Coastal Studies Institute’s dive team recently partnered with a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Centers for Coastal Ocean Sciences (NCCOS) underwater habitat study off the coast of North Carolina in Onslow and Raleigh Bays. The study was conducted aboard the NOAA Ship Nancy Foster, a 187 ft. oceanographic research vessel dedicated to improving the understanding of the marine environment. The studies conducted on this research cruise included echosounder surveys of the ocean floor from the ship, and fish counts and structure-from-motion modeling conducted by dive teams.
The new structure-from-motion technique tested allows for the construction of three-dimensional models of the rocky reef, shipwreck or artificial reef, through the use of thousands of photos from GoPro cameras linked together in multi-camera arrays. The collection of this data will help scientists link characteristics of specific habitats with the fish species that are found there.