NOAA Dives into Ocean in Google Earth

February 2, 2009

Google Earth Ocean image.

High resolution (Credit: NOAA)

Visitors to a new element of a popular online Earth exploration tool will discover an abundance of NOAA information and images during their journey. Google Earth today unveiled Ocean in Google Earth, a new way for online explorers to dive into the ocean’s depths. The launch of Ocean in Google Earth took place in San Francisco.

“This allows anyone, anywhere at any time to explore virtually the ocean from their home computer,” said Richard Spinrad, NOAA assistant administrator for oceanic and atmospheric research. “And during their journey, they will benefit from abundant contributions of information and imagery supplied by NOAA.”

Spinrad serves on the Ocean in Google Earth advisory board.

NOAA contributed and will continue to contribute a variety of data and imagery to the project. Some of the expeditions from the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, such as a trip to the submerged wreck of the Titanic, and information and ocean current maps demonstrating marine debris movement from the NOAA Marine Debris Program are included. NOAA also provides data from NOAA’s National Data Buoy Center and seabed maps of U.S. coastal waters.

Other NOAA contributions include information on marine protected areas including the 13 U.S. national marine sanctuaries and one marine national monument that are highlighted in detail via underwater video footage, high resolution seabed maps, and photography.

“Presenting NOAA information in this way is not only exciting, but also gives the public a better understanding of NOAA’s ocean mission,” Spinrad said. “We’re also very excited that more young users may become interested in marine science careers while adults can learn more about the myriad issues affecting our ocean. Of course, everyone can enjoy the magnificent beauty of life below the water’s surface.”

NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth’s environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources.