of researchers used one of WHOI’s underwater robots, Nereid Under Ice (NUI), to explore Kolumbo volcano, an active submarine volcano off Greece’s famed Santorini island.

Newswise: How microbes reflect the health of coral reefs
Released: 19-Dec-2019 11:15 AM EST
How microbes reflect the health of coral reefs
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Microorganisms play important roles in the health and protection of coral reefs, yet exploring these connections can be difficult due to the lack of unspoiled reef systems throughout the global ocean. A collaborative study led by scientists at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and the Centro de Investigaciones Marinas - Universidad de La Habana (CIM-UH) compared seawater from 25 reefs in Cuba and the U.S. Florida Keys varying in human impact and protection, and found that those with higher microbial diversity and lower concentrations of nutrients and organic carbon—primarily caused by human activities—were markedly healthier.


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