May 13, 2010
Last fall, with funding from the National Science Foundation, Bigelow Senior Research Scientist Dr. Paty Matrai and her collaborators from the United
States, Canada, and Germany successfully deployed the first in a series of instrument platforms—called O-Buoys—designed to be an autonomous,
ice-supported atmospheric chemistry measurement system in the Arctic Ocean. The first O-Buoy was stationed in the Beaufort Sea at approximately
76N, 138W, where it is still operational. Two additional O-Buoys were deployed this spring in Hudson Bay and the Canadian Arctic, with funding
from the Canadian International Polar Year Program. The autonomous, ice-tethered buoys are equipped with chemical sensors and, for the first time,
allow scientists to continuously monitor the composition of the atmosphere from the sea ice over the Arctic Ocean. The O-Buoy’s chemical sensors
measure atmospheric ozone, bromine monoxide, and carbon dioxide -- key indicators of greenhouse gas levels and the oxidation capacity of the atmosphere -- in
addition to weather conditions over the Arctic Ocean. O-Buoys are designed to operate with minimal direct human interaction and to survive harsh
conditions during the shifting of Arctic Ocean sea ice. On-board computers transmit data daily by satellite back to the laboratory for analysis;
data are shared weekly with the international community. More information and video footage of the first O-Buoy deployment are available on
Dr. Matrai’s webpage.
Photo courtesy of Paty Matrai.
May 18 Marine Science Careers Night
Is someone you know thinking about a career in ocean science?
Photo courtesy of Rick Wahle.
The Laboratory invites high school students and their parents to an informal discussion of career options in marine science and
oceanography, ocean science academic programs at Maine colleges and universities, and education programs at Bigelow Laboratory,
on Tuesday evening, May 18, 2010, from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Dining Commons at Lincoln Academy, 81 Academy Hill Road in Newcastle,
The evening will feature brief presentations by ocean scientists from Maine colleges and universities, along with information
about science programs and college admissions at several Maine institutions, including the University of Maine,
Maine Maritime Academy, the University of Southern Maine, the University of New England, Southern Maine Community College and
others. Information will also be available about Bigelow Laboratory’s five-day BLOOM Program for high school juniors and its
ten-week Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program for college students.
This event is free and open to all high school students and their parents.
Maine College Students Join Laboratory’s Oceanographic Research Expeditions to the Amazon Plume and the Costa Rica Dome
Photo by Jane Gardner.
Working with Dr. Joaquim Goés and his research team, Colby College
senior Ali Brandeis, junior Courtney Beaulieu, and Bowdoin College senior Kelly Keebler will work as interns on two National Science Foundation-funded
oceanographic expeditions this spring and summer. Brandeis (above, center) and Keebler (above, right) will be aboard a research ship off the coast of Costa Rica, helping scientists study grazing and iron controls of diatom blooms. Originally, this cruise was to take place in the Arabian Sea, but
concerns about piracy required relocation to the Costa Rica Dome (an area in the Pacific Ocean 500 to 800 miles west of Costa Rica),
which has a similar upwelling system as the Arabian Sea and where phytoplankton blooms are constrained by both iron limitation and
microzooplankton grazing. Beaulieu (above, left) will be aboard a research vessel at the mouth the
Amazon River, where scientists will investigate the ability of diatoms and other plankton communities within the surface ocean to act as significant
exporters of carbon in the Amazon River plume.
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences ...exploring the world’s oceans, from microbes to global ecosystems
BLOOM Class of 2010
We are very pleased to announce that the following Maine high school juniors have been
selected to be part of the 21st annual Keller BLOOM Program at the Laboratory, May 16 though 20, 2010:
Fort Kent Community School
Jonesport-Beals High School
Lewiston High School
South Portland High School
Bonny Eagle High School
Presque Isle High School
Sumner Memorial High School
Isleboro Central School
Belfast Area High School
Waterville High School
Wisdom Middle/High School (Frenchville)
Morse High School
Mt. Abram High School
Mount Desert Island High School
Criteria for selection included academic record, demonstrated aptitude in science, level of interest,
communication skills, and letters of recommendation.
Sixteen students are selected to participate each year. The Laboratory provides chaperones and room and board.
BLOOM (Bigelow Laboratory Orders Of Magnitude) is a five-day, intensive research experience that includes data
collection in the field, laboratory analysis, and public presentation of experimental results.
Fluid Imaging Technologies, Inc. Receives Exporter of the Year Award
Fluid Imaging Technologies, Inc. of Yarmouth, Maine has
received the 2010 Maine International Trade and Investment Award as “Exporter of the Year.” The company was
established to provide instrumentation and imaging services using FlowCAM® technology developed at Bigelow
Laboratory for rapid, automated monitoring of phytoplankton. FlowCAM® combines the capabilities of flow cytometry
(a technique for counting and examining microscopic particles, such as cells, suspended in a stream of fluid that
passes through an optical detection system) with digital imaging microscopy. The company manufactures and markets
the automated FlowCAM® particle imaging and analysis system, which takes hundreds of high-resolution, digital
images of individual particles and cells in a fluid in seconds; measures their size, shape, and dozens of other
parameters in real time; and uses proprietary image management software to save the resulting images and data for
analysis. Exports of this technology topped 60% of FlowCAM® revenues for the year and the patented particle analyzer
is currently in operation in 30 countries. It is also being currently used aboard the three-year
Tara Oceans expedition.
The award will be presented on June 3, 2010 by the Maine International Trade Center.
FlowCAM® image from the Tara. Photo by Michael Sieracki.
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