December 8, 2008

Scripps Oceanography to build marine lab

The U.S. Department of Commerce has awarded the Scripps Institution of Oceanography $12 million to construct a state-of-the-art ocean science research lab.

The award, from the department's National Institute of Standards and Technology, will allow Scripps to construct the Marine Ecosystem Sensing, Observation and Modeling Laboratory on its University of California-San Diego campus. Officials said the new lab will conduct research on marine ecosystem forecasting and become a resource for other national and international ocean science organizations that address the management of marine resources.

The $12 million award will provide nearly half of the funding for the research building. Total construction and outfitting will cost about $26.5 million, with the balance of funding coming from Scripps/UC-San Diego and private support. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2010 and finish in 2012.

The Scripps proposal was one of three selected in a merit competition among 93 applicants. The two other grants were awarded to UC-Berkeley, which received nearly $11 million for a Center for Integrated Precision and Quantum Measurement, and to the University of Florida, which received $1.2 million for construction of an Aquatic Animal Health Facility.