Project Poseidon: A Proposed 100 Day Undersea Expedition

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The SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society, a pending 501(c)(3) non-profit exploration and research organization, announces Project Poseidon, a proposed 100-day undersea exploration and research expedition at Aquarius Reef Base, the world’s only undersea laboratory dedicated to science and education, owned and operated by Florida International University. If successful, Project Poseidon will surpass the world record for the longest mission conducted from an undersea habitat.

The SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society, a pending 501(c)(3) non-profit exploration and research organization, announces Project Poseidon, a proposed 100-day undersea exploration and research expedition at Aquarius Reef Base, the world’s only undersea laboratory dedicated to science and education, owned and operated by Florida International University. If successful, Project Poseidon will surpass the world record for the longest mission conducted from an undersea habitat.

The two overarching objectives of the Project Poseidon expedition are to conduct cross-disciplinary research encompassing multiple, yet complementary fields of study, and to effectively communicate and disseminate the mission’s scientific findings through a comprehensive education and public outreach program. Expedition research activities will span the fields of ocean science, human health and performance, engineering, telemedicine, geospatial imaging, and space analog research. The proposed research will be conducted in collaboration with academic, government, and commercial and private industry partners and collaborators.

Since the dawn of space exploration, scientists have used space analog environments and simulations as a way to conduct meaningful and relevant environment research that is used for learning to live in the extreme environment of space. Underwater habitats, including the Aquarius Reef Base, are used by agencies such as the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) as a high-fidelity space analog environment, providing scientists with a robust platform for conducting research that is invaluable to human space flight programs. The Project Poseidon mission will add to that body of knowledge through the conduct of research in the areas of human health, performance, and physiology in a confined space, extreme space analog environment. Other notable research projects for the mission include: seafloor extravehicular activity functional task assessment, evaluation of candidate physiological monitoring system technologies, changes in crew health and performance during a 100-day undersea space analog mission, Google Earth as an aide for identifying key seafloor topography during seafloor extravehicular activity, viability of an integrated exercise countermeasures and human health program in the confined space of an undersea habitat, and the use of remotely operated vehicle technology for seafloor extravehicular activity reconnaissance and planning.

According to Jamie Guined, Project Poseidon’s aquanaut crew commander, “The vision behind Project Poseidon is to facilitate a greater understanding of the link and synergy that exists between sea and space, and to use the mission as a catalyst to strengthen that connection. To educate not only the public, but also the policy makers, that there is a need for the human exploration of the sea just as there is for space.”

To incite public interest and involvement in the mission, Project Poseidon includes two novel outreach programs designed to provide opportunities for professionals, students, and educators to join the Project Poseidon crew as either a visiting “Scientist in the Sea” or “Mission Ambassador.” Candidates for these two programs will be identified through a comprehensive application and selection process administered by the SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society and its mission partners. Those interested in joining the Project Poseidon team have until October 23, 2015 to submit their application, found on the Society’s website, for a limited number of available positions ranging from mission support to aquanaut team.

Project Poseidon will host its first press conference and public meet & greet at the Man in the Sea Museum in Panama City Beach, FL on Tuesday, October 6, 2015 beginning at 1:00 pm ET. The Project Poseidon team will pay a special tribute to the U.S. Navy’s SEALAB II program during the press conference, to commemorate the program’s 50th anniversary, with the unveiling of a limited-run SEALAB commemorative patch designed by artist Mr. Tim Gagnon. The net proceeds from the sale of this commemorative patch will help support the Project Poseidon mission, as well as the SEALAB I habitat restoration project spearheaded by the Man in the Sea Museum. A second media event and public meet & greet will be hosted by the Sea, Earth, and Space Summit at the South Shore Harbour Resort & Conference Center in League City, TX on Thursday, October 29, 2015 beginning at 1:00 pm CT.

About the SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society: The SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society Inc. is a pending 501(c)3 education and research organization devoted to the ongoing exploration and scientific investigation of the ocean and its use as a space analog environment. For more information on Project Poseidon and the SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society, please visit http://www.seaspacesociety.org. For media inquiries, email contact@seaspacesociety.org.

About FIU Aquarius Reef Base:
Florida International University’s Medina Aquarius Program is dedicated to the study and preservation of marine ecosystems worldwide. As part of the Marine Education and Research Initiative, the program is enhancing the scope and impact of FIU on research, educational outreach, technology development, and professional training. At the heart of the program is the one-of-a-kind Aquarius Reef Base, the world’s only operational undersea research laboratory. Deployed 60 feet beneath the surface in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, Aquarius is a globally significant asset that provides unparalleled means to study the ocean, test and develop state-of-the-art undersea technology, train specialized divers and astronauts, and engage the world's imagination. Florida International University is recognized as a Carnegie engaged university, finding solutions to the most challenging problems of our time. FIU has awarded more than 200,000 degrees and enrolls more than 54,000 students in two campuses and three centers including FIU Downtown on Brickell, FIU@I-75, and the Miami Beach Urban Studios.

About Man in the Sea Museum:
Owned by the Institute of Diving, the Man in the Sea Museum showcases the progress of underwater technology, from the earliest days of diving to the most modern underwater habitats.
The Institute of Diving is a non-profit, educational organization formed in 1977.

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Jamie Guined
SeaSpace Exploration & Research Society
since: 06/2015
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