HONOLULU (KHON2) — National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) vessel More rainy has finally left for the most distant journey of its 52-year history.
Originally scheduled for 2020the ship is on a 3,307 nautical mile expedition in the Western Pacific to map waters and monitor reefs. The ship departed Honolulu, Hawaii on March 26.
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This is at Rainier first multidisciplinary expedition to Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. A team of scientists on board will map the waters from shore to nearly 2,000 meters deep. The data collected during this voyage will contribute to the safety of navigation as well as the conservation of coral habitat and fisheries; it will also support storm surge and tsunami modeling.
“at Rainier the Western Pacific deployment is an exciting integration of multiple NOAA missions that breaks down traditional interdisciplinary boundaries,” said Rear Admiral Benjamin Evans, Director of the Office of Coast Survey. “This will serve as an example of the mapping campaigns envisaged under the NOMEC Implementation Plan and the Seabed GEBCO 2030 project.”
This season on the pitch, the team will collect high resolution bathymetric data which will update nautical charting products and thereby help promote maritime safety. The team will also take sea surface level measurements. According to NOAA, many areas in the region have not been mapped for decades or have never been mapped to modern standards.
Last season in the field, More rainy traveled to Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument to support dive operations for coral reef research. The 2019 expedition too provided an update on the development of lava flows.
at Rainier the data will be made available both locally and for larger national and global initiatives regarding comprehensive seabed mapping.
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To learn more about NOAA’s full 2022 hydrographic survey season, visit their story map.