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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 17, 2006

CONTACT:
Kate Thompson
(301) 713-3125 ext. 245

NOAA BRINGS SHIPWRECKS, MARINE LIFE CLOSER TO HOME THROUGH NEW MARINE SCIENCE WEB PORTAL
July 17 launch of oceanslive.org will include live video broadcast from USS Monitor shipwreck

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Immersion Presents today launched oceanslive.org, a marine science portal that offers live video and special content to educate people of all ages about the ocean, including national marine sanctuaries. Immersion Presents is an after-school science education program founded by ocean explorer Robert Ballard.

"NOAA is excited to offer this dynamic Internet-based resource, which will allow the students, educators and the public to share in the thrill of discovery while learning more about the natural and cultural treasures of our national marine sanctuaries and the underwater world," said NOAA National Marine Sanctuary program director Daniel J. Basta. "Through oceanslive.org everyone can be a marine explorer."

In addition to watching live video from research expeditions, the portal's visitors can learn more about oceanography, marine life, conservation and preservation, marine research technologies, and the nation's maritime heritage. To complement the video broadcasts, the portal offers lesson plans, videos, puzzles and games based on the marine environment.

The portal's first live "telepresence" broadcast will focus on a research expedition to the wreck of the Civil War ironclad the USS Monitor, located off the North Carolina coast. The expedition is a collaborative effort between the Institute for Exploration and the Monitor National Marine Sanctuary to generate a digital photographic mosaic of the ship's hull and surrounding wreckage. Live programming will be fed via Internet 2 to sites across the country, and also will be converted for broadcast through the oceanslive.org portal.

The NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Program seeks to increase the public awareness of America's marine resources and maritime heritage by conducting scientific research, monitoring, exploration and educational programs. Today, the sanctuary program manages 13 national marine sanctuaries and one marine national monument that together encompass more than 150,000 square miles of America's ocean and Great Lakes natural and cultural resources.

In 2007 NOAA, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, celebrates 200 years of science and service to the nation. Starting with the establishment of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1807 by Thomas Jefferson much of America's scientific heritage is rooted in NOAA. The agency is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners and more than 60 countries to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes.

On the Internet:
NOAA - http://www.noaa.gov
National Ocean Service - http://oceanservice.noaa.gov
National Marine Sanctuary Program - http://sanctuaries.noaa.gov
Monitor National Marine Sanctuary - http://monitor.noaa.gov
Marine Science Portal - http://oceanslive.org


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