Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences

Ocean Life, Planet Health

Mar 2011 eNews

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Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
News for March 14, 2011

Annual Report: A Fundamental Unity

The Laboratory’s latest annual report, A Fundamental Unity, is now available to view and download on our website! The report highlights many of the Laboratory’s best stories from the past 18 months, including our strategic partnership with Colby College and the groundbreaking ceremony for our new Ocean Science and Education Campus in East Boothbay. If you would like a printed copy, send an email to

Sea and Sky:
Investigating Arctic Cloud Particles

Carlton Rauschenberg, Research Associate in the Ocean and Atmospheric Chemistry Laboratory, is working at the Electron Microscopy Center at Stockholm University in Sweden for four weeks, in collaboration with Dr. Caroline Leck of the university’s meteorology department. The scientists will be imaging particles from the seawater surface microlayer, seawater foam, aerosols, fog, and cloud water in the high Arctic. The samples were collected at 87°N by Dr. Paty Matrai and her research team during the summer 2008 Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS) expedition aboard the icebreaker Oden. The multidisciplinary international ASCOS project is investigating cloud formation over the Arctic Ocean and the role of these clouds in the Arctic climate system.

Above: Preparing to deploy the expedition’s weather balloon to collect cloud water samples. Photo by Thorsten Mauritsen.

Rose Provasoli Scholarships Available for CCMP’s Algal Culture Techniques Course

The Laboratory’s Provasoli-Guillard National Center for the Culture of Marine Phytoplankton is offering an intensive 6-day residential course from June 5 to June 11, 2011. The course will cover basic and advanced techniques for isolating, growing, cryopreserving, identifying, and harvesting marine phytoplankton. Two scholarships from the Rose Provasoli Scholarship Fund are available to cover 50% of the $3,750 course fee. The scholarships will be given to Ph.D. students or postdoctoral associates whose research involves algae. Rose Provasoli was the wife of Dr. Luigi Provasoli, a pioneer in algal culturing techniques and one of the Center’s namesakes. Application details can be found at: Contact Brynne Kristan at for specific questions.

Vote for Dash!
Research Technician Dash Masland in National Geographic Contest Finals

Dash Masland, a Research Technician in the Single Cell Genomics Center is one of two finalists in the National Geographic Channel’s 2011 Expedition Granted competition. The winner, selected by public online vote, will receive $10,000 in funds for a scientific research expedition. Masland’s project would study the dietary habits of endangered Hawaiian monk seals, using DNA analysis to determine why the population is experiencing high rates of juvenile starvation and help develop more effective conservation strategies. A film crew from National Geographic visited the Laboratory last month to film Masland’s video about the project and her appeal for votes. Voting began March 13; the winner will be announced on the National Geogrphic Channel on April 7. Watch and vote on the National Geographic Channel website expedition page.

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences …exploring the world’s oceans, from microbes to global ecosystems


East Boothbay Town Meeting March 15: Ocean Campus Construction Update

Photo by Marty Getrich.

The Laboratory has scheduled a public information meeting on Tuesday, March 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the East Boothbay Fire Station on School Street for townspeople and area residents to hear an update about construction at the Laboratory’s new Ocean Science and Education Campus. Laboratory Executive Director Dr. Graham Shimmield will lead the discussion and describe the latest developments and plans at the 64-acre site. Project Shepherd Dr. Willie Wilson and Facilities Manager Marty Getrich will also be present to answer any questions. Everyone welcome!

BLOOM Program
Application Deadline
April 1

Photo by Greg Bernard.

The application deadline for the Laboratory’s 2011 Keller BLOOM Program for Maine high school and home-schooled juniors is Friday, April 1. The program, which runs from May 15 to May 19, 2011, offers students a week of hands-on ocean research with Bigelow scientists, including field sampling and experience in using some of the latest ocean science technologies. More information is available on the Keller BLOOM webpage.

Introducing Bigelow Laboratory: The Movie

The Laboratory has produced a five-and-half-minute film highlighting our core research areas and the new campus construction project in East Boothbay. The film was shown during the 2011 National Science and Environment Conference on Our Changing Oceans, held this past January in Washington, D.C. It features the work of four of the Laboratory’s senior scientists, and is a quick way to let people know about the scope of our research. We hope this will be the first of several video projects to familiarize the public with our work. Take a look and let us know what you think.

News Focus in Science: The Power of One
Dr. Ramunas Stepanauskas was featured in the January 7, 2011 issue of Science as part of a discussion about the research advantages of investigating and analyzing individual cells, including the ability to rapidly analyze large numbers of individual cells. Stepanauskas is Director of the Laboratory’s Single Cell Genomics Center (SCGC), the first such facility in the country. Over 130,000 individual cells have been analyzed in the SCGC’s high-thoughput pipeline to date, providing unique access to genomic DNA from microorganisms representing over 60 phyla of bacteria, archaea, and protists.

Getting to Know Us

The Laboratory is posting two-page profiles of its Senior Research Scientists, available for download as PDF documents. The profiles offer a quick way to learn about each scientist’s scope of work, the research questions being addressed, current and pending projects, recent findings, fieldwork, and future research priorities. Collect them all, and get to know us!

Become a part of our discoveries. Your help is more important to us now than ever before. Thank you!

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