Shared Facilities

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VC Area / SIO Section Department Facility Description Instruments
OA CASPO Instrument Development Group (IDG)

This is a successful and well-utilized recharge facility. Its main source of support is through glider and float (Argo) programs, but it does instrument development for individual PIs as its schedule/workload allows. Design, construction and operation of a range of oceanographic instruments including ones based on autonomous profiling floats and underwater gliders


Director: Russ Davis/Dean Roemmich/Dan Rudnick
Contact: Jeffrey Sherman
OA CASPO COMPAS Shared Computer Facility

Primary Cluster for the SIO COMPASS Shared Computer Facility. Limited access.


access to small collegial group-housed in the COMPAS computing facility

Director: Bruce Cornuelle
Contact: Bruce Cornuelle
Computer cluster
OA CASPO Electromagnetic Research Facility (EMRF)

The EMRF is not so much a laboratory but a research setup located outdoors so as to avoid the electric and magnetic interference and vibrational disturbances commonly produced by standard laboratories. Designed and built to simulate the ambient electric and earth's magnetic fields present anywhere in the world's oceans in a large, land-based seawater tank. Facility offers a unique precision research tool no other Oceanographic Institution or Naval Research Laboratory in the world has available. It excels in featuring large ambient magnetic and electric fields, yet of great precision. The fields in the central cylindrical seawater observation tank can be smoothly varied in direction and strength, up to ten times natural. Moreover, the fields in the observation tank can also be nulled completely.


Director: Ad Kalmijn
Contact: Peter Baker
Test tank (Seawater land-based), Power supply/amplifiers, Coil system
OA MPL MPL R&D Machine Shop

The Marine Physical Laboratory (MPL) Research and Development (R&D) Shop was established in 1946 to support seagoing scientific groups with the design and fabrication of specialized oceanographic research equipment. After almost 70 years, the MPL R&D Shop has significant experience in the design and fabrication of scientific devices in support of oceanographic projects including precision optical equipment, sonar housings, deep sea pressure cases, winches, heave compensators, research equipment deployment, boom fabrication and a variety of marine equipment support devices. TheShop also performs repairs on winches, cranes, hydraulic controls and a variety of special valves used in marine applications, as well as experience in construction, outfitting, deployment and maintaining sea buoys from 10 meters to 3 meters in diameter. In addition to all the fabrication and maintenance capabilities, the MPL shop handles all mooring operations for R/P FLIP during it's numerous research expeditions. TheShop, consisting of 18,000 square feet of both inside and outside space, has a wide variety of equipment from small precision machines to large shipyard type machinery, as well as an environmental test chamber, and special facilities for conducting equipment pressure tests, circuit board fabrication, and plastic potting. We also have 3D CAD/CAM programming capabilities for mills and lathes utilizing Mastercam 5X.


Director: William Kuperman
Contact: Frank Biegler
Winches, Heave compensators, Pressure testing, Circuit board fabrication, Plastic potting, Milling machines, Lathes, Environmental test chamber, 3D CAD/CAM (programming for mills and lathes utilizing Mastercam 5X)
OA MPL CO2 in Seawater Measurement Facility

Access is provided to equipment in Dickson lab for the measurement of pH, total dissolved inorganic carbon and total alkalinity, and charges are levied (a) for training and (b) per sample run. The facility can also provide suitable sampling bottles, etc. for the collection of samples for CO2 in seawater properties, and will run such samples on behalf of others - at a cost.


1. The training on, and use of, instruments through recharge is only available to UCSD personnel;
2. Recharge for samples analyzed is available using UCSD Index numbers;
3. For non-UCSD analyses, the running of samples requires that an appropriate Service Contract be established.

Director: Andrew Dickson
Contact: Andrew Dickson
Spectrophotometric system for measurement of seawater pH, Acidimetric titration system for measurement of seawater alkalinity, Extraction / couometry system for measurement of total dissolved inorganic carbon in seawater
OA MPL Modular Aerial Sensing System (MASS)

The MASS is a shared facility that is flown on leased aircraft. Data is collected from the various instruments in the system and provided to the "customer". To date work has been completed for Falk Feddersen and Sarah Giddings in several experiments, plus a researcher at UCSB.


Contact for cost arrangements.

Director: K. Melville
Contact: Luc Lenain
MASS (Modular Aerial Sensing System)
SIO MSDS Hydraulics Lab

The function of the Hydraulics Laboratory is to provide expertise, space, facilities, and equipment for physical and biological oceanographic research. The Hydraulics Laboratory offers many testing facilities including a wind-wave channel, three pressure testing vessels, a deep tank, and a temperature/pressure calibration facility. An on-site machine shop, welding equipment, fabrication tools, and the in house expertise to use them greatly enhance the capability of the laboratory to serve a wide variety of scientific projects and research. The Hydraulics Laboratory also maintains a small pool of field instruments that can be made available to researchers. Equipment: Wind Wave Channel, Glass Walled Wave Channel, Deep Tank (10m deep), Stratified Flow Channel, Pressure Test Chambers, Environmental Test Chamber (Volume: 1 m^3; Temperature range: -70 to 170 oC; Humidity control: 20 to 95% RH; Ambient pressure), Rotating Table Facility, Ocean Atmosphere Research Pressure Facility, Ocean Atmosphere Research Pool, field instruments, machining, welding, and fabrication resources.


Director: Grant Deane
Contact: Ken Duff
Wind-wave channel, Flow channels, Test tank (deep), Environmental test chamber
SIO MSDS Marine Sciences Development Center

The Marine Science Development Center (MSDC) specializes in the design, development, fabrication, and assembly of oceanographic, space, and general scientific hardware from minute laser components to large-scale integrated systems. MSDC serves SIO, UCSD, various other institutions, and the private sector. Truly a one stop shop, we offer our clients a wide range of services that include, but are not limited to, the following: Additive Manufacturing, Engineering, Machining, Fabrication in house and in the field, X-ray certified welding, Inspection, Assembly, Surface coating, High vacuum expertise and Field support, deep tank, wind wave channel, glass channel, 3 pressure testing chambers, temperature/pressure testing facility, 3D printer, high precision measuring instruments plus an array of welding, CNC, lathe and other machining equipment of various sizes. Call (858) 534-2940 with any inquiries.


Director: Bruce Appelgate
Contact: Ken Duff
Welder, Wind-wave channel, Temperature/pressure chamber, 3D Printer, Glass channel
SIO MSDS Marine Biology Boating Operations

Scripps Oceanography maintains a fleet of small boats that are deployable from Scripps Pier and other local areas. The small boating program provides instruction, equipment, and operational support to faculty and students for research and instruction around our La Jolla location as well as at research sites worldwide.


Director: Christian Mcdonald
Contact: Phil Zerofski
Boats (small)
SIO MSDS MakerSpace

The SIO MakerSpace (coming soon) located in the Hydraulics Laboratory will provide the SIO community with a shared space with traditional tooling, digital design software, rapid prototyping tools, and test facilities with an emphasis on the marine and earth sciences. It will serve as an educational space that promotes hands-on creativity and innovation, a collaborative space that fosters communication between diverse groups of people and research disciplines, and a design space for developing the next generation of scientists and engineers.
This facility will leverage decades of SIO expertise in earth science and capitalize on the existing unique recharge capabilities already present in the H-Lab (both equipment like wave channels and pressure test vessels, and the technical experience). The MakerSpace will have multiple goals:
1) Support SIO graduate and undergraduate teaching, mentoring, and self-guided discovery of new technology in a hands-on environment.
2) Provide advanced resources for shared use by SIO faculty and staff.
3) As part of the UCSD Collaboration of Likeminded Learners And Builders (COLLAB) infrastructure, it will foster educational ties between students and faculty at SIO and the UCSD campus.
Ultimately, the SIO MakerSpace will foster the training of the next generation of earth scientists and engineers across UCSD by supporting individual research, exploratory learning and capstone student projects.


Director: Grant Deane, Dale Stokes
Contact: Doug Alden
sharknado