News

Mesobot, Follow that Jellyfish! New robot will track animals in the ocean twilight zone

By Kathryn Baltes | March 13, 2019
Illustration of Mesobot robot, an oblong yellow shape

The idea for the Mesobot sprang from a somewhat tongue-in-cheek request. Dana Yoerger, a scientist and engineer at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, was having a chat with his WHOI colleague Larry Madin—a marine biologist. Madin spent much of his career scuba diving to get close to his research subjects: gelatinous animals such as jellyfish and salps.

Read More

Chasing Ocean ‘Snowflakes’: New devices measure particles with key role in climate change

By Kathryn Baltes | March 13, 2019
Illustration of MINION instrument in the water column

Below the ocean’s surface, sunlight quickly grows dim. But if you could shine a flashlight through the watery darkness, you might find yourself in an unexpected blizzard: a tempest of tiny underwater particles known as marine snow.

Read More

Round Up the Unusual Suspects: DNA forensics identifies unknown deep-sea organisms

By Kathryn Baltes | February 27, 2019
Annette Govindarajan pipettes twilight zone samples

Annette Govindarajan is a kind of marine detective. She tracks down animals living in different parts of the ocean. For her, the largely unexplored ocean twilight zone—the vast, dimly lit region 650 to 3,280 feet (200 to 1,000 meters) below the surface—still harbors many species yet to be discovered and identified.

Read More

The Deep-See Peers into the Depths: A new vehicle illuminates life hidden in the ocean twilight zone

By Kathryn Baltes | February 26, 2019
WHOI mechanical engineer Kaitlyn Tradd sits on the new towed vehicle Deep-See

In the ocean’s shadowy depths lies one of the Earth’s last frontiers: the ocean twilight zone. It’s a vast swath of water extending throughout the world’s oceans from 650 to 3,280 feet (200 to 1,000 meters) below the surface, and it abounds with life: small but fierce-looking fish, giant glowing jellies, and microscopic animals that feed marine life higher up the ocean’s food web.

Read More

Gothamist: Meet The Freaky ‘Twilight Zone’ Sea Creatures Eating Our Carbon Emissions

By Kathryn Baltes | February 12, 2019

On February 8th, Gothamis published an article about the how the ocean’s twilight zone impacts the carbon cycle with featured photos by WHOI post-doc Paul Caiger.

Read More

The New York Times: Visitors from the Ocean’s Twilight Zone

By Ken Kostel | November 27, 2018
New York Times

On Thanksgiving Day, the New York Times published an online article about the ocean’s twilight zone that featured photos by WHOI post-doc Paul Caiger of just some of the amazing organisms that call the midwater home.

Read More

Twilight Zone at the Microsoft Faculty Research Summit

By Ken Kostel | October 9, 2018
Mark Abbott

WHOI President & Director Mark Abbott attended the 2018 Microsoft Research Faculty Summit in Redmond, Wash., recently and took a moment to discuss application of new technologies and platforms to the design, test, and deployment of ocean observing systems and to improving understanding of the ocean twilight zone.

Read More

Dissecting the Deep-See

By Veronique LaCapra | September 27, 2018

The Deep-See is a new, sensor-filled platform for observing animals in the ocean twilight zone and estimating their biomass (amount) and biodiversity (species or type). The vehicle is towed behind a research ship using an electro-optical cable that can transmit data back to scientists on board in real time. Weighing about 2,500 pounds and extending 16 feet…

Read More

Entering the Twilight Zone at the UN

By Ken Kostel | September 19, 2018

The Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) on an international legally binding instrument (ILBI) under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ): The name doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. It is, however, quite possibly the best chance for the…

Read More

An Unexpected Honeymoon

By Ken Kostel | September 12, 2018
Muntsa Marti

These last several weeks have been hectic and at the same time very exciting, as they included a wedding (my own, to be precise) and a big move from Barcelona to Falmouth, Massachusetts, where I am now a Postdoctoral Investigator at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). However, I didn’t spend much time in my…

Read More

In the News

2018-08-04
It’s ‘the last frontier on Earth that’s truly not well understood,’ and scientists are about to explore it
The Boston Globe

2018-06-19
Why Great White Sharks Hang Out in Warm Whirlpools
National Geographic News

2018-04-22
Into the Darkness
Cape Cod Times

2018-04-16
Scientists Get Major Gift to Study the Twilight Zone
WCAI NPR

2018-04-13
With $35M grant, WHOI scientists will dive to the edge of ocean's light
Cape Cod Times

2018-04-12
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution gets $35m to explore deep reaches
Boston Globe

2018-04-12
Deep-sea project wins prestigious funding at Vancouver TED conference
The Globe & Mail

2018-02-26
The ocean’s ‘twighlight zone’ faces fishing threat
News Deeply

2018-02-16
Study finds high levels of microplastics in mesopelagic fish
R&D

2017-08-21
The deep seas are alive with light
New York Times

2017-08-18
What happens in the sea during a solar eclipse?
Deep Sea News

2017-05-03
In disposable mucus houses, these zooplankton filter the oceans
New York Times

2017-01-16
The race to fish the larder living in the ‘twilight zone’
BBC

2016-08-15
Unraveling the mystery of the ocean’s twilight zone
Wired

2016-09-26
Mysterious ocean blobs aren’t so mysterious
The Atlantic

2016-03-08
Fishing the deep. Is it time to start fishing the deep sea? Some scientists are urging caution.
Hakai magazine

2015-06-29
Dark region of ocean may shed light on climate change and other issues
New York Times

2015-06-29
An ocean mystery in the trillions
New York Times

2014-02-09
Fish in the ocean cast new light on ocean ecosystems
The Conversation