The small amount of light that reaches the twilight zone plays an important role in governing the rhythms and pulses of life. This light cues animals when to migrate, helps them hide, and much more. 

Instruments that can measure these barely perceptible levels of light are notoriously expensive and difficult to handle, however, so there are currently few direct measurements of light in the twilight zone. To fill those gaps in knowledge, the OTZ team is working with researchers at MIT to create low-cost, easy-to-use radiometers. Once deployed, these tools will let virtually any of the team’s underwater vehicles become an ultra-sensitive light sensor.

Ocean Surface
Radiometers on the side of autonomous vehicle Mesobot as it is launched.