Learning about the depths

Published: Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 08:23 AM.

“Hopefully we will inspire some of you to learn to dive and be involved with marine science,” said one of the underwater scientists as fish, grouper, a barracuda and others swam by the hatch window they were showing the students.

The lab is the latest innovation in underwater research, a subject Maura Mahan, whose father is a marine scientist, was most interested to observe.

“I love all sciences,” the high school junior said. “I come from a long line of curious people. I want to be a vet; I want to work with maybe lizards and in herpetology.

“I think this was very interesting and gives people a chance to see if they want to pursue being a scientist. I mostly learned how research has changed.”

The chance to connect and communicate with the Aquarius and its current research team – the crew will speak to 28 schools from across the country during their seven days underwater at depths where the pressure is two-and-a-half times greater than the surface – came from a self-described “science nerd.”

Senior Sawyer Raffield wears an affinity for science, marine science in particular, like a tailored jacket.

He came across the Aquarius and its mission on the Internet.

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