The Monterey Bay Aquarium and Research Institute has been awarded $5 million by the National Science Foundation to support “Ocean Vision AI,” a powerful new way to process underwater images that is powered by artificial intelligence.
“Ocean Vision AI” brings together the knowledge of MBARI, the University of California Santa Cruz, Climate Change AI, CVision AI, the Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System (CeNCOOS) and the Ocean Discovery League to better process underwater visual data to improve our stewardship of the oceans.
Commenting on the new funding, Kakani Katija, principal engineer at MBARI and the lead principal investigator for “Ocean Vision AI,” stated:
“MBARI and our collaborators are excited to leverage the power of artificial intelligence, community science, and gaming to accelerate the analysis of ocean data. Together, we’re developing tools that are urgently needed to help us better understand and protect our blue planet. Ocean Vision AI will facilitate a dynamic ebb and flow of information. Not only are people learning about the ocean, but they’re also contributing directly to our understanding of the ocean and helping us improve ocean AI.”
Henry Ruhl, director of CeNCOOS Director and a co-principal investigator for Ocean Vision AI, added:
“Ocean Vision AI will unleash a raft of information that will benefit scientists and resource managers. Part of our challenge is to work with users of resulting information so that it’s most useful to them and it comes in ways that users understand what they’re getting.”
While Katy Croff Bell, the founder and president of the Ocean Discovery League and a co-principal investigator for Ocean Vision AI, stated:
“Only a fraction of the hundreds of thousands of hours of ocean video and imagery captured has been viewed and analyzed in its entirety and even less shared with the global scientific community. In a single dive, thousands of species could have been recorded in new locations, at new depths, and new environmental conditions. A wealth of untapped biodiversity information is trapped in these existing recordings, with new data acquired daily.”
You can find out more about MBARI here or check out a video about Ocean AI below.