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Ocean & Earth Sciences

Live streaming exploration of deepwater areas of Samoa

On February 16, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Ship Okeanos Explorer will begin its 2017 American Samoa Expedition to explore unknown and poorly known deepwater areas of American Samoa and Samoa, with an emphasis on Rose Atoll Marine National Monument, National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa and National Park of American Samoa. The expedition is part of the Campaign …

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Hottest, most buoyant hotspots draw from primordial reservoir deep in the Earth

Earth’s mantle—the layer between the crust and the outer core—is home to a primordial soup even older than the moon. Among the main ingredients is helium-3 (He-3), a vestige of the Big Bang and nuclear fusion reactions in stars. And the mantle is its only terrestrial source. Scientists studying volcanic hotspots, like our Hawaiian Islands, find high helium-3 relative to …

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UH Mānoa receives top international ranking for earth and environmental sciences

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is ranked 12th among universities internationally for earth and environmental sciences according to Nature Index. The Nature Index ranks institutions based on the number of research papers published in Nature and a select group of other prestigious journals (68 in total), each of which includes peer-review by active researchers. The chosen journals are sufficiently …

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UH Mānoa oceanographer Craig Smith awarded 2016 Senckenberg Prize

The Senckenberg Nature Research Society (Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung) awarded its 2016 Nature Research Prize to University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa oceanographer Craig Smith. The Senckenberg prize in the Nature Research category, endowed with $10,000, is awarded annually to a scientist who has made excellent, internationally recognized achievements in nature research. Smith’s research is focused on the species diversity and …

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New study revises estimate of the greatest mass extinction

A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Steven Stanley, paleontologist at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, revised estimates of the largest mass extinction to have taken place since animals appeared on Earth. It is undisputed that more than 250 million years ago, during the end-Permian “great dying” as it is …

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Native squid and its bacterium may help human and environmental health

The humble Hawaiian bobtail squid is helping to build the University of Hawaiʻi’s capacity in the hot field of microbiome research. A microbiome is a community of microorganisms. Researchers at UH Mānoa’s Kewalo Marine Laboratory are studying the simple squid and its interactions with a single bioluminescent bacterium (vibrio fisheri) that grows inside of it to shed light on the …

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New ocean observations improve understanding of motion

Oceanographers commonly calculate large scale surface ocean circulation from satellite sea level information using a concept called “geostrophy,” which describes the relationship between oceanic surface flows and sea level gradient. Conversely, researchers rely on data from in-water current meters to measure smaller scale motion. New research led by University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa oceanographer Bo Qiu has determined from observational …

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Hawaiʻi water research scholarship available

Applications are now being accepted for the L. Stephen Lau Water Research Endowed Scholarship, which will be awarded in fall 2017. The award amount is $1,500. The scholarship was established with funds endowed to the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa by L. Stephen Lau and Virginia May Lau of Honolulu. Lau is emeritus professor of civil and environmental engineering at …

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HIMB to manage newly designated Heʻeia National Estuarine Research Reserve

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced today a new National Estuarine Research Reserve, the 29th in the system, and the first in more than six years. Estuarine reserves protect a section of an estuary and provide a living laboratory to explore and understand the important areas where rivers meet the sea. The reserve will be managed in partnership with …

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