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The History of Diving within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

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As the nation’s premiere ocean science agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has a variety of programs that require research below the ocean’s surface. This research is conducted using a variety of diving methodologies, including wet diving, seafloor habitats, remotely operated vehicles, and manned submersibles. For almost fifty years NOAA and its predecessors, the Bureau of Commercial Fisheries and the Coast and Geodetic Survey, have been actively involved in undersea research. Many of the lessons learned and technologies developed during this time have been adopted by the recreational, scientific, and military diving communities, thus benefiting divers everywhere. This paper traces the history of NOAA’s two major diving programs; the NOAA Diving Program and the National Undersea Research Program, and highlights some of the significant accomplishments of each program.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: NOAA Diving Program, Seattle, WA

Publication date: January 1, 2000

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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