//archives

deep sea

This category contains 32 posts

‘Out of Sight’ Can’t Mean ‘Out of Mind’

Surface marine debris and microplastic pollution has gotten more attention recently—which is great—but there’s another garbage problem we are only starting to get a handle on. Deep in the dark, discarded items litter the sea floor, like dust-bunnies swept along by currents and collecting at rates previously underestimated. Andrea SchlunkI am a former PhD student […]

How do skates of the deep survive the crushing pressure?

On this Sharkbites Saturday we look at a fish that isn’t a shark at all! Here we explain how skates, the cousins of sharks and rays, use an interesting physiological mechanism to survive the pressure of the deep ocean. Carolyn WheelerI am currently a PhD student studying marine science at the University of Massachusetts Boston, […]

Into the deep: Deep sea mining is upon us, whether you would risk it or not

While we have a lot to discover about the deep sea, we do know that in the depths of the ocean are a number of valuable minerals and metals like gold, manganese, and cobalt. Yet with so little known, companies are ready to dive into the cold deep, gathering these metals for economic gain. Kristin […]

The Biological Big Bang: Testing the hypothesis that sperm whales use auditory bursts to stun prey and other proposed feeding strategies.

Article Fais, A., Johnson, M., Wilson, M., Soto, N. A., & Madsen, P. T. (2016). Sperm whale predator-prey interactions involve chasing and buzzing, but no acoustic stunning. Scientific reports, 6, 28562. Background Sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) are big. To put it in perspective, an adult or bull sperm whale is longer on average (52 ft.) […]

Growing a Scientist: Undergraduate Research 2018, part 3

Check out these posts by guest authors Deborah Leopo, Mike Miller, Whitney Marshall, and Robert Lewis about deep sea snail species, sea level rise, and tectonic modeling–these students were part of the SURFO program at URI-GSO over Summer 2018, and have some really exciting research to share! Anna RobuckI am a third year PhD student […]

A Gentle (Robotic) Hand

The world of deep-sea environments is fascinating, and there is so much to learn from what we’ve yet to actually see. Scientists are now 3D printing soft manipulators that allow us to study fragile, deep-sea organisms without damaging them, all with the added benefit of real-time problem solving. Rishya NarayananRishya is pursuing an M.S. in […]

Not So Organic Marine Snow

What happens when plastic pollution mixes into the ocean carbon cycle? Read to find out more about how plastic from the surface ocean might reach mussels living at the bottom of the sea! Melanie FeenI am a first year graduate student at the Graduate School of Oceanography at University of Rhode Island. I use robots […]

Octopus Mama Drama: Research Expedition Bonus Science

Dorado Outcrop is a small underwater mountain that first received attention from a few scientists because the seafloor that it sits upon is colder than what is expected. It ended up in the media spot-light because of the hundreds of octopuses that call it home. Anne M. HartwellHello, welcome to Oceanbites! My name is Annie, […]

Biofilms are a prominent first step in the colonization of wood-falls

A profound yet never-before-appreciated first step in the colonization of sulfur oxidizing bacteria on the surface of wood-debris in the deep-sea is attributed to sugars and other labile components of wood. Anne M. HartwellHello, welcome to Oceanbites! My name is Annie, I’m a marine research scientist who has been lucky to have had many roles […]

Snowmageddon: A lighthearted start to Marine Snow theme week

While the term “marine snow” may conjure images of an aquatic winter wonderland, some aspects of this phenomenon may not inspire a Bing Crosby song. Marine snow is responsible for transporting many of the nutrients found in the surface, sunlit waters of the ocean to depths where it becomes a significant food and nutrient source […]

The backbone of an ecosystem: bone-eating zombie worms control biodiversity at deep-sea whale falls

Zombies are real – but they are nothing like the ones from The Walking Dead. No, these zombies are worms that live in the ocean. And instead of brains, they eat and break down bones. In fact, these zombie worms are quite important to food webs. Click here to find out more about zombie worms […]

Autonomous Under-ICE Vehicles

Seafloor exploration in areas of thick ice coverage has many obstacles. With careful planning and modifaction of AUV design and recovery methods, explorers are able to map and study the Gakkel Spreading Ridge 4000 meters below the thick Arctic Ice Pack. Anne M. HartwellHello, welcome to Oceanbites! My name is Annie, I’m a marine research […]

Top 5 Highlights of Deep Sea Exploration in 2017

What have this year’s deep sea exploration expeditions encountered so far? Read more to find out! Megan ChenI graduated with a Masters of Coastal & Marine Management from the University of Akureyri in Iceland, and am currently working at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History in Ocean Education. I am interested in smart […]

MAC-EXP: A new sediment corer designed to maintain in situ pressure conditions

The MAC-EXP, a pressure-coring experimentation and cultivation system, was designed to advance our ability to analyze the microbial processes in the deep-sea sediments, which is typically a challenge because the pressure change upon recovery can alter the in situ state. Jackson et al. (2017) describe the result of the systems first field trials. Anne M. […]

Science Behind the Scenes: The Corps of Exploration on the Exploration Vessel Nautilus

What kind of people does it take to do research out at sea? Oceanbites writers Ashley Marranzino and Megan Chen participated in a research cruise aboard the Exploration Vessel Nautilus and asked the Corps of Exploration! Megan ChenI graduated with a Masters of Coastal & Marine Management from the University of Akureyri in Iceland, and […]

Science Behind the Scenes: A Tour of the Exploration Vessel Nautilus

What is it really like to do research out at sea? Last month oceanbites writers Megan Chen and Ashley Marranzino participated in a research cruise aboard the Exploration Vessel Nautilus – watch a special behind the scenes video blog to see a tour of the ship! Ashley MarranzinoI received my Master’s degree from the University […]

Growing a Scientist: Undergraduate Research 2017

Each summer, the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography (GSO) hosts undergraduate students from all over the country to participate in oceanographic research. These Summer Undergraduate Research Fellows (SURFOs) have not only been working with GSO scientists, but they have spent part of their time learning how to communicate this science to the […]

Deep Iron: Good for the Ocean’s Bones

: Iron isn’t just good for your body – it’s good for the ocean, too. While many studies focus on external sources of iron to the global ocean, Fitzsimmons et al. investigated iron sources coming from deep hydrothermal vents along midocean ridges, and how they might disperse iron and other metals vast distances through the […]

Eating bones and building habitats: the life of an ecosystem engineer

Believe it or not, zombies can be…a good thing? Read on to find out how “zombie worms” in the deep ocean contribute to biodiversity! Erin McLeanHi and welcome to oceanbites! I recently finished my master’s degree at URI, focusing on lobsters and how they respond metabolically to ocean acidification projections. I did my undergrad at […]

Benthic biology on a thermally boring deep-sea ridge

The deep ocean is vast and full of neat ocean dwellers, many of which scientists know little about. One way to investigate them is from images and videos captured during deep-sea exploration efforts using submersibles. A group of scientists did just that to quantify the benthic assemblages at different depths and a variety of substate […]

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