CIMT - Center for Integrated Marine Technologies
Project Manager/Lead Scientist: Francisco Chavez
Lead Engineers: Kent Headley, Tom O'Reilly, and Duane Edgington
This project represents the MBARI component of a proposal submitted to NOAA by the Center for Integrated Marine Technologies (CIMT). The scientific aspects of the proposal focus on the relationship between the oceanography of coastal upwelling systems and marine mammal abundance. The engineering portion addresses technology needed for coastal observatories in general, to solve the problem of connecting and operating the enormous variety of instruments that can be attached to these observatories.
In 2004, the first major science field trial of the MOOS Mooring system will focus on the upper water column, so that completed MOOS subsystems can be field tested with a full science instrument payload but without being directly dependent on the more technically risky cable mooring development schedule.
The science mission for the CIMT deployment will focus on bloom formation inside Monterey Bay. The mooring will be located where blooms potentially reach their maximum levels. Once water enters the bay, it slows and stratifies, leading to optimal conditions for phytoplankton growth. This stratification acts to select for taxonomic groups (pennate diatoms, dinoflagellates) that are capable of producing toxins harmful to humans. Collectively, an array of such moorings may allow Monterey Bay to serve as a useful microcosm for the California coastal upwelling system.