Future of Marine Seismic Capabilities Workshop

Wednesday, January 16, 2019


NSF’s Division of Ocean Sciences is sponsoring an April 1-3, 2019 facilitated workshop in Alexandria, Virginia to address plans for future 3D and deep crustal seismic data acquisition for NSF-funded basic research in the marine geosciences.  The meeting will necessarily be limited to about 40 participants.  We invite researchers interested in participating to submit a statement of interest for this Future of Marine Seismic Capabilities Workshop via SurveyMonkey to:


NSF has established 2020 as the final year of operation of the NSF-owned research vessel R/V Marcus G Langseth (RV  MGL).  They seek guidance from the marine seismic research community regarding how to best replace this capability, with the following caveats:

  1. A future seismic research vessel should not be owned by NSF; and
  2. NSF’s annual budget to support the cost of ship operations, including shipboard technical staff, will not exceed $50 million over five years.

In August 2017, NSF sought proposals to replace the RV MGL capability in solicitation NSF 17-563, “Provision of Marine Seismic Capabilities to the US Research Community.”   However, after review, all proposals submitted for consideration under that solicitation were declined.

The goal of the Future of Marine Seismic Capabilities Workshop is to provide the basis for a new solicitation by NSF for proposals to address the community’s requirements for a RV MGL replacement beyond 2020.  The workshop will focus on a few specific recommendations to be prepared ahead of the meeting.  It is anticipated that the workshop will lead to a solicitation that will be issued by NSF during summer 2019, with a goal to make an award before the end of the year.

Some background documents are available at:


In addition, we plan to prepare two webcasts, one in late January and the second in late February, to outline the options to be considered at the April meeting.

For more information, please contact Alexander Shor (shor@soest.hawaii.edu).