The Simons Foundation has awarded Edward DeLong and David Karl $40 million to lead the Simons Collaboration on Ocean Processes and Ecology (SCOPE), making it the largest private foundation gift UH has ever received. SCOPE aims to further our understanding of the microscopic organisms that inhabit every drop of seawater and how those creatures control the movement and exchange of energy and nutrients, from the surface waters to the deep sea. Learn more in this UH Mānoa video, and read about it (with more news links here).
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One of the most diverse families in the ocean today—marine bivalve mollusks known as Lucinidae (or lucinids)—originated more than 400 million years ago in the Silurian period, with adaptations and life habits like those of its modern members. Publishing in Geology, G&G researcher Steven Stanley tracks the remarkable evolutionary expansion of the lucinids through significant symbiotic relationships. The Lucinidae remained at very low diversity until the rise of mangroves and seagrasses near the end of the Cretaceous. Especially important in their diversification was the lucinids’ development of a symbiotic relationship with seagrasses where they took advantage of the oxygen-poor, sulfide-rich sediments below roots and rhizomes.
During the “supermoon” of Sunday 10 August the moon was 221,765 miles from Earth, measured center to center, which is the closest the moon will get to our planet this year. Katie Robinson gets a lot closer than that, in a way: she studies moon rocks as a graduate assistant at HIGP. UH has about 120 grams of moon rocks brought here in 1990 for study, and Robinson is investigating the presence of apatite, a mineral that contains water, in the sample. “You get used to working on these tiny little samples …,” she said. “And then you go outside and you look up and you go, ‘Wow, my rocks are from there. My samples are from there. I’m holding moon rocks!’ You kind of remember why you got into it in the first place.”
International Pacific Research Center (IPRC) researchers Axel Timmermann and Yoshimitsu Chikamoto partnered with colleagues at the University of New South Wales and University of Hawai‘i to solve the puzzle of why, contrary to climate model projections, observations show that in recent years the Pacific trade winds have strengthened, the eastern Pacific has cooled, and sea level has risen in the western Pacific. The source of these trends, they have found, is rapid warming of the Atlantic Ocean. Their findings from observations and modeling experiments are published in an online issue of Nature Climate Change.
Track tropical storm and hurricane development and movement at the Central Pacific Hurricane Center. The 2014 hurricane season begins on 01 June and ends on 30 November. To help you prepare for hurricanes (and other natural hazards such as earthquakes, tsunami, and floods from other causes), the UH Sea Grant College Program’s Homeowner’s Handbook to Prepare for Natural Hazards is available as a PDF or printed book. Keep track of weather conditions at the Hawai‘i Beach Hazard Forecast Site, the Meteorology Weather Server, and the Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System.
Please visit SOEST in the News: 2014 for archived news articles, with links to previous years.
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The Dean’s Overview of the School
For the latest on seminars, recent grants, thesis & dissertation defenses, and lectures and events open to the public, please see the weekly SOEST Bulletin.
Hawai‘i Space Lecture Series
Institute for Astronomy (IfA)
This FREE lecture is open
to the public. For more information, please see
the flyer PDF.
NASA has announced the selection of seven science instruments for the Mars 2020 rover chosen from a field of 58 proposals received from researchers and engineers worldwide. Among the selections are the Mastcam-Z, an advanced camera system, with team volcanologist HIGP’s Sarah Fagents who will work with the team's principal investigator Jim Bell (School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University). Also selected is the SuperCam instrument, with Raman and fluorescence spectroscopy experts HIGP’s Shiv Sharma and Anupam Misra who will work with the team's principal investigator Roger Wiens (Los Alamos National Laboratory).
HI2: University of Hawai‘i Innovation Initiative
This special supplement to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser showcases the UH Innovation Initiative — HI2 — and highlights several units and programs of the School. Please read the online publication here.