Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Chris Welsh

Chief Pilot, Virgin Oceanic

Going Where Only Two Men Have Gone Before:
Five Dives, Five Ocean Basins, One Planet

Wednesday — April 27, 2011
Pacific Forum — 3:00 p.m.

Virgin Oceanic has announced plans to send a one-person submersible (designed by Graham Hawkes) to the deepest point in each of the world's five ocean basins, starting with the Mariana Trench in the Pacific. The submersible, designed to fly more like a jet than an airship, will be able to range nearly 10 kilometers and bring back HD footage of previously unvisited terrain. We have teamed with a number of scientists and are interested in more collaborators to provide advice and insight to the expedition and to maximize the science value of the expedition. Presently the scientific payload includes images and free vehicles that will collect data, water, sediment and biological samples. Additional scientific payloads, sensor, and samplers are possible; we are looking to you, the scientific community for additional input. Chris Welsh will present Virgin Oceanic's goals, operational plan, present capabilities, and present scientific return with options and possibilities for additional work.


Next: Xavier Mayali