This proposal is awarded support for the first of five years of operation under a renewal of the current NSF Cooperative Agreement, OCE-0500180. Ship awards will be renegotiated each year and is based on the number of days of ship time in support of NSF funded research program. R/V Kilo Moana, a Navy-owned research vessel, is operated as part of the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System (UNOLS) research fleet by University of Hawaii under Charter Party N00014-08-L-0651 with Office of Naval Research and a Cooperative Agreement with NSF. In 2012, Kilo Moana anticipates operating 238 days, of which 201 days will be in direct support of NSF peer-reviewed sea-going programs.
Intellectual and Technical Merit Use of R/V Kilo Moana allows researchers to make cost-effective studies of a wide array of topics in ocean research, including physical, chemical, biological and geological oceanography and ocean engineering. A major emphasis is the study of ocean currents, nutrients, CO2 and biota that together control the physical, biological and chemical processes in the surface ocean, the flux of CO2 between the ocean and the atmosphere, and the ecology of marine life. In 2012, the first year of the proposed new cooperative agreement, these studies will occur during focused investigations around Hawaii (Karl, Church, Sachs, Alford, Sweeney).
Broader Impacts Studies of ocean processes undertaken for NSF-funded researchers on R/V Kilo Moana include projects that are part of large international efforts to understand the global carbon cycle, coupled ocean-atmosphere climate forcing, and ocean ecosystem dynamics and productivity all of which are environmental and public policy issues with direct societal impacts. In addition, this year R/V Kilo Moana will support 2 cruises (Richards) to the western equatorial Pacific to examine mixing in the equatorial thermocline, a process that plays an important role in ocean atmosphere interactions including heat transfer, ultimately a key factor in climate processes. R/V Kilo Moana is at the cutting edge of research vessel technology, and we seek to maximize her exposure to the public as part of the Universitys commitment to outreach and education. We provide high school teachers/students as well as graduate and undergraduate students the opportunity to participate in our State-and federally-funded cruises, including dedicated student/teaching cruises. We give a high priority to requests for tours of our ships and supporting facilities. In general, we have an open door policy for individuals and groups that are interested in our research ships, facilities, and research operations