Throughout 2020 humanity had to learn to adapt, as did the Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI). We welcomed our first Executive Director, first formal Advisory Board, and, as the pandemic evolved so did our sea-going expeditions. As a result, Falkor remained one of the only research vessels in the world that operated throughout the year, leading to many notable discoveries. We brought to life stories of hope and wonder during SOI’s first dedicated geographic campaign exploring the beautiful deep waters off Australia. Among them were newsworthy sightings of the world’s longest sea creature, a 45-meter siphonophore; a new coral reef standing taller than the Empire State Building; more than 50 new potential species; and rare video recordings of the Ram’s Horn Squid.
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OUR YEAR IN NUMBERS
Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI) engaged with communities this year around the globe like never before. When R/V Falkor arrived in Australian waters at the beginning of the year, nearly a thousand people came to the Welcome to Country ceremony and public ship tours in collaboration with the Australian National Maritime Museum. In February, SOI participated in the 2020 Ocean Sciences Meeting, introducing our first Executive Director and continuing our alumni event tradition, while also co-hosting the National Ocean Exploration Forum Town Hall and chairing other sessions and presentations.
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