A 2001 Tabor Academy graduate will return to campus Feb. 20 to talk about the testing of the Saildrone, an innovative research tool in the Arctic to advance ocean observation.
Heather McRae Tabisola's 6:30 p.m. presentation is part of the school's Science@Work Lecture Series. Guests will learn more about the innovative technology of unmanned surface vehicles and how they are advancing ocean observations.
The lecture is free and open to the public at Tabor, 232 Front St., Marion, in the Stroud Academic Center's Lyndon South Auditorium.
Tabisola is a research coordinator with the University of Washington’s Joint Institute for the Study of Atmosphere and Oceans, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Cooperative Institute, in Seattle. She works at the interface between the research and engineering communities to connect people and develop new tools to explore and monitor the oceans in extreme conditions. Her current projects focus on mobile autonomous vehicles for Arctic research and long-term fisheries oceanography studies in Alaska. She has traveled the world for work. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of New Hampshire.
Tabisola will share information about the autonomous platforms her group at NOAA is using, created by Saildrone Inc. Saildrone's unmanned surface vehicles are outfitted with more than 40 meteorological and oceanographic research sensors. The drones, 23-foot-long sailboats, meander the seas between the United States and Russia to track ice melt, measure the ocean's levels of carbon dioxide, and count fish, seal, and whale populations without a single human being on board. The wind- and solar-powered research vehicles are able to travel thousands of miles across the ocean, reaching some areas never before surveyed with such specialized technology.