Video Feed Live From 30 Meters

It has been a long year waiting to announce this.  Last year Dr. Adrian Glover, long time DSN fan from the Natural History Museum in London, showed me a live feed of camera mounted on a dead harbor porpoise from 30m in a fjord on the west coast of Sweden.  As we set there in a cafe, I watched invertebrates mounting an ongoing attack with intermittent flashes of seals blasting into view. I asked if I could share it with our readers but it was sealed lips until the launch of the Darwin Centre.

Finally, that day has arrived and the Darwin Centre realized as a new state-of-the-art gallery, science and collections facility. At the official opening on the 14th September, guests including His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales and Sir David Attenborough were shown the live link.  I am not sure why we needed to wait for a prince and knight.

The observatory is collaboration between Dr. Glover and University of Gothenburg Researcher Dr. Thomas Dahlgren and adds another link our ongoing endeavors to acquire continuous data from oceans, and our crucial to understanding how marine ecosystems function.  Already Glover and Dahlgreen have deployed the system to study the scavenging community behaviour on the remains of a dead whale, lobster-crab interactions in a lobster pot and fish behaviour (these can be seen on the projects Youtube Channel).  As Adrian states, “Even something simple like the decomposition of a small whale in shallow water is very poorly known. Until now we had to make do with ‘one-off’ visits using submersibles, remotely operated-vehicles or scuba divers.”

Dr. M (1720 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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2 comments on “Video Feed Live From 30 Meters
  1. Thanks guys.

    However, to clarify, the main reason we have not made it public up to now is that the camera could not handle more than a few people logging on at once. Hopefully this new set-up can. We will see!

  2. I would like to as that the opening event included the first ever (as far as we know) underwater Skype communication. In his presentation at the opening Adrian worked in a live video chat with Bjorn Kallstrom diving at the observatory site!

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