Monday, September 21, 2009

UVI Students Join ‘Live Chat’ with Ocean Researchers in Sea of Japan

Photo illustration by UVI Public Relations

UVI researcher Dr. Nasseer Idrisi conducted his first “live chat” from the decks of a research ship in the Sea of Japan with a room full of students and other interested persons on the University’s St. Thomas campus on Saturday, Sept. 19. Dr. Idrisi first gave the UVI audience a tour of the ship and its laboratories. He and other scientists then fielded a variety of questions from students gathered in room 101 of the Teacher Education Building.

The students wanted to know about the subject of the research mission, the techniques used to obtain samples from the seabed, and if they had pulled up any precious gems. The project is investigating an extinct super volcano in an area known as the Shatsky Rise. Scientists use techniques similar to those employed in drilling oil wells at sea. And, finally, they have found no gems just yet.

Dr. Idrisi, the expedition’s “educator at sea,” is focusing on serving as the ship’s communicator. As such, he is working directly with UVI Science 100 students. Subsequent live chats are scheduled for noon on Sunday, Sept. 27, Saturday, Oct. 10, and Sunday, Oct. 25. Virgin Islands educators who want to involve their students in real-time deep ocean geological research, as well as members of the public, are encouraged to attend the videoconference session with Dr. Nasseer Idrisi. All will take place in Room 101 of the Teacher Education Building on UVI’s St. Thomas campus.

More on the Shatsky Rise voyage, including background, photos of the ship and the scientists and sailing schedules, is available from the Ocean Leadership web site:

A news release is also available from the UVI web site – – and from this direct link.
School Groups Invited to Organize Videoconference Sessions
School groups and others interested in organizing their own videoconference sessions with Dr. Idrisi will need to obtain special IOCOM software in order to communicate. An informational fact sheet and technical specifications can be obtained by visiting these links Shatsky Rise_Fact_Sheet - Shatsky Rise Technology