Sep 06 2010
A unique and first of its kind project has set sail from the coast of Haifa. The Nautilus - a research ship owned by oceanographer Robert Ballard, who discovered the wreck of the RMS Titanic - has set out on a voyage to research the sea floor off the coast of Israel, in those areas in which Israel has rights (which reach beyond the territorial waters). Heading this expedition are marine researchers from the Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences at the University of Haifa.
Nautilus is a research ship fully equipped with state-of-the-art technologies for sea-floor research, and includes diving robots, elaborate control rooms and more. Taking Ballard’s place as captain of the ship on this voyage is Israel Prize winner and Director of the Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences, Prof. Zvi Ben-Avraham. He will be heading the ship over the coming two weeks, during which time the team will study the Mediterranean floor. Prof. Ben-Avraham, along with the School’s scientists, mapped out each and every step of this expedition.
“This unique collaboration gives expression to the central emphasis that the University of Haifa has decided to place on marine research, a resource that promises many discoveries in a variety of areas: economy, medicine, energy, biology, and more. The future is in the sea and this voyage is a first step towards understanding the mystery of a region that is so close to us yet still so far and unknown,” said Prof. Aaron Ben-Ze’ev, President of the University of Haifa.
Watch the underwater research live and get continuous updates on Nautilus Live
Photos (by Arik Baltinester):Above: Senior faculty of the University and the Nautilus diving robots
Below: Senior faculty with the Nautilus in the background. L-R: University Rector, Prof. Yossi Ben-Artzi; President Prof. Aaron Ben-Ze’ev; Director of the School of Marine Sciences, Prof. Zvi Ben-Avraham; incoming Rector Prof. David Faraggi; Vice President of External Relations and Resource Development Mr. Amos Gaver