Deep-sea Exploration, Marine Conservation Focus of Lawrence University Convocation

APPLETON, WIS. — Internationally recognized biologist and deep-sea explorer Edith Widder discusses her efforts to reverse the degradation of the world’s marine environments Tuesday, Feb. 3 in a Lawrence University convocation.

Widder presents “Eye in the Sea: What Does Deep Sea Exploration Tell Us About Marine Conservation?” at 11:10 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel, 510 E. College Ave., Appleton. Widder also will conduct a question and answer session at 1:30 p.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Union. Both events are free and open to the public.

A specialist in bioluminescence — the light chemically produced by many ocean organisms — Widder has been at the forefront of creating new instrumentation and equipment for deep-sea observation. Among Widder’s inventions is the Eye in the Sea (EITS), a remotely operated camera system that automatically detects and measures the bioluminescence given off by nearby organisms on the ocean floor.

Widder has completed more than 250 dives in deep-diving submersibles and her research involving submersibles has been the focus of BBC, PBS, Discovery Channel and National Geographic television productions.

In 2005, Widder co-founded the Ocean Research and Conservation Association (ORCA) in Fort Pierce, Fla., serving as president and senior scientist. The non-profit organization develops innovative technologies and science-based conservation programs for the protection of marine ecosystems. Her expertise in oceanographic research and technological innovation was recognized in 2006 with a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship.