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As children, many people have dreamed of plunging beneath the ocean surface to explore the unknown world below. Dr. Robert Ballard is living his childhood dream. He is among a small number of people...
Take a tour of the Alvin, a three-person submersible that allows scientists to...
“It’s a little appreciated fact that most of the animals in our ocean make...
I have been at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History since 1966...

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How many animals swim in the sea? It's not easy to count them all. To get a feel for the ocean's diversity, scientists, such as those involved in the Census of Marine Life , sail out on research cruises to collect and count as...
Cooks Bay in Moorea is one of the places that researchers are scouring in...
These cancer cells have been treated with discodermolide, a chemical...

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Deep below the ocean’s surface is a mysterious world that takes up 95% of Earth’s living space. It could hide 20 Washington...

The Ocean Blog

Picture this: clear, warm water bathing spectacular coral reefs , clouds of fish, circling sharks, and 17 scientists intent on studying the pristine tropical marine ecosystems of the Southern Line...
From discovering new marine life to exploring the wreck of the Titanic , ROV’s and other technology are helping us get a closer look at the more than two thirds of our planet that are underwater...
The ocean was the world's highway, and ships brimming with precious cargoes plied the waters. These merchant ships were tempting targets for pirates, who prowled the seas' major trade routes in...
Some of the most otherworldly animals—like those straight from a science fiction story—can be seen in the open ocean at night. By drifting in the blackwater in a scuba suit just under the surface,...
Smithsonian zoologists inside the Curasub , a 5-person submersible. They're exploring the biodiversity of the deep reefs off Curaçao in the southern Caribbean. Read more and watch videos about the...
For the past week, the Indonesian Biodiversity Research Center (IBRC) diving class of 2012 has seen countless fish in shades of pink, blue, yellow, red, and green darting through corals and the...
Ever since fourth grade I’ve wanted to explore the creatures and landscapes of the deep ocean in a submersible. It took awhile, but I finally got my chance this summer as part of the Deep Reef...
Scientists in the Division of Fishes at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History use X-ray imaging to study the complex bone structure and diversity of fish. This image gallery showcases...
"Cold-Water Diving: Going to Extremes for Research" is a video produced by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) that shows the focus needed to do scientific work in cold water. The gear is...
NOAA’s New Millennium Observatory (NeMO) was set up to study geologic, chemical, and biologic interactions along the mid-ocean ridge system. Learn more about NeMO and watch a video about underwater...
These Smithsonian field stations enable scientists worldwide to conduct long-term studies on mangrove ecosystems from a range of latitudes.
Scientists talk about the experience of exploring the ocean in this excerpt from the Deep Ocean Explorers video. More about deep ocean exploration can be found in our Deep Ocean Exploration featured...
Dr. Robert Ballard poses with an unmanned submersible, like the one he used when locating and exploring the wreck of the RMS Titanic. A veteran explorer, former U.S. Navy Commander, and professor of...
Curaçao, an island in the southern Caribbean is the site of the Smithsonian's Deep Reef Observation Project (DROP) . Researchers are using a submarine to study and collect specimens from the hard-to-...
Cooks Bay in Moorea is one of the places that researchers are scouring in their quest to collect one of every life form big enough to pick up with tweezers. In the background is Mt. Rotui—the...
The ocean holds a lot of history. Warships from World War II have been found on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean through the use of sonar technology and are being explored before they give in to the...
Submarine pilot Bruce Brandt secures ARMS (Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures) to the submersible Curasub off the coast of Curacao. In shallow water, SCUBA divers can place these biodiversity-...
Hidden beneath Arctic ice is a world few have ever seen. Take the icy plunge with a team of ice-loving scientists.
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