Current Research

Simons Collaboration on Ocean Processes and Ecology (SCOPE) 

SCOPE-shield-draft4a_142px RESEARCH TEAM: SCOPE Investigators
PROJECT DATES: 2014 – 2019
PROJECT SUMMARY: SCOPE is a collaborative effort to advance our understanding of the biology, ecology and biogeochemistry of microbial processes in the oligotrophic North Pacific Ocean. SCOPE will conduct spatially and temporally resolved analyses of biological structure and function at the open ocean field site Station ALOHA, located in the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre. Click here to learn more about our SCOPE research. Funding source: Simons Foundation.


Closing Gaps in Knowledge About Biodiversity and Ecology of the Deep Sea to Better Assess the Impacts of Deep-Sea Mining (aka DeepCCZ) 


RESEARCH TEAM: Craig Smith (UH), Jeff Drazen (UH), Matthew Church (UM), Andrew Sweetman (Heriot Watt), Adrian Glover (London Natural History Museum), Thomas Dahlgren (U. Gothenburg)
PROJECT DATES: 2017-2019
PROJECT SUMMARY: More than one million square kilometers of the abyssal Pacific seafloor, in a region termed the Clarion-Clipperton Zone (CCZ), have been identified for possible seafloor nodule mining. These nodules are a potential source of copper, nickel, cobalt, iron, manganese and rare earth elements, all commercially valuable resources. This project is investigating the wealth of organisms on seafloor plains and seamounts in areas currently designated as “no-mining areas” in the western CCZ. A major goal is to determine whether these protected areas are adequate to conserve the biodiversity in the region from the destructive activities of seafloor mining. Our group is studying microbial diversity and function associated with seafloor habitats in the western CCZ. Click here to learn more about our DeepCCZ research. Funding source: Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.