Center For Ocean Sciences Education Excellence COSEE TEK
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Ocean Science and Technology Day at the Mystic Aquarium - 08.19.2012

COSEE-TEK sponsored its first annual Ocean Science and Technology Day at the Mystic Aquarium on Friday, August 3, 2012. The event took place on a sweltering day with temperatures in the 90’s and high humidity – neither of which deterred over 3500 visitors to the aquarium that day. COSEE-TEK worked with UConn’s Department of Marine Science to develop 10 exhibits and demonstrations that featured ocean science and the technologies. The demonstrations were distributed throughout the aquarium, some strategically positioned to highlight the aquarium’s exhibits. For example, the Arctic Coast exhibit, which features two beluga whales was used to highlight acoustics and visitors were able to monitor a hydrophone installed in the tank to hear the vocalizations of the whales in real time. The following describe the exhibits:

COSEE-TEK information booth

COSEE-TEK Information Booth – Provided Information on the exhibits and served as the evaluation center
Sound of science

The Sound of Science: Marine mammal vocalizations
– Dr. Peter Scheifele

Visitors were able to hear the sounds of the Beluga whales in the tank using high resolution hydrophones and to see how scientists use computers to visualize and analyze these sounds.
bivalve endoscopy

Fantastic Voyage…into a Bivalve: Using endoscopes to observe the physiology of living shellfish
– Dr. Evan Ward and his graduate student Maria Rosa

This demonstration illustrated how scientists are using modern medical technology for ocean science and featured close up video of oyster and mussel feeding behavior.
microscope observations

The Courtship of EVA & BOB: Monitoring the contaminants and biology of Long Island Sound
- Drs. John Hamilton and Penny Vlahos

Visitors learned how teachers are building their own “Basic Observation Buoys” (BOBs) and using new sensors to measure pollution and invasive species in the Sound. They also had the chance to use a video microscope to discover the small invertebrates that live in Long Island Sound.
Long Island Sound mapping

Virtual Underwater Exploration: Using a Google Earth flight simulator to explore underwater maps of Long Island Sound
– Ralph Lewis and Dr. Peter Auster

This site feature the latest underwater maps of the Sound, a chance to virtually explore the seafloor topography by “flying” over them using Google Earth. Underwater video of Long Island Sound captured using NURTEC’s remotely operated vehicles (ROV) was displayed and visitors received a free DVD of this video.
ocean gliders

Glide with the Tide: Ocean gliders that profile coastal watersheds
- Dr. Jim O’Donnell

This exhibit featureed an autonomous underwater glider that had just returned from a two-day mission sampling the Sound.
MySound weather observations

MYSound: Real-time weather, water quality and wave data from Long Island Sound
- Kay Howard-Strobel

This station had a live feed from UConn’s offshore buoy network that provides real time information about the Sound.
ROV pilots in training

Aqua-Bots Afloat: Remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) for ocean research and exploration
- Brae Rafferty

Visitors had a chance to try their hand at “piloting” a small ROV in the Challenge of the Deep pool.

Additional Resources

Informational handout and exhibit map (PDF, 325 KB) for 2012 Ocean Science and Technology Day at the Mystic Aquarium

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