Black Sea News

Walter Munk, 2017 (Photo: Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego)

Walter Munk: 1917-2019

visiting intellectuals, artists, and scientists would gather to discuss ideas. The two were inseparable in the field as well. Improbably, the couple trekked across the Soviet Union in a Land Rover at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 to reach an oceanographic station at Gelendsik, near the Black Sea. They lived in a Samoan fale when Walter conducted fieldwork on the origin of very long Pacific swells described in the educational film, “Waves Across the Pacific.” The two were partners in thawing the Cold War as they could, serving as science ambassadors through visits to colleagues

(Photo: Rodrigo Pacheco-Ruiz)

MMT: Image Processing in Focus

it has taken another step forward.In a long-term collaboration, of more than a decade, between industry and academic research, MMT and Reach have conducted deep sea (up to 2,200 meters deep) high resolution photogrammetric surveys of more than sixty historically important shipwrecks in the Bulgarian Black Sea between 2016 and 2017.The Black Sea Maritime Archaeology Project (Black Sea MAP), funded by the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust and led by the University of Southampton’s Centre for Maritime Archaeology, has uncovered new archaeological and scientific information spanning more than two millenia

(Photo by Vasilis Mentogianis / RPM Nautical Foundation)

Ancient Shipwrecks Found in Greek Waters Tell Tale of Trade Routes

century. Most are dated to the Greek, Roman and Byzantine eras.Although shipwrecks can be seen together in the Aegean, until now such a large number have not been found together.Experts say they weave an exciting tale of how ships full of cargo travelling through the Aegean, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea met their fate in sudden storms and surrounded by rocky cliffs in the area."The excitement is difficult to describe, I mean, it was just incredible. We knew that we had stumbled upon something that was going to change the history books," said underwater archaeologist and co-director of

In an earlier NOAA-funded project, derelict fishing gear and other large marine debris were removed from remote Alaskan shorelines by the Gulf of Alaska Keeper. (Photo: NOAA)

NOAA Backs Marine Debris Removal/Research

what effects microplastic consumption has on oysters, what types of microplastics are most likely to be consumed by oysters, and increase understanding of how microplastics are impacting marine resources.   University of North Carolina at Wilmington ($289,098) will assess if  black sea bass consume contaminated microplastics and if microplastics are being transferred between prey and predator species.   Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution ($192,690) will assess the role of seasonal phytoplankton blooms in increasing the availability of microplastics for sea scallop

ROV Hatchet Black Sea MAP Investigative Underwater Vehicle (Credit: Martin Hartley)

Final Cruise Sets Sail for Black Sea MAP

One of the largest maritime archaeological projects ever staged was launched in 2015 to investigate the changes in the ancient environment of the Black Sea region, including the impact of sea level change during the last glacial cycle.   Isolated from the world’s oceans, as global sea levels fell during the glacial maximum, the Black Sea was then reconnected as the earth warmed and sea levels rose. How low did the Black Sea waters really fall? How fast did they rise following the reconnection, and what effects did these processes have on human settlements along the shoreline at that

Domenti Apakidze on the Black Sea with his JW Fishers side scan sonar (Photo: JW Fishers)

Sonar Systems Help Search Teams, Scientists and Salvors

what lies on the bottom. It can even be affixed to a diver’s helmet providing topside personnel a clear picture in a low visibility environment, letting them guide the diver directly to the job site.   When two recreational scuba divers went missing off Gonio, a coastal town on the Black Sea, Domenti Apakidze was working on a research project with the State Hydrographic Service in the Republic of Georgia. Domenti and his team offered to assist in the search using their JW Fishers SSS-100K/600K side scan. This sonar is a tool commonly used in hydrographic surveys. It creates a detailed

Source: Russia Defence Ministry

ROV Finds Crashed Jet's Black Box in the Black Sea

Russia has found the main flight recorder from a military plane that crashed into the Black Sea killing all 92 on board, the Defence Ministry said on Tuesday, amid unconfirmed reports that authorities had grounded all aircraft of the same type.   The recorder, one of several reported to be on board, contains information that could help investigators identify the cause of Sunday's crash, which killed dozens of Red Army Choir singers and dancers en route to Syria to entertain Russian troops in the run-up to the New Year.   Investigators have so far said that pilot error or a technical fault

Starcoral Photo NOAA

Changing Climate, Oceans and America’s Fisheries

the coastal communities and seafood businesses that depend on them. With better information on current and future shifts in fish stocks, fisheries managers and fishing industries can better plan for and respond to changing ocean conditions. But not all change is bad: As southern fish species like black sea bass spread northward along the East Coast, they may provide opportunities for additional commercial or recreational fisheries. Changing conditions may also stimulate more opportunities for other marine related businesses, such as fish and shellfish farming. Better information on when, where and

Gazprom: Work on Underwater Section of Turkstream to Begin in H2 2017

for Europe, will come on stream by the end of 2019. Where that gas from the second line will come ashore in Europe has yet to be finally determined. Gazprom, Italian energy firm Edison and Greek gas retailer DEPA in February signed a memorandum of understanding on natural gas deliveries via the Black Sea to Greece, and from Greece to Italy. Gazprom, along with DEPA and Edison, will decide in December on the routes and delivery points into Europe, Miller said. "In December...we will make a decision how we will work. It's about gas supplies via Turkey towards the Turkish-Greek border and

A photogrammetric model of a Byzantine wreck discovered in 95m of water illustrating the Surveyor ROV passing over it gathering 3D data. Constructed from photographs taken by cameras on the ROV. (Model Rodrigo Pacheco-Ruiz). ©Black Sea Maritime Archaeology Project

ROV Sets Records for Depth and Speed

range of SROV’s capabilities. It was developed for the oil and gas industry but is capable to inspect and explore various seabed mapping projects, Oskarsson said, adding that the new depth and speed records is a great success for the company.   Down to 1,670 meters below the surface in the Black sea, over 40 shipwrecks were found and some had never been seen before. Thanks’ to the anoxic conditions of the Black Sea the preservation was astonishing. This expedition provided new data on the maritime interconnectivity of Black Sea coastal communities and manifest ways of life and seafaring

European Scientists Coordinate Open Ocean Observatories

from the ocean’s surface, through the water column to sub-seafloor across geo-hazard, physical, biogeochemical and ecological themes, with various local emphases. EMSO planning spans from polar to sub-tropical climatic zones and from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. This offers a broad spectrum of study areas across diverse environments. Critically, the systems can send data to land through seafloor telecommunication cables or satellite connections from surface buoys. Test sites are also fundamental facilities for devices being incorporated into EMSO nodes

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