This summer University of Maine Darling Marine Center based researcher Dr. Rhian Waller, a cold-water coral expert, will lead a NOAA Ocean Exploration’s 2021 expedition called North Atlantic Stepping Stones: New England and Corner Rise Seamounts.
The New England and Corner Rise Seamounts are located in the North Atlantic Ocean more than 1,200 miles off the New England coast. The expedition is scheduled for June 30-July 29 and will depart from Newport, Rhode Island aboard the NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer. The 224-foot Okeanos Explorer is dedicated to exploration and knowledge advancement about the deep ocean using a Remotely Operated Vehicle, or underwater robot, called the Deep Discoverer.
Once on station, each morning, Waller and expedition crew will meet to determine if a deepwater remotely operated vehicle dive is possible given the ocean conditions. During each dive Waller and other scientists from around the globe will narrate the live video feed that will be available for the public to view and will answer questions sent in by the public.
In addition to the public being able to participate through the live video feed, Waller has partnered with Skidompha Public Library for a series of events including the opportunity for people to decorate Styrofoam cups that will be sent on deep dives aboard the ROV, where the cups will succumb to the pressure of the deep ocean and shrink or be crushed.
Those who wish to participate can pick up one of sixty cups from the Children’s Library at Skidompha beginning on June 1. The decorated cups need to be returned to the library by June 15 to be sent on the expedition. Crushed cups can then be picked up in early August. Participants and other members of the public can then participate in a live Q&A with Waller on July 30 via Zoom.
Be sure to join Skidompha Public Library’s Youth Services Facebook Group to be notified of other associated events and to get instructions on how to join the live Q&A session following Waller’s expedition.
For more information about this program and other Skidompha Public Library children’s programming contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 207-563-5513.