As of the end of October, researchers at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences have been awarded over $4.9 million in new grants by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2008. Major projects funded include expansion of the Provasoli-Guillard National Center for the Culture of Marine Phytoplankton to include the world's first collection of marine archaea, viruses, and bacteria. (11/18/2008)
WEST BOOTHBAY HARBOR, ME, November 18, 2008 – As of the end of October, researchers at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences have been awarded over $4.9 million in new grants by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2008. NSF is an independent U.S. government agency responsible for promoting science and engineering through research programs and education projects.
Dr. Graham Shimmield, Executive Director and President at Bigelow Laboratory, sees the funding as a recognition of the Laboratory’s role in advancing our knowledge about the impact of global environmental changes on the world’s ocean ecosystems.
“These latest NSF awards reflect Bigelow Laboratory’s direct involvement in the nation’s emerging priorities for ocean research, including the need to understand the role of ocean life in stabilizing global climate conditions,” Shimmield said. “They’re part of an increasing emphasis on the global, interconnected systems-based approach to ocean science that has consistently earned the Laboratory an international reputation as a research pioneer.”
The grants will fund major projects that include expansion of the Laboratory’s Provasoli-Guillard National Center for the Culture of Marine Phytoplankton to include the world’s first collection of marine viruses and bacteria, begin to build the technological infrastructure and instrumentation for single-cell genomics research on marine microbes, and establish a new site of NSF’s nation-wide Research Experience for Undergraduates Program.
For John Richardson, Maine Commissioner for Economic Development, the Laboratory's NSF funding awards represent a significant benefit for the state.
"Federal research funds are a great help in stimulating science-based economic development throughout Maine," he said. I'm extremely pleased about Bigelow Laboratory's success in strengthening the state's science and technology base. This record of federal support is a key element in our ability to leverage sustained economic growth in this important and growing sector of our economy."
An independent center for global ocean research, the focus of study at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences ranges from microbial oceanography -- examining the biology of the world’s oceans at the molecular level -- to the large-scale biogeochemical processes that drive interactions between ocean ecosystems and global environment as a whole. These projects have taken Bigelow scientists around the world to every ocean and the polar seas. The Laboratory is a private, nonprofit research institution supported by government research grants and contributions from the public.