GLOBE Philippines Explores the Inner Space of the Celebes Sea
GLOBE cooperating organizations The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA),National Geographic Society and Filipino and American scientists are currently on a deep sea expedition to learn about the marine biodiversity in the 'Coral Triangle,' a largely unexplored area in the Celebes Sea, south of Mindanao Island, Philippines.
This first-of-a-kind marine exploration will be conducted by eight Filipino and five U.S. scientists from 27 September – 16 October 2007. Researchers, using conventional diving techniques as well as remotely operated vehicles that will take samples and pictures at depths of up to 600 meters, hope to learn more about the diversity of life in this underwater realm. The National Geographic Society will have a film crew on the expedition and plans to make an hour-long television program and a feature article in the National Geographic Magazine.
For a wide range of resources that convey the excitement of ocean exploration and discovery visit NOAA's Ocean Explorer Web site. Teachers of grades 5-12 can access lesson plans for teachers to engage students in hands-on, inquiry-based activities related to the current expedition.
Caron De Mars, Environment, Science and Technology Officer of the U.S. Embassy in Manila, participated in the expedition and ensured that GLOBE students in the Philippines were included. Working with Philippines GLOBE Country Coordinator Monica Sabio, Ms. De Mars arranged a tour of the ship for GLOBE students and their teachers from the Manila Campus of the Philippines Science High School prior to the departure of the expedition. Students from GLOBE schools in the Philippines are following the progress of the mission through the expedition Web site, which features detailed mission logs by Ms. De Mars and expedition scientists reporting the technical aspects of the dive, as well as the exhilarating discovery of new species that may have been isolated for millions of years!
Ms. Sabio commented that, "The Ocean Explorer Web site provides a great opportunity for students to see and receive updates about what's happening onboard right from their classrooms." The expedition hopes to visit with GLOBE schools in the Coral Triangle area if time permits. GLOBE encourages students and teachers to participate in the expedition by visiting 2007: Exploring the Inner Space of the Celebes Sea where, by selecting 'Ask an Explorer,' GLOBE students around the world can directly communicate with members of the expedition. Through Web logs and compelling images, videos and podcasts, the Celebes Sea Expedition provides a unique opportunity for students to become active underwater explorers alongside an international team of deep sea scientists.
For more information about GLOBE Program activities studying marine biodiversity and other extreme environments, visit GLOBE's FLEXE project.
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03 October 2007