Scripps in the News

Search print, web, television, and radio press clips about Scripps Institution of Oceanography research and people.
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Surfer Today
Nov 06, 2014

Benjamin Thompson, founder of BoardFormula, had decided to invest his time and engineering knowledge in the protection of the environment and oceans while riding the waves. SmartPhin is a surfboard fin that measures and record data such as location, time, temperature, salinity, and pH. Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego is already testing the surfboard fin.

Nov 04, 2014

Benjamin Thompson is a surfer, but what’s equally important to know is that he’s also an engineer. And now, Thompson is using this rare combination of skills to build a new product that could radically expand our understanding of the world’s oceans. Smart Phin is a surfboard fin equipped with a special sensor that not only tracks a surfer’s location, but also measures the temperature, salinity, and acidity of the water to give researchers insight on the impact of climate change over time. Since then, Lost Bird Project has been the sole backer of the Smart Phin, and will have distribution rights once the product is complete. But it could take some time to get to a commercial product. In addition to the rigorous testing being done through the XPRIZE Foundation, the sensor is also being vetted by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego.

Marine Technology News
Nov 04, 2014

Margaret Leinen, Director, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego, shares her insights with MTR regarding the internationally regarded institution and its Southern California roots. Scripps has become one of the most important education and research centers for understanding and protecting the planet and its researchers travel to all corners of the earth and oceans. But although Scripps’ research is global, its roots remain local and intricately connected with the San Diego maritime industry and “blue economy.”

New Scientist
Nov 04, 2014

Rising global temperatures will turn much of the snow that currently replenishes the California’s reservoirs to rain, according to modeling studies by Dan Cayan at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. The snowpack isn't the only source of fresh water in California, but Cayan says it would be "more of a challenge" to manage water as rainfall rather than snow. He presented his findings at the Bay-Delta Science Conference in Sacramento last week.

Nov 04, 2014

Humans appear to have done a thorough job of contaminating the Earth’s rivers, oceans and atmosphere, says Rachel Nuwer. Is there anywhere pristine left on the planet? “There’s human debris everywhere,” says Lisa Levin, a biological oceanographer at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. “It brings home the fact that human beings are an integral part of marine ecosystems now.” Graduate student Jenni Brandon from Scripps Institution of Oceanography says that the tiny plastic pieces filling the ocean “are probably impossible to ever clean up and can really be around forever.”

Marin News
Nov 02, 2014

Rare changes in wind patterns this fall have caused the Pacific Ocean off California and the West Coast to warm to historic levels, drawing in a bizarre menagerie of warm-water species. The mysterious phenomena are surprising fishermen and giving marine biologists an aquatic Christmas in November. In August and September there were even sightings of skipjack tuna and giant sunfish, or mola mola, off Alaska. "They are following the water temperature," said H.J. Walker, a senior museum scientist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. "Fish come up against a cold-water barrier normally and turn around. But now they aren't encountering that, so they are swimming farther north."

The Sacramento Bee
Nov 02, 2014

Future droughts in California are likely to bite deeper and last longer than the one now gripping the state, according to new research into the potential effects of climate change. Scientists from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego and the U.S. Geological Survey used computer climate modeling tools to estimate the effects of warmer temperatures in future decades. In particular, they studied the effect on California’s mountain snowpack, the largest source of fresh water in the state, which refills thousands of water-storage reservoirs each spring via snowmelt. “The water contained in the snowpack is declining pretty steadily through the 21st century,” said Dan Cayan, director of the California Climate Change Center at Scripps in San Diego and the study’s lead author. “According to the models, we’re already detecting these changes in snowpack."
Oct 31, 2014

The vibrations from traffic create seismic waves that ripple through the earth below us. The patterns are so specific that scientists can even measure them and observe what’s happening by monitoring the ground. "[We] can follow a metro schedule, count aircraft and their acceleration on a runway and even see larger vehicles on a 10-lane highway," two researchers—Nima Riahi and Peter Gerstoft from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego—reported at the 168th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America. Riahi and Gerstoft used a network of 5,300 geophones spread around Long Beach, Calif. The instruments measure vibrations in the earth, reports Mary Beth Griggs for Popular Science.

The Washington Post
Oct 31, 2014

Ghosts? Monsters? These things don't scare us. What does make us shudder, though, is scary data about our country and world. From global warming and Ebola to inequality, racism and ageism, these 13 charts should frighten you. 2) For the first time in human history, the average amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere topped 400 parts per million for all of April. Scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego reported the average CO2 value was 401.33 parts per million at an observatory in Hawaii. It's been at least three million years since the Earth's atmosphere held this much carbon dioxide.

NSF Science 360
Oct 31, 2014

Racetrack Playa is home to an enduring Death Valley mystery. Littered across the surface of this dry lake, also called a “playa,” are hundreds of rocks–-some weighing as much as 700 pounds-–that seem to have been dragged across the ground, leaving synchronized trails that can stretch for hundreds of meters. What powerful force could be moving them? Researchers have investigated this question since the 1940s, but no one has seen the process in action--until now. Video provided by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego.