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Mace & Crown | July 26, 2017

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Steve Haddock: Aliens of the Deep

Steve Haddock: Aliens of the Deep

By Jacob Hall

Contributing Writer

A great fact about the Hampton Roads area is the close proximity to aliens. At least that’s what scientist Steve Haddock from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute believes.

Haddock, who gave a lecture on April 16, is currently on a tour that talks about aliens on Earth, the ones found in the deep sea. Haddock and the institute observe and study the creatures found deep down in unexplored parts of the ocean.

The lecture took place in the North Cafeteria of the Webb Center. Haddock began by explaining the specifics of his job. By using advanced tools, they are able to observe these deep-sea creatures and learn more about them.

Of course, there are much more apparent applications of this for Old Dominion students.

“The lecture sparks interest in an area to possibly study more,” Ariane Walter, a junior biology major, said.

The lecture has helped Walter to open her eyes to the many fields of study available in this major. Events like this help students realize the potential possibilities when they graduate.

Out of these deep-sea creatures, a concentration is put on the jellyfish. This focus comes from the bioluminescent molecules inside them. In simpler words, it’s the stuff that makes them glow. This ability seems to come right out of the pages of science fiction, but researchers are starting to understand how it works.

“Why go there when we can go to the moon?” Haddock asked.

As it turns out, the answer is pretty simple. These jellyfish in the deep sea are just as alien to us as anything in space, except they’re on our own planet. In addition to discovery, there are actually practical uses that are being found by the research.

This research has helped to advance many fields, ranging from everyday tools to tools used in surgery. It’s even a possible field for ODU students to go into. This research has many uses, and is located right in our oceans.