A ship that explores the deep sea is spending the next few days docked in Manhattan, and then will head out on an expedition that will be covered live online. NY1's Erin Clarke filed the following report.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Okeanos Explorer, which is currently docked in Lower Manhattan, is helping scientists reveal the secrets of the Earth's oceans. Researchers say 95 percent of the oceans are unexplored and unknown.
"There are a lot of things out there that we don't know about. As an example, if we go to a variety of places in the world, there is a high probability that we're going to find new species of fish, new species of coral that we've never seen before," says Dave Lovalvo, the head of the NOAA Deep Submergence Program.
The Okeanos Explorer has just returned from a 17-day exploration of the Atlantic Ocean, where robots descended thousands of feet to explore the depths of the ocean. The data will help researchers better understand the ocean and how it affects us.
"The health of the ocean matters to everyone, right? The ocean is what controls our climate, it controls our temperature," Lovalvo says.
On Saturday, crew members who are on break until the next expedition welcomed a group of teenage Navy sea cadets from Brooklyn.
"Being on this ship today, it made me want to be a part of it and I'm not even a water person because I can't swim," says Adora Murray, a Navy sea cadet. "But it makes me want to go into it and do probably the technology part, because there's so many things that you don't get to see."
For those not lucky enough to get on board, there's another way to get an up-close experience with Okeanos. A ball on the deck of the ship contains a satellite that will beam everything the ship sees to a website that anyone can access.
Right now, there is not a whole lot to see on the website, but that will change soon. On August 1, the next expedition begins to underwater canyons and a sea mountain off the northeast coast.
"Not only will they see sea floor videos live, they will also hear the voices of scientist, some on this ship, many more ashore who are all connected and they're commenting on what they're seeing," says Fred Gorell, a public affairs officer for NOAA Exploration and Research.
NOAA hopes the live stream will not only provide a glimpse of the work its scientists are doing, but perhaps peak the interest of future researchers.
The Okeanos' progress can be followed at oceanexplorer.noaa.gov/okeanos.