Since joining the Ocean Physics Laboratory (OPL) as a graduate student and now as a researcher, I have been studying various oceanographic
topics such as: theoretical optics and bio-optics, temporal and spatial variability, bottom boundary layers
and sediment resuspension, internal solitary waves, frontal processes, thermodynamics, biogeochemical cycling,
and ecosystem dynamics and harmful algal blooms. I have also been active in the area of ocean technologies,
i.e., sensor development and testing, observatory system design, and anti-biofouling methods. I am especially
interested in interdisciplinary coastal ocean experiments because they enable the study of physical processes
(e.g., air-sea interaction, wind mixing, surface and internal gravity waves, tides, sediment resuspension,
mesoscale advection and mixing) coupled with bio-optical responses, which are important for establishing an
understanding of particulate (including organisms, sediment, and contaminants) movement and distribution in
the water column and along the ocean bottom. The results have value for assessing various aspects of the
global carbon budget, environmental impacts, and ultimately the role of the coastal ocean in global climate
change, as particulate motion influences organic matter and primary production.
Currently, I am working on the
HyCODE and MOSEAN experiments.
HyCODE is an ONR sponsored project; it is a
five-year ONR initiative, which began in January 1999. HyCODE is designed to utilize hyperspectral imagery to
improve understanding of the diverse processes controlling inherent optical properties (IOPs) in the coastal
ocean. The program will also develop operational ocean color algorithms in both the optically-shallow ocean
(i.e., where the signal detected by the satellite sensor is affected by the seafloor) and the optically-deep
ocean (i.e., where the signal detected by the satellite sensor is not directly affected by the seafloor).
MOSEAN is a NOPP-funded experiment designed to develop and test relatively small, lightweight optical and chemical
sensors for autonomous deployment. We have deployed these new instruments on a shallow-water mooring in the
Santa Barbara Channel. Data are real-time telemetered to my house.
My main interest is using these new technologies for scientific purposes: phytoplankton identification (including
harmful algal blooms) and determining factors contributing to variability in remote sensing reflectance.
As a graduate student, I worked at the UCSB
OPL on the ONR-sponsored
Coastal Mixing and Optics Project (CMO).
The goal of my study was to determine how particle and optical properties respond to physical forcing under
various oceanic conditions. The approach to the research is to collect time-series of physical and optical
data at several depths with moorings placed at a mid-shelf location on a broad continental shelf just south
of Martha's Vineyard near Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The first deployment was from July 8 - September 25, 1996,
and the second deploymentfrom September 25, 1996 - January 3, 1997. The third deployment was from
January 6 through April 6, 1997, and the fourth deployment was from April 16 through June 11, 1997.
The time-series from the first deployment provides a new data set showing the effect of
Hurricane Edouard and
Hurricane Hortense on physical,
optical, and particle properties in the coastal ocean. This study contributed to investigations of the
predictions of tropical storms, and thus, the prevention of extensive storm damage in coastal areas.
I had also been working on the Bermuda Testbed Mooring
project. My work has mostly involved the a single instrument that takes concurrent measurements of attenuation
and absorption characteristics at nine wavelengths (WET Labs, Inc. ac-9) in the water column.
As an undergraduate at the University of Minnesota, I worked as a Junior Research Scientist at the
St. Anthony Falls Laboratory for
Professor Gary Parker, where I gained valuable research experience in particle transport.
I conducted experiments studying downstream fining and other scale-related problems, viscous layers
affecting downstream coarsening, debris flows in turbidity currents, and the
relationship between Reynolds numbers and the formation of alluvial fans.