Engineering & Our Oceans: Unique Opportunity Lets Public Experience Ocean Engineering Up Close


A special Behind-the-Scenes at Scripps event “Engineering and Our Oceans,” was held in conjunction with the San Diego Festival of Science and Engineering in late March to give middle school and high school students a glimpse of ocean science in action. Hosted by E.W. Scripps Associates, guests were treated to tours of two laboratories on campus and had the unique opportunity to interact with robots and the creators of kid-friendly comics. Labs and scientists featured included:

  • The Scripps Hydraulics Laboratory, with an array of testing facilities including a wind-wave channel, two flow channels, three pressure testing vessels, and a deep tank. The Hydraulics Lab was recently the base of a groundbreaking study of natural particles in the atmosphere.
  • The Coastal Data Information Program (CDIP), which specializes in wave measurement, swell modeling and forecasting, and the analysis of coastal environment data. CDIP data is used daily by a vast mix of users, from harbor masters to surfers. See CDIP video: The Beach of the Future.
  • The creators of Squidtoons, a marine science-focused comics website bustling with quirky, educational, kid-friendly comics. Led by Scripps graduate student Garfield Kwan, the Squidtoons team strives to promote the site’s mission of “illustrating science with farts, burps, and giggles.”
  • Professor Thomas Bewley, director of the UCSD Flow Control & Coordinated Robotics Labs at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, who gave a short talk titled “Coordinated Squads of Robotic Systems for Large-Scale Environmental Sensing.” Dr. Bewley had several prototype, consumer, and educational robotic systems on display for children of all ages to interact with.


E.W. Scripps Associates (EWSA) is a premier group of annual donors who make a difference in the global research conducted by Scripps Institution of Oceanography scientists. Members learn about ocean, earth, and climate science first-hand from Scripps scientists at “behind-the-scenes” events and are given special access to Birch Aquarium at Scripps.


The seventh annual San Diego Festival of Science and Engineering, a program of the BIOCOM Institute and presented by Illumina, featured a week of interactive demonstrations, hands-on activities, and dynamic speakers to engage kids and families in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) at various locations throughout San Diego County. The event encouraged kids to get excited about science and related fields to inspire them to become tomorrow’s STEM innovators.

Sign Up For
Explorations Now

explorations now is the free award-winning digital science magazine from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Join subscribers from around the world and keep up on our cutting-edge research.