Mesophotic Coral Ecosystem ExplorationAugust 11 2014
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Currently trying to figure out how to have the ROV receive the following information about the divers:
-PO2 of rebreather loop
-Decompression status and depth
Perhaps even receive and transmit voice communication transmitted from the diver to the ROV using a 32.768 Khz Upper Sideband receiver.
In 2011, the California Academy of Sciences started an initiative to explore Mesophotic Coral Ecosystems (MCEs) as a critical science gap. It was concluded that a small interdisciplinary team would pilot an initiative to explore these critical ecosystems. The team has since completed multiple successful expeditions to mesophotic reefs. These expeditions have combined training, sample collections, live animal collections, photo and video documentation, as well as the prototyping of collection and diving equipment. Multiple new species of fishes and invertebrates have been discovered, plans for public aquaria exhibits focused on MCEs have been formulated, and digital assets are being utilized for scientific reference and public display. In only a few years of studying MCEs, it is apparent that MCEs are facing similar anthropomorphic pressures as shallow coral ecosystems. Threats to MCEs are apparent near coastal development with both garbage and sediment runoff spreading down to the deeper reefs. MCEs appear to be one of the next global frontiers for discovery. Given the relatively small amount of research being conducted on MCEs, collaboration between interdisciplinary scientists with experience working on MCEs may produce important results that inform resource managers and the subsequent conservation of MCEs.