Recent News

Bigelow Laboratory Appoints New Board Members
Bigelow Laboratory recently appointed four new members to its board of trustees. The individuals will support our mission to study the foundation of global ocean health and unlock its potential to improve the future for all life on the planet.

Beakers and Brushes
Bigelow Laboratory scientists regularly collaborate with artists to help share the essence of their work. The mysteries of the ocean have inspired art that helps connect people with the heart of discovery. It also motivates them to care, which is vital to building a society guided by science.

A Sea Change for Students
The Sea Change Semester program gives students a unique, hands-on experience with marine research. They earn credits under the guidance of working scientists who equip them with tools to tackle questions about the future of our oceans.

Profile: Ed and Melanie Hodgdon
Ed and Melanie Hodgdon deeply appreciate the value of ocean health and have dedicated their lives to education and science. Through their lives, they hope to inspire others to follow a similar path.

Study: 'Photosynthetic' Algae Can Survive the Dark
Researchers from Bigelow Laboratory discovered how some species of single-celled algae lived through the last mass extinction, a finding that could change how we understand global ocean processes.

Greenland’s Nutrients Changing, With Global Impact
Scientists have discovered the availability of carbon in Greenland’s waters is shifting poleward and appearing earlier than in previous decades. This finding will enhance understanding of carbon cycling and nutrient availability in this rapidly warming and changing environment.

New Installation Fuses Art and Science to Share Ocean Wonder
A new art installation that celebrates ocean life and scientific efforts to understand it will open at the laboratory on Nov. 9. The exhibit is the culmination of a three-year project focused on the Gulf of Maine and the human impacts that affect it.

Study Projects Gulf of Maine Less Suitable for Right Whales by 2050
Research led by Bigelow Laboratory sheds light on future habitats for the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale. The work shows how keeping a close watch on environmental changes can aid efforts to restore their population.

Unique Algae, Salamander Relationship to be Explored for Medical Potential
There is only one known example of algae living inside a vertebrate, and it may be a key to unlocking medical solutions. New research will now explore this unique relationship and its potential for drug discovery.

$10 Million Announced to Support Algae-Feed Research for U.S. Dairy
A new $10 million grant will bolster research into algae-based feed supplements that could increase environmental sustainability in the dairy industry while improving milk production.

Bigelow Laboratory Nears 100 Percent Solar Power
Bigelow Laboratory is now powered by more than 90 percent renewable energy following the recent construction of a local solar garden, making a leap forward in our green initiatives.

Researchers to Explore Relationship Between Volcanoes, Ocean Ecosystems
A team of interdisciplinary researchers are launching a new project to explore how volcanic ash supports phytoplankton, a foundation of marine ecosystems.

New Approach Opens a Window Into Life Below the Seafloor
Scientists from Bigelow Laboratory pioneered research in the crustal rock under the Atlantic that could open new windows into our understanding of how life survives deep under the sea – or in space.

Students Bring Diversity, Life to Bigelow Laboratory
Each year, our scientists invite students to conduct research at the lab. After a year of virtual science, the bustle of students learning, sharing their work, and collaborating with peers and mentors has brought welcome energy.

Research into Cattle Methane Solutions Bolstered by $5 Million Grant
A new $5 million grant will support Bigelow Laboratory scientists’ research to reduce methane emissions from cattle using an algae-based feed supplement.

Tiny Organisms Shed Big Light on Ocean Nutrients
Sweeping changes in marine nutrients may seem to be a likely consequence of increasing global temperatures; however, new research suggests that processes below the ocean surface could play a larger role than previously thought.

Deep-Sea Research Bolstered with $2 Million Grant
Bigelow Laboratory has been awarded $2 million by NSF to accelerate scientific understanding of the impacts of emerging industries in the deep sea – one of the most mysterious, and potentially lucrative, areas of the ocean.

Changing the Flow of Ocean Science
The field of flow cytometry revolutionized oceanography. It has been instrumental in breakthroughs, from advances in genomics to the discovery of new species - and it was pioneered at Bigelow Laboratory.

Ecosystem in a Bottle
Bigelow Laboratory and UMaine are leading a $20 million project pioneering DNA technology to make discoveries about pressing environmental issues – from key organisms to shifts in the face of climate change.

Maine Students Dive Into Hands-On Ocean Science
This May, Maine students were part of a hands-on workshop at Bigelow Laboratory. They took samples, conducted experiments, and learned how to analyze data as part of a week-long experience that can have a big impact on their future.

New E-Vehicle Charging Stations Available to Public
Bigelow Laboratory installed eight plugins this spring, which are available for public use. The charging stations are the newest part of the lab’s green initiatives and community-building efforts.

Science at Sea: Researchers Share Expedition Experience
This winter, a team of set out to unravel mysteries behind one of the ocean’s most important algae. Meticulous planning and quarantines complicated the expedition but all returned safely. Here is what they had to share.

Microbe in Evolutionary Stasis for Millions of Years
A group of microbes found deep underground have been at an evolutionary standstill for millions of years. They could have significant implications for biotech applications and our understanding of evolution.

Tiny Currents May Impact Vital Ocean Food Source
Copepods are a vital part of Earth’s aquatic ecosystems. Bigelow Laboratory researchers recently published findings that shed light on how these miniature marvels move and cluster in the ocean.

Plotting a Course in an Ocean of Big Data
“Big data” techniques are revolutionizing ocean science, and Bigelow Laboratory is leading efforts to unlock knowledge and tools that are impossible by any other means.

Bigelow President to Lead The Oceanography Society
The Oceanography Society recently announced that Bigelow Laboratory President Deborah Bronk has been elected as their newest president. Her term will begin in 2023.

New Research to Explore Seaweed for Ocean, Economic Health
A nearly $900,000 grant awarded to Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences will be used to explore how kelp aquaculture can remediate negative effects of climate change.

Research Illuminates Lobsters Genetic Response to Changing Climate
New findings suggest the American lobster, which supports the most valuable fishery in North America, may be more susceptible to climate change than previously thought.

Sea of Solutions
Bigelow Laboratory curates one of the world’s largest and most diverse collections of marine algae, and it has now launched a new Center for Algal Innovation to help companies use algae for sustainable solutions.

A Year on Ice
The MOSAiC expedition was the largest in Arctic research history. Its launch was the product of careful plotting of plans and back-ups, but its year of research was shaped by adapting to the unexpected.

Building a Science Community in the Time of COVID
In this year of social distancing, the professional world has seemed anything but social. However, thanks to technology and a lot of creative planning, scientists are building community in unexpected ways.

Rescued Data Sheds Light on Arctic Climate Change
Microscopic algae are a key component of the Arctic, but their role in the ecology of the Arctic Ocean may have been underestimated for decades, according to a new research review.

Research Internships Inspire Continued Discovery
For former Bigelow Laboratory intern Phoebe Keyes, the relaxing week after her graduation from Hamilton College in 2019 brought something unexpected – a deep longing to return to lab work.

Loss of Sea Otters Accelerating the Effects of Climate Change
The impacts of predator loss and climate change are combining to devastate living reefs that have defined Alaskan kelp forests for centuries, according to new research published in Science.

Study Reveals Two Major Microbial Groups Can't Breathe
A new scientific study has revealed unique life strategies of two major groups of microbes that live below Earth’s surface.

The Future of Farming
Bigelow Laboratory researcher make discoveries that support Maine aquaculture — and can inform global ocean solutions.

From Pandemics to Whales: Insights into Forecasting
The current pandemic underscores the inherent complexity, valuable opportunities, and deep importance of data and forecasting science.

Profile: Tom Allen
Bigelow Laboratory Trustee Tom Allen has spent much of his life as a public servant and advocate for ocean conservation.

Algal Symbiosis Could Shed Light on Dark Ocean
Research has revealed a surprise twist in the symbiotic relationship between a salamander and the alga that lives inside its eggs.

New Method Lets Scientists Peer Deeper into Ocean
Researchers have advanced a new way to see into the ocean's depths, establishing an approach to measure key properties using light.

Study Probes Seismic Blast Impacts on Zooplankton
Researchers are working to understand how underwater seismic blasting impacts the ocean’s smallest animals.

Study: Microplastic Pollution Harms Lobster Larvae
Microplastic fiber pollution in the ocean impacts larval lobsters at each stage of their development, according to new research.

To Our Community: A Message About Racism
Equality and justice are long overdue for black Americans, and there are countless other challenges facing this country that we will only overcome as a unified nation.

Survey Investigates Possible Threat to Maine Oysters
New research identifies potential sources of oyster disease, providing Maine shellfish growers important information.

Measuring Ocean Iron to Improve Climate Models
Senior Research Scientist Ben Twining is improving climate predictions by studying a nutrient that drives ocean productivity.

New Genetic Tools Expand Microbial Research
A team of scientists has developed more than 200 new techniques for using microbes to investigate a host of questions in biology.

Peru Fieldwork Team Perseveres During Lockdown
Despite a quarantine and numerous hurdles, a field team is maintaining an ambitious ocean experiment through creative problem solving.

Study Probes Marine Virus Impacts on Harmful Algae
A team of researchers is uniting their diverse expertise to bring a holistic perspective to Florida red tide research.

Ocean Research in the Face of a Pandemic
Bigelow Laboratory is currently closed to the public, but the bustle that typically fills the laboratory has moved online.

Study Finds Fish Have Diverse Gut Microbiomes
The rich biodiversity of coral reefs even extends to microbial communities within fish, according to new research.

To our community: A message about COVID-19
There is so much exciting and promising work going on at the lab right now. And the current crisis has been an important reminder of how critical it is to proactively invest in scientific discovery and solutions.

Scientist Ends First Leg of Yearlong Arctic Expedition
Senior Research Scientist Steve Archer spent over three months on the largest-ever Arctic research expedition. He's just getting started.

Scientist Uses CRISPR to Discover and Inspire
Bigelow Laboratory scientists are uniting their expertise to clarify how oil spills impact copepods in the Arctic and beyond.

Experiments Probe How Copepods Cope with Oil
Bigelow Laboratory scientists are uniting their expertise to clarify how oil spills impact copepods in the Arctic and beyond.

The Art of Arctic Research
An interdisciplinary team is unearthing how microbes process iron in the harsh Arctic tundra, and how they will shape the planet's response to climate change.

Educating the Next Generation
The Keller BLOOM program celebrates 30 years of inspiring high school juniors through hands-on experiences with ocean science.

Profile: Anna Marie Thron
Passion for the natural world has driven Anna Marie Thron's extensive involvement with environmental nonprofits.

Maine Researchers, Teacher Begin Scientific Cruise
A unique educational opportunity launches soon, when a Maine teacher sets sail as part of a Bigelow Laboratory team.

Study Weighs Deep-sea Mining's Impact on Microbes
A new study examines how the essential roles that microbes play in deep-sea ecosystems are at risk from the potential environmental impacts of mining.

Program Inspires Next Generation of Ocean Leaders
The Sea Change Semester is a hands-on, intensive ocean science program for undergraduate students in residence at the lab.

Entrepreneurial Explorations Drive Science Forward
The ocean offers creative ways to solve global problems, and exploring these opportunities is a core part of Bigelow Laboratory’s research.

Forecast to Help Shellfish Growers Weather Toxicity
The same technology behind facial recognition and self-driving cars may soon help Maine’s shellfish industry protect against algal toxins.

Novel Study Underscores Microbial Individuality
A new publication reports a staggering degree of diversity that defies contemporary definitions of microbial species.

Microbial Products Color Ancient Art, Study Shows
Early hunter-gatherers heated microbially-produced iron oxides to make pigments for rock art, new research shows.

10 Years Reading Life’s Blueprints, A Cell at a Time
Since its founding a decade ago, the Single Cell Genomics Center at Bigelow Laboratory has enabled discoveries in a huge range of fields.

Large Jellyfish Stoke Curiosity and Science
This summer, Maine’s busy beaches were frequented by a surprising visitor – remarkably large lion’s mane jellyfish.

Scientists Use New Grant to Benefit Climate, Cows
Bigelow Laboratory scientists are identifying seaweeds for dietary supplements that could reduce methane emission by cattle.

Researchers Sleuth Palate to Solve Lobster Mystery
Bigelow scientists are working to determine what lobster larvae eat, and looking for clues as to why juvenile populations are low.

New Scientist Evolves Laboratory’s Expertise
John Burns has added his diverse research background and cutting-edge skillset to Bigelow Laboratory’s interdisciplinary science team.

Report Highlights Lab's Economic Impact on Maine
Bigelow Laboratory contributed $23.7 million to Maine’s economy during 2018, according to a new, independent evaluation.

Study Reveals New Patterns of Key Ocean Nutrient
The important nutrient phosphate may be less abundant in the global ocean than previously thought, according to new research.

New Partnership with University of New England
Bigelow Laboratory and The University of New England announced a new partnership today that will support joint ventures in research and education.

Pioneering Researcher Explores Deep Limits of Life
Senior Research Scientist Beth Orcutt studies deep-sea microbes to resolve life's limits, and recently received an award for her work.

$20 Million Grant for DNA-based Ocean Monitoring
A $20 million grant from the National Science Foundation will fund a five-year initiative by Maine science institutes to revolutionize the understanding and management of coastal ocean ecosystems.

Study Reveals Patterns in Globally Important Algae
An important ocean algae is mysteriously scarce in one of the most productive regions of the Atlantic Ocean, new research shows.

Researchers Prepare for Historic Arctic Expedition
Bigelow Laboratory scientists spent mid-March on the northern coast of Alaska preparing for the largest-ever Arctic research expedition.

Whales and Warming in the Gulf of Maine
Deep water warming is impacting animals in the Gulf, from its smallest inhabitants to the endangered North Atlantic right whale.

Ocean Research Yields New Tools to Protect Lakes
Bigelow Laboratory researchers are leveraging their expertise in marine algal toxins to develop technologies that help protect lakes.

Profile: Andrew Davis
As a philanthropist who focuses on some of the world’s biggest issues, Andrew Davis seeks out and develops agents of change.

Coral Reefs Shifting Away from Equatorial Waters
Coral reefs are retreating from equatorial waters and establishing new reefs in more temperate regions, according to new research.

Bigelow Laboratory Appoints New Board Leadership
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences has announced upcoming changes to its board of trustees and advisory board.

Study of Individual Krill Reveals Group Dynamics
The decisions made by individual Antarctic krill help to shape the massive schools they form, which can stretch for hundreds of miles.

Climate Driving New Right Whale Movement
New research connects recent changes in the movement of right whales to decreased food availability and rising temperatures in Gulf of Maine’s deep waters.

Scientists Head to Sea to Explore Subseafloor Life
A team of researchers currently at sea is using a deep-diving robot to study the hardy microbes living in the marine deep biosphere.

Study Reveals Vast Diversity of Ocean Microbes
Advanced molecular techniques have revealed the diversity of a little-understood group of ocean microbes called protists.

Study Overviews Seasonal Shifts in Gulf of Maine
A new report shows that there is limited understanding of how important seasonal events in the Gulf of Maine are changing.

Innovative Courses Spur Interdisciplinary Learning
Bigelow Laboratory has expanded its hands-on education experiences with new courses on earth systems chemistry and seafood forensics.

Study Looks to Iron from Microbes for Climate Help
A new paper details how distributing iron particles produced by bacteria could help remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Researchers Discover New Nitrogen Source in Arctic
Scientists have revealed that the partnership between an alga and bacteria is making nitrogen newly available in the Arctic Ocean.

Fish Diversity Linked to Caribbean Coral Reef Health
The health of reefs can be impacted as much by the diversity of fish that graze on them as by the amount of fish that do so, a new study reveals.

Synchrotron X-rays Illuminating Ocean Life
For the last 20 years, Senior Research Scientist Ben Twining has taken an unusual approach to studying the ocean.

Study Shows Deep Microbes Hold Clues to Early Life
A new study has revealed how a group of unusual, deep-sea microbes provides clues to the evolution of life on Earth.

Study Identifies Biomedical Potential of Bivalves
Shellfish like oysters and mussels have the potential to revolutionize human health research, according to a new study.

Scientist Honored for Bigelow Education Programs
After years of teaching with humor and dedication, Senior Research Scientist David Fields has won the prestigious Ramón Margalef Award.

Study Shows Algae Thrive Under Greenland Sea Ice
Microscopic marine plants flourish beneath the ice that covers the Greenland Sea, fueling the ocean ecosystem.

Researchers Demystifying How Arctic Clouds Form
This summer found two Bigelow Laboratory researchers far from home, alert for polar bears, and bundled in cold weather gear.

Research Unlocks Secrets of Iron Storage in Algae
Phytoplankton iron storage strategies may determine which species thrive in changing oceans and impact marine food webs.

Study Shows How Mussels Handle Microplastic Fiber
New research shows that mussels readily take in microplastic pollution fibers from the ocean but quickly flush most of them out again.

Ocean Insights to Life on Mars
Several Bigelow Laboratory researchers are applying what they’ve learned through ocean research to the search for life on Mars.

Time Series Studies Illuminating the Oceans
Bigelow Laboratory scientists are conducting time series studies around the planet that are providing unique insights into our oceans.