For Immediate Release: September 14, 2006
Contact Person: Valerie Pegg, Director
Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts
Michigan Technological University
Exploring the Ends of the Earth at the Rozsa
Dr. David G. Gallo, director of special projects at Woods Hole
Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Massachusetts, was one of
the first oceanographers to use a combination of manned submersibles
and robots to map the undersea world with unprecedented clarity
and detail. Gallo visits Michigan Tech on Monday, September
25 to talk about the last two decades of deep ocean exploration
and to introduce WHOI's most exciting and perhaps most difficult
challenge-exploration of the deepest parts of the sea. His lecture
at the Rozsa is titled Extreme Deep: Exploring the Ends of the
Earth-Neptune's Basement and is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. The
lecture is free and is open to all.
On Tuesday, September 26 Gallo will deliver a second free lecture
at noon in Fisher 135. In Global Water Crisis Gallo will focus
on what he considers to be "looming global water wars."
"We live on the 'blue' planet," he says. "With
more than 70% of the Earth's surface covered by water, more
than 1 billion people still lack safe, clean drinking water
and another two billion lack adequate treatment for wastewater.
Clues from the ocean indicate that we are on the verge of a
significant change in climate. Warmer temperatures are causing
increased melting of ice at the poles, altering the movement
of warm ocean currents." Gallo asks how changing climate
and diminishing freshwater supplies will alter human survival,
global tensions, and the natural landscape.
In addition, Gallo will present at three area high schools.
He will visit Calumet and Lake Linden-Hubbell high schools on
Sept. 25, and Houghton High School on Sept. 27. Other high schools
are welcome to attend Gallo's lecture at Houghton HS.
He will also join area middle and high school science and social
studies teachers for dinner, presentation and discussion on
Gallo, who is well known as an exciting and dynamic speaker,
is passionate about exploration and discovery and is dedicated
to communicating the importance of science and engineering to
the public-at-large. He will describe the initial designs that
are underway at WHOI for the most sophisticated robot to date.
This amazing new submersible will, for the first time ever,
allow exploration of the ocean's great trenches and fracture
zones. Until now, all ocean exploration has been done at depths
less than 20,000 feet (3.75 miles). In fact, much of the research
on hydrothermal vents is done at depths shallower than 2.5 miles.
"The new era of exploration will take us more than twice
as deep," Gallo says. "We have NO idea what we will
find in this deepest and darkest and most hostile of worlds,
but given what we have seen in shallower waters-our anticipation
is incredibly great."
Why is this area of the ocean called "the end of the earth?"
"Because," explains Gallo, "the sea floor is
created at the shallow mid-ocean ridges, and is destroyed along
the world's great trenches, i.e. the end of the Earth!"
In 1987 Gallo was invited by Dr. Robert Ballard (discoverer
of the wreck of RMS Titanic) to join his team at the Woods Hole
Oceanographic Institution as the Assistant Director of the Center
for Marine Exploration. In his present role he works closely
with scientists and engineers at the forefront of global exploration
and discovery. He has participated in numerous expeditions to
the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans and to the Mediterranean
Sea. Most recently he was co-expedition leader during an exploration
of RMS Titanic and the German battleship Bismarck, using Russian
He maintains close working relationships with scientists, filmmakers,
and media broadcasters (Discovery Channel, History Channel,
National Geographic, PBS). He was instrumental in the development
of the JASON PROJECT and is presently involved in the development
of the FIRST Lego League Ocean Odyssey.
Gallo has lectured extensively nationally and internationally.
He was twice nominated and once presented with a Computerworld-Smithsonian
Award and is a recipient of the John J. Conley medal, both for
communicating science to the public.
Gallo's visit is sponsored by the Sustainable Futures Institute;
Western U.P. Center for Science, Math, & Environmental Education;
Michigan Tech Center for Water and Society; Michigan Tech Department
of Chemistry; and the MTU Committee for Campus Enrichment.