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The Ocean Blog

An X-ray image of a Monterey skate ( Raja montereyensis ) reveals a spine that extends like a tail out from the pelvic fin. The skeletons of skates, rays, chimaeras, and sharks are made of cartilage...
With the sun in its beak, a raven figurehead points the way for the Raven Spirit canoe, now on display at the Smithsonian Institution. More about raven spirit can be found in our Raven Spirit...
Building the Smithsonian's Sant Ocean Hall --like any major exhibition--was a major undertaking. Over the course of five years, it required hundreds of people with a vast array of skills and...
This illustration shows how Scarlet Knight , the first unmanned, underwater robot or glider to cross an ocean basin, faced an entire fleet of fishing ships, equipped with nets, threatening the glider...
Follow an artist from inspiration to installation in this short video. It features the work in the exhibit, " The Bright Beneath: The Luminous Art of Shih Chieh Huang ," at the Smithsonian's National...
The Raven Spirit canoe is now prominently displayed in the Smithsonian Institution’s Sant Ocean Hall—a reminder of how native peoples of the North Pacific honored and depended on the bounty of the...
Decorated ceremonial regalia—like this eagle claw holding a salmon, and the sculpin headdress—symbolize the importance of ocean fish to Native communities. More about raven spirit can be found in our...
"Leatherback turtles are the oldest, deepest-diving and widest-ranging of all sea turtles, with a lineage that dates back over 100 million years. We can only imagine all that this species has seen...
This is the world’s first unmanned, underwater robot—or “glider”—to cross an ocean basin, the pioneering Scarlet Knight . The robotic glider, also known as RU27, can dive to depths of 200 meters (660...
The first underwater robotic vehicle—or “glider”—to cross an ocean is the centerpiece of a new exhibit at the Smithsonian. Rutgers University professor Scott Glenn explains that the technology is now...
The robotic underwater glider Scarlet Knight crossed the Atlantic over the course of several months in 2009.
Master carver Douglas Chilton rides at the prow of his creation—the Raven Spirit canoe—at its ceremonial launch in Washington, D.C. The canoe is now on display in the Smithsonian’s Sant Ocean Hall...
The elongated body, characteristic long and narrow snout, and small teeth make the slender snipe eel ( Nemichthys scolopaceus ) easily identifiable in this X-ray image. Snipe eels live at great...
A Rutgers freshman Engineering student prepares the Scarlet Knight’s internal electronics for sea trials. Undergraduates worked on the project through the Coastal Ocean Observation Lab—known to...
The distinctive form of a winghead shark ( Eusphyra blochii ) is revealed by an X-ray image. The Winghead Shark, one of about ten species of hammerhead sharks, has its eyes set at the tips of its...
Watch the Smithsonian's Sant Ocean Hall come to life in this two minute time lapse video. The Sant Ocean Hall is the National Museum of Natural History's largest exhibit, providing visitors with a...
There are different types of beaches and multiple factors that influence the formation of sand. Many beaches may look alike, but they are actually very different from each other. Wave patterns,...
"Wild manatees in Belize are not used to humans. Living miles offshore in mangroves, they remain shy and elusive. After weeks searching and waiting for an opportunity to photograph them, I was...
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