Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Mark Benfield, Ph.D.

Louisiana State University

SERPENT: An Academic-Industrial Partnership to Explore Deep-Sea Life

benfield collage

Wednesday - April 22, 2009

Pacific Forum – 3:00 p.m.

As demand for energy increases, oil companies are moving into the deep-sea to search for new sources of petroleum. Many of the regions where production and exploration are active, are also poorly studied by oceanographers. The presence of stable deepwater platforms and ships equipped with powerful remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) provides a unique opportunity to study life in the deep sea. The SERPENT Project (Scientific Environmental ROV Partnership using Existing Industrial Technology) brings academia and industry together in a collaboration to learn more about marine life. Headquartered in the UK, the SERPENT Project has regional partnerships around the world. The Gulf SERPENT Project is based at Louisiana State University and works with BP, Chevron, and Shell to study plankton and nekton in the mesopelagic and bathypelagic regions of the Gulf of Mexico. This seminar will describe SERPENT research and highlight recent findings in the Gulf of Mexico.


Next: May 6 - Emily Brodsky, Ph.D.