CAREER: A Research and Education Plan for Advancing Ocean Carbon Research through Laser-Based Sensors
This research will address critical challenges for oceanographic sensing by developing a new instrument to measure dissolved inorganic carbon. This will enhance the study of the ocean carbon dioxide system, which is of global importance for its role in climate changes, ocean acidification, and in biological processes. A "Girls in Ocean Engineering and Science Institute," for 5th and 6th grade girls will be developed. A diverse audience of undergraduate students, middle and high school teachers, and a graduate student will be included in the research. These efforts aim to contribute to diversifying the fields of engineering and ocean science/engineering. The overall scope of this research is to develop a dissolved inorganic carbon sensor capable of measurements on a variety of oceanographic platforms. The research hypothesis is that infrared laser-based spectroscopic techniques traditionally used for atmospheric sensing can be utilized for highly sensitive, easy to deploy, yet low cost sensors to fill a critical need in ocean science. A small, near-infrared laser-based sensor will be designed for the measurement of carbon dioxide. Through the packaging of this sensor, deployments to depths up to 1000 m will be achieved. Bringing advanced analytical techniques from the laboratory into the deep sea will help to close critical gaps for in-situ sensing.