2021 Technology Demonstration: Meet the Explorers!

On Wednesday, May 5 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT, join a live event introducing the 2021 Technology Demonstration. NOAA Ocean Exploration’s Mike White, Meredith Everett of the NOAA Northwest Fisheries Science Center, Russell Smith of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and Tim Shank of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution will discuss the technologies that will be tested on the expedition and the potential of these technologies for improving our collective understanding of both the ocean here on Earth, and possibly even oceans on other planets. The session will conclude with a question and answer session.

Join the virtual event online through one of the following platforms:


The ocean covers approximately 70% of Earth’s surface and plays a critical role in supporting life on our planet, yet our understanding of it remains limited. Through ocean exploration, we collect data and information needed to address both current and emerging science and management needs. The challenges met while exploring the ocean can also provide the impetus for new technologies and engineering innovations that can be applied in other situations — including the exploration of oceans on other planets.

This public talk introduces the 2021 Technology Demonstration, which will take place May 14-27, 2021. NOAA Ocean Exploration will lead this expedition aboard NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer with the goal of advancing innovative technologies for exploration. Priorities of the expedition include completing field engineering trials for Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution’s autonomous underwater vehicles, Orpheus and Eurydice; these vehicles are equipped with a vision-based navigation software system from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, similar to the Terrain Relative Navigation used on the Mars Perseverance rover. The expedition will also provide an opportunity to pilot environmental DNA (eDNA) field sampling protocols on Okeanos Explorer. Night operations will focus on mapping priority areas between Port Canaveral, Florida, and Norfolk, Virginia, including the Blake Plateau. The 2021 Technology Demonstration is the first expedition for the NOAA Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute on a NOAA vessel.

To view or download a recording of the event, visit this page.

For more information about the 2021 Technology Demonstration, visit the expedition webpage.