Estuaries and their surrounding wetlands are bodies of water usually found where rivers meet the sea. Estuaries are home to unique plant and animal communities that have adapted to brackish water—a mixture of fresh water draining from the land and salty seawater.
Sonar, short for Sound Navigation and Ranging, is helpful for exploring and mapping the ocean because sound waves travel farther in the water than do radar and light waves. NOAA scientists primarily use sonar to develop nautical charts, locate underwater hazards to navigation, search for and map objects on the seafloor such as shipwrecks, and map the seafloor itself. There are two types of sonar—active and passive.
There is good news for people that want to protect the oceans. And that is marine protected areas, but in particular, in the United States, it’s National Marine Sanctuaries.
When I first started as a maritime archaeologist, you would go out in a boat, you would take a look at a spot on the land and another spot, and if they lined up right, you’d figure you were more or less over a shipwreck that you plotted, you’d jump into the water, you’d swim down, and there it would be. And you might share that with the other diver that was with you.
One of the things that we’ve learned when we look at shipwrecks in particular but other parts of archaeology is when something is preserved, when it’s set aside, it’s almost like money that you put in the bank. But it’s money that you can’t make another deposit to. Once you start taking it out, it’s gone forever. That’s why as archaeologists, we’re very careful to look and not touch, more often than not. In the time I’ve been an archaeologist, I’ve seen the technology change so much that if I could go back and say, “Hold on! Don’t dig that ship up now! Let’s wait thirty years or forty years because we’ll learn twice as much!” I would go back and have that conversation with myself and others.
So much of history has really been tightly kept in a little box that archaeology is now cracking open. I started in archaeology when I was fourteen.
Maritime archaeology is the study, from what people leave behind, of how we as human beings have interacted with the oceans and with lakes and rivers.
I’ve seen ancient ships from a time when the Mediterranean was an expanding area of different cultures from ancient Egypt to the Phoenicians, to the rise of the Greeks and the Romans.
The way archaeology works is often times it gives us information that isn’t in the history books. In some cases, there are no history books.
In some areas, the maps used for navigation on the ocean, called nautical charts, still show information acquired in the 1800s, so there is a LOT of work to do!
Boaters rely on NOAA's nautical charts for depth measurements so they don't accidentally ground on sandbars or other underwater obstructions. See how NOAA updates nautical charts with high tech tools—including new experimental ocean "robots" that are small enough to survey the nation's shallowest coastal areas.
We visit a research station perched at the end of a long pier in Duck, North Carolina, to get a close-up look at the microwave radar water level sensor—a revolutionary step forward in how NOAA measures water levels around the nation.
My name's Andy Bowen, I'm a research specialist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the project manager for the development of the Nereus vehicle.
Every day we are surrounded by noises, from cars and planes, construction sites, and factories. While for most of us it is an annoyance, in some cases it can be harmful.
Henry Stommel, an eminent oceanographer from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, envisioned the day that there would be "a thousand swimming robots" in the sea.
In the waters off of Martha's Vineyard, the Office of Naval Research is using unmanned and robotic systems to investigate how sediments on the ocean floor are moved around by currents and waves.
This is the Okeanos Explorer. Its name comes from the Greek word for ocean.
Scientific research doesn’t always take place in a laboratory, so neither should your science class.
Not too long ago, scientists studying the ocean made a fascinating discovery that has helped us better understand our planet Earth.
More than two and half miles below the surface, the wreckage of the Titanic rests on the seafloor …… both as a memorial and a living laboratory.
For nearly 200 years the US Coast Guard has been tasked with preserving our country's marine resources. That means tending to the oceans by protecting it from the castoffs of our human lives.
It’s March 8, 1862 and an epic battle of the Civil War is underway in the waters off Hampton Roads, Virginia. The Confederate CSS Virginia faces off against its northern opponent, the USS Monitor.
Algae play a vital role in the marine ecosystem. They provide food for all sorts of species. But in rare instances, they can also do harm.
Argo is a global array of more than 3,500 free-drifting profiling floats that measure the upper two thousand meters of the ocean.
In the waters off San Francisco Bay… in the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary… lie hundreds of mysteries.
What is it like to work on a NOAA ship? Come aboard the NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson where collecting data for NOAA nautical charts requires science and technology...but most importantly, passionate, ad ...