Y'know, I actually thought I had already posted about this, but I'm either blind and can't see it, or just absent minded. Last weekend MBARI
(Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute) held their annual "open house". For those not familiar with MBARI (and really, most folks outside the Monterey area aren't) they perform aquatic research in the Monterey Bay. What makes this spot especially interesting (and why they're located in Moss Landing, CA) is that there is a deep water canyon running through the bay. The canyon plunges to over 6,000 ft in depth, and therefore houses some extremely interesting life forms and such. Interestingly/ironically, the facility is built on the site of an old whaling station, and some of the pilings from the whaling dock are still visible at low tide. Duncan & I have walked that beach many times, and never realized that tidbit of info until the open house.
Anywho, at the open house, they set out not only information boards, but have much of the equipment out for display. Engineers, researchers, scientists and volunteers are available to answer questions, give demonstrations and generally explain what they're trying to accomplish. I actually wish they had job openings that I'd qualify for (I even checked, since one of their booths was the HR department), since it seemed like really fascinating work, they allow employees to bring their dogs to the office (many of them do, and they walk around the beach during their breaks) and more than a few of their engineers/scientists were rather cute females. But oh well.
Some of the equipment they had on display were mock-ups, because they were still in the design/planning stages. But a lot of it was fully functional and they even gave demonstrations of a few (the machine shop was grinding out a few items, and one of the remote controlled deep-water vessels had a robot arm in operation). All in all, it was a really interesting day. Well, half day. I would have liked to get an earlier start, but was delayed by a certain family member who tends to not understand the concept of clocks and/or how things do not revolve around them.
Posted at 7/28/2008 10:18:14 am by PhilM