CNR Concept Challenge Finalists

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The finalists of the CNR Concept Challenge–a historic call for innovative ideas to support the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps of the future–were announced at the Naval Future Force Science and Technology Expo in Washington, D.C.

The finalists include  Benjamin Conley, for enhancements to existing thermal-imaging capabilities; Joe Kennedy, for a prototype system that assesses various sources of position, navigating and timing data; and Jim Coward, for a supercontinuum laser source for shipboard protection.

Japan Calls for Maritime Security Meeting

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South China Sea

Japan will host a meeting in September of maritime security organizations worldwide, The Japan Times reported. It will be the first meeting of its kind.

This is a reaction to China’s aggression in the South China Sea.

Japan wishes to maintain maritime order based on the rule of law.

Read the full article here.

Caption: China’s maritime claim (red) and UNCLOS exclusive economic zones (blue) in the South China Sea. (Credit: Goran tek-en/Wikimedia)

Floating Island Concept Tested

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floating islands

MARIN (Maritime Research Institute Netherlands) has tested an innovative concept for a floating mega island. The island comprises 87 large floating triangles that are connected to one another. Together they form a flexible floating island that can be as large as 1 to 5 km in cross-section.

Floating mega islands offer future-proof living and working space at sea for: developing, generating, storing and maintaining sustainable energy (offshore wind, tidal energy, wave energy and floating solar panels); loading and trans-shipping cargo in coastal areas where there is little infrastructure; cultivating food, such as seaweed and fish; and building houses and recreation close to the water.

Antarctic Diving Expedition

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Diving Unlimited

Diving Unlimited International is hosting a dive trip to Antarctica February 19 to March 3, 2018.

Diving medicine, photography and polar specialists will be a part of the educational diving-oriented expedition, which embarks in Ushuaia, Argentina, and sails through the Drake Passage directly to Antarctica.

Learn more here.

Deep-Sea Corals to Help Replenish Shallow Reefs

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coral

The world’s coral reefs are dying at alarming rates. FIU researcher Mauricio Rodriguez-Lanetty believes deep-sea corals could help replenish their more imperiled, shallow counterparts. That’s because shallow reefs are affected by fishing, pollution, global warming and sunscreen more than deep reefs.

Rodriguez-Lanetty’s research team has built the world’s deepest coral nursery residing at 90 ft. below the ocean surface. Using PVC pipe and fiberglass, they have constructed artificial trees in partnership with the Coral Restoration Foundation. Plastic cards dangle from the fiberglass branches where young corals can grow.

These trees were deployed to FIU’s Aquarius Reef Base, the world’s only underwater research lab, off the shores of Islamorada, Florida. NASA astronauts training for the isolated and extreme environments of space at the Aquarius Reef Base planted the trees in 2015.

Since then, FIU scientists and NASA astronauts have regular visits to monitor the progress and maintain the health of the growing corals. It is the first step in finding solutions to one of the oceans’ greatest environmental threats.

Keuka Moves into Offshore Wind

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Keuka

Keuka Research & Development, of the Keuka Energy Group of Companies, has moved from R&D into the U.S. offshore wind arena. The 175-MW wind-power generation project, now under construction at its facility in Palatka, Florida, will soon be based out of Green Cove Springs, Florida. Project completion is scheduled for 2023, at which time it is expected to produce the first utility-scale stored energy. It will also be the first offshore project to produce liquid air instead of electricity.

Testing of the first cold-store working unit will happen by June 2018.

ABS and Bureau Veritas are in the concept design review process of both Keuka Energy’s V-shaped liquid air storage/wind turbine platform, which will be anchored well offshore, and its 300-ton hybrid service vessel, the Tara Allen, which went under construction in 2015 at the Palatka facility.

France Cuts Oil, Gas Licenses

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France oil and gas

France plans to stop granting shale oil and gas exploration licenses at home and in overseas territories, with the goal of increasing the amount of renewables as an energy source, the UN’s Climate Action Programme reported.

There are also proposals to increase the diesel tax and make faster decisions on curtailing pollution.

Read more here.

MATE ROV Competition

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MATE

Sixty-five teams from 17 countries participated in the Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center’s international underwater robotics competition. Top honors in the Explorer (advanced) class went to Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) from Hong Kong, while Watsonville Firefighters’ Seal Team 1272 from Aptos, California, captured first place in the Ranger (intermediate) class.

During the event, held June 23 to 25 in the Viking Aquatics pool at Long Beach City College in Long Beach, California, student teams competed using ROVs that they designed and brought to life.

This year’s ROV competition highlighted the role ROVs play in securing the health and safety of today’s seaports. Participants were also encouraged to think about how this technology may influence the port cities of the future. During the competition, students operated their ROVs to handle tasks such as locating containers that had fallen off a cargo ship, constructing an underwater tunnel, and cleaning up contaminated sediment.

MTS TechSurge

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MTS

If you’re going to be in Norfolk, Virginia, July 19 to 21, check out the MTS TechSurge on Marine Propulsion and Design: Inspirations from Nature. It will be a workshop with breakout sessions.

For more info, contact Kevyan Ann Sly at 202-827-7171 or kevyan.sly@mtssociety.org.

Arctic Shield 2017

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The Coast Guard kicked off Arctic Shield 2017 operations throughout Arctic waters this past weekend with the opening of a forward operating location (FOL) in Kotzebue.

As part of operation Arctic Shield 2017, the Coast Guard will deploy cutters, aircraft and personnel to engage in operations encompassing a variety of Coast Guard missions from Dutch Harbor through the Bering Strait and along the North Slope, including the Northern Alaska Outer Continental Shelf.

The FOL in Kotzebue will enhance the Coast Guard’s operability by allowing pre-staged flight crews from Air Station Kodiak to save critical time and resources when responding to missions in the Arctic region.

Arctic Shield 2017 will include Arctic deployments by the crews of Coast Guard cutters, as well as Coast Guard participation in Operation Arctic Guardian, a multiagency pollution response exercise in Utqiaġvik.

Photo Credit: U.S. Coast Guard/Luke Clayton