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Science, Technology, & Exploration

David J. Ruck/NOAA

The National Marine Sanctuary System includes 14 nationally significant sites that protect over 620,000 miles in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and the Great Lakes. While each sanctuary is unique, together they form a network of living laboratories where focused research and exploration can help us better understand changes occurring in our ocean and Great Lakes and find solutions to conservation for future generations. The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation supports research in and exploration of our nation’s most treasured underwater sites.   



Our ocean and Great Lakes are ever-changing. A changing climate, a growing population, and increased demand by the global economy all affect our precious natural resources. With science, we can make informed decisions to conserve natural, historic, and cultural resources. We support short- and long-term research across the National Marine Sanctuary System to monitor change, produce new knowledge, and inform decisions in and out of sanctuaries.



From the invention of the compass to the advent of SCUBA diving and use of unmanned submersibles, embracing new technology is essential to aquatic research and exploration. The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation builds partnerships across industries to use new technologies to advance marine conservation and better understand our national marine sanctuaries.



While the boundaries of our national marine sanctuaries are clearly defined, there is much to discover of what lies beneath the surface. From underwater expeditions to mapping the seafloor to connecting the public to the excitement of new discoveries, the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation supports exploration in and around sanctuaries.