Technologically advanced oceanographic collaborations onboard Schmidt Ocean Institute's R/V Falkor

Technologically advanced oceanographic collaborations onboard Schmidt Ocean Institute's R/V Falkor

Victor Zykov, Ph.D. and Director of Research of the Schmidt Ocean Institute, will be give a talk at FEUP - DEEC on June 8 at 11.00h - 12.15h. Room i-105


Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI, is a private non-profit operating foundation established by Dr. Eric Schmidt and Wendy Schmidt in 2009 to advance the understanding of the world's ocean through technological advancement, intelligent, data driven observation and analysis, and open sharing of information.  Since 2012, Schmidt Ocean Institute has been supporting ocean research and technology development onboard its globally capable research vessel Falkor.  Over the past 3 years, R/V Falkor sailed in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans.  Based on our latest planning efforts, we anticipate to continue seagoing research in and around the Western Pacific through 2017-2018.

As part of Schmidt Ocean Institute's long term program development, we aim to identify ocean research and technology development opportunities that demonstrate strong alignment with SOI's strategic interests in the following focus areas: 

- Advancing productivity and efficiency of ocean research with new technologies

- Supporting infrastructure, platform, and technology development for marine sciences

- Societally relevant and environmentally focused ocean research aboard R/V Falkor

- Openly sharing the resulting information, data, and research outcomes with the public

Over the past 2 years, SOI initiated several major research infrastructure development programs, such as the development of a series of Hybrid Remotely Operated Vehicles, including one full ocean depth vehicle, new 6000m scientific Autonomous Underwater Vehicle, shipboard High Performance Supercomputing capability, and some others, as well as providing support for new oceanographic technology R&D onboard R/V Falkor. These initiatives are pursued in addition to our continued support of technologically advanced science at sea aboard R/V Falkor, where our collaborating scientist are provided with access to a variety of state-of-the-art oceanographic research systems.

This presentation aims to help the international oceanographic research and technology development community learn about the interests and capabilities of Schmidt Ocean Institute among.  We would also like to inform interested scientists and technology developers about our program planning and proposal selection processes and explain how they can participate in future collaborations with Schmidt Ocean Institute.

Speaker bio:

Dr. Victor Zykov leads the development of Schmidt Ocean Institute's research programs and strategic initiatives. As Director of Research, he established and currently oversees the merit-based proposal review and selection process at SOI, and facilitates the resulting scientific collaborations through their completion and delivery of scientific outcomes, data, and information products to the public.  Victor works closely with the SOI Marine Operations on the implementation of the planned research programs, as well as introduction of new technologically advanced research facilities for SOI, such as the new series of hybrid remotely operating vehicles, including full ocean depth robotic systems, AUVs, live HD video and data streaming from R/V Falkor, high performance shipboard cloud computing, etc.

Previously, Dr. Zykov coordinated the development of science mission requirements and refit specifications for the current SOI research vessel Falkor and previous SOI ship Lone Ranger.  His professional and research interests include robotic exploration of natural unstructured environments, sensor and communication technologies, renewable energy, modular self-reconfigurable robotics, evolutionary system optimization, under-informed structural system identification, robotic self-repair, self-reconfiguration, self-reproduction, and controls engineering.  His research was published in Nature and Science.  His self-reproducing robots Molecubes were on display at the New York Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Victor received his Master's of Science and Doctor's of Philosophy degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Robotics from Cornell University.