RSMAS Beat Notebook: Feb. 23

In commemoration of the 200th birthday of the father of modern evolutionary theory, Charles Darwin: Live and in Concert played at the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science last Monday afternoon. The one-man musical was filled with original songs, science and madness. This event was free and opened to the public.

David Thoreson, explorer and Blue Water Studios photographer and filmmaker, came to RSMAS Wednesday afternoon to speak as part of the 2009 Sea Secrets Lecture Series. Thoreson gave his perspective on polar exploration through his stunning pictures and accounts of adventure. He also shared his knowledge on how climate change is shining new light on this region. The lecture, which took place at 6 p.m., was free and opened to the public.

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) recently awarded a $3.75 million grant to support satellite-based research studies on internal waves and typhoons in the Western Pacific Ocean. Administered over a period of three years, the ONR grant will help fund greater utilization of satellite data in a variety of projects, including one in Southeast Asia conducted by scientists from RSMAS in collaboration with Taiwanese universities that will take a better look at typhoon patterns.

Research funded by multiple agencies and conducted by RSMAS along with the university’s Miller School of Medicine found that swimmers using public ocean beaches increase their risk for exposure to staph organisms (including likelihood of staph infections) once they enter the water. The research team recommends taking precautions to reduce the risk of infection by showering thoroughly before entering the water and after getting out. More research is needed to understand how long staph can live in coastal waters and the infection rate associated with the beach exposures.