Sea Discovery

BP Becomes Exclusive Oil & Gas Industry Supporter for Liquid Robotics’ PacX Challenge

Image: LiquidRobotics Liquid Robotics®, an ocean data services provider and developer of the Wave Glider®, the first wave-powered marine robot, announces that BP has agreed to be the exclusive oil and gas industry supporter of the PacX Challenge. Designed to gain greater knowledge and understanding of our oceans, the PacX Challenge is a yearlong, scientific journey of four Liquid Robotics' Wave Gliders across the Pacific Ocean. While on their treacherous expedition over remote parts of the Pacific Ocean, these marine robots are collecting, transmitting and making available an unprecedented array of scientific data from ocean winds, wave heights, weather, oxygen, and currents to barometric pressure.
As part of the PacX Challenge, Liquid Robotics and BP have established a two-part grand prize that will be awarded to the person(s) whose research “best represents the spirit of exploration and discovery embodied by this journey”. The grand prize consists of a $50,000 BP PacX Research Grant and six months of free Wave Glider data services from Liquid Robotics. The supporting $50,000 grant offered by BP will be given to the winner to subsidize managing the six-month Wave Glider mission and analyzing the collected data. Together, this prize provides scientists, educators and students around the world an unparalleled opportunity to advance ocean science and exploration.

“When we learned about the scientific goals of the PacX Challenge, we were eager to add BP's corporate support to this exciting exploration and ocean discovery,” said Hunter Rowe, deputy technology manager, BP Crisis and Continuity Manager. “Projects like these underscore BP's long-held commitment to supporting technology that adds to our understanding of complex offshore environments and holds the potential to expand our expertise as one of the world's top oil and gas producers.”

The PacX Challenge is opening up the Pacific ocean to people who never dreamt of getting access to this quality and quantity of real time ocean data,” said Bill Vass, CEO of Liquid Robotics. “I am convinced this expedition will inspire new scientific discoveries while demonstrating the ease and economics of ocean data services. With the addition of BP as our exclusive oil & gas supporter and through their generous BP PacX Research Grant, the PacX Challenge competition will stimulate scientific breakthroughs that will affect our lives for decades to come.” Those who are interested in competing for the prize are required to submit a one-page research abstract outlining their scientific intentions for the data collected during the PacX Challenge. Deadline for submissions is July 17, 2012. A board of distinguished U.S. and international ocean scientists will evaluate the submissions and select the top 5 finalists for presentation of their research proposals. From the presentations, a grand prizewinner will be awarded.

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