Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) is a nonprofit research institution where scientists and engineers work together to explore and study the sea. In the words of founder David Packard: "The mission of MBARI is to achieve and maintain a position as a world center for advanced research and education in ocean science and technology, and to do so through the development of better instruments, systems, and methods for scientific research in the deep waters of the ocean." MBARI scientists and engineers conduct multidisciplinary research in a variety of fields, including marine biology, marine chemistry, marine geology, physical oceanography, and marine technology. Located in Moss Landing, California, MBARI is supported primarily by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

Ocean “Pingos”

Geologist Charles Paull (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute) investigates geologic features similar to pingos (Earth covered ice mounds found in the Arctic) on the Arctic Ocean floor where methane—a powerful greenhouse...

Deep-Sea Urchin

This deep-sea urchin ( Echinocrepis rostrata ) is an important “bulldozer.” It turns over sediment and exposes prey as it moves across the ocean floor, leaving a trail of tracks behind. This photo was taken about 220...

Ocean Acidification with Dr. Francisco Chavez

Dr. Francisco Chavez of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute estimates that a million tons of CO 2 enter the ocean hourly. His studies in Peru explore the phenomenon of ocean acidification, which occurs when waters...

Grimpoteuthis, The Dumbo Octopus

The dumbo octopus ( Grimpoteuthis ) is a deep sea animal that lives on the ocean floor at extreme depths of 9,800 to 13,000 feet. They are small animals, around 8 inches tall, and have a pair of fins located on their mantle—...

Big Red Jellyfish

Marine biologists from MBARI nicknamed this startlingly large jellyfish—which grows over one meter (three feet) in diameter—"big red." It would be hard to miss, except that it lives at depths of 650 to 1,500 meters (2,000 to...

Red Jellyfish

Sea jellies such as this one in the genus Benthocodon are commonly seen on or near the seafloor in the Monterey Canyon off central California. Some jellies in this genus feed on animals that live in seafloor sediment. Learn...

Tubeworms on a Hydrothermal Vent

Riftia tubeworm ( Riftia pachyptila ) colonies grow where hot, mineral-laden water flows out of the seafloor in undersea hot springs—such as the Guymas Basin of the Gulf of California at 2,000 meters (6562 feet), where MBARI...

Autonomous Underwater Vehicle in Gulf of Mexico

An autonomous underwater vehicle from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) being launched from the NOAA Ship Gordon Gunter in the Gulf of Mexico. More about the Gulf oil spill can be found in our Gulf oil...