MEET THE Hydrography FACULTY & SENIOR RESEARCHERS
Dr. Dixon’s research uses satellite geodesy and remote sensing data (GPS, InSAR) to study Earth surface and subsurface processes, including earthquakes and volcano deformation, mountain building, coastal subsidence, ground water extraction and glacier motion. He leads the University of South Florida's Geodesy Laboratory which uses microwave-based geodetic systems (GPS, satellite InSAR, and ground-based radar) to investigate changes in the Earth's land and water surfaces. The geodetic data allow study of a variety of natural and anthropogenic processes, including plate motion, strain accumulation on earthquake faults, mountain building, volcano deformation, and subsidence of urban and coastal areas. Their work is sponsored by NSF, DOE, NASA and ONR.
Ph.D., Imperial College London (University of London), 2007
Office Phone: 727.553.3415
CV: View PDF
Southern Ocean Science Website
Google scholar page
Research: Past changes in Earth’s cryosphere, Geomorphological Processes in Sub-Ice and Open-Ocean Sea-Floor Environments, Antarctic Continental Margin Evolution, Sub-Antarctic Climate History
Dr. Graham is a marine scientist, studying the link between ice sheets and the geological record. His research interests are focused on uncovering the histories, mechanisms, and drivers of past glacial and environmental change as recorded by high-latitude ocean floors and marine sedimentary records, as well as improving knowledge of the physical processes that govern the evolution of glacial and marine environments. Working from the glacier front to the deep sea, Dr Graham’s current research agenda is motivated by a set of questions steered towards the grand challenges faced by environmental and Antarctic science in the 21st century: how quickly, by how much, through what processes, and in response to what triggers do ice sheets and glaciers change over timescales not captured by observational records? An ongoing major objective of his work is to produce records of past ice‐sheet change at the poles that are significantly longer than satellite observations, providing the critical centennial to millennial context for changes to our warming planet and rising seas. Another key aspect is to study the processes of glacial environments using geophysical and geological tools to provide insight into modern and future ice-sheet behaviour. Dr Graham works routinely with glaciologists, oceanographers, and biologists to connect modern and palaeo processes in ice-sheet settings and increasingly looks to bridge ancient and contemporary systems in his research.
Dr. Graham received his PhD from Imperial College London in 2007. He was post-doctoral researcher at the British Antarctic Survey from 2007 through 2013, where his research emphasis shifted from seismic investigations of northwest Europe’s shallow seas, to the geomorphology of the sea bed around Antarctica for which he is now widely renowned. Dr. Graham received a NERC New Investigator Award in 2012 to study the glacial and climatic history of sub-Antarctic South Georgia. He was the 2013 recipient of the Laws Prize, awarded to young scientists for outstanding work worthy of recognition in the field of polar research. From 2013 to 2017, Dr Graham worked at the University of Exeter, in the UK, as Lecturer and, latterly, as Senior Lecturer. At UoE, he taught specialisms in glacial geology and ocean-floor exploration, led large undergraduate residential courses in research skills, and ran a week-long field class in glacial geology in Iceland. He received numerous teaching award nominations and awards for collaboration during his time at the university. Between 2015-2017, Dr Graham was Co-Investigator on a NERC-IODP Phase 2 site survey project, studying the seismostratigraphic expression of ice and ocean records contained within deep-sea sediment drifts along the Antarctic Peninsula margin. He is currently member of the PI team on an NSFOPP-NERC funded project, ‘THOR: Thwaites Offshore Research’, working as part of a 5-year Joint Research Program (the International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration) studying the future evolution of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica. Dr Graham currently serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Glaciology.
Dr. Graham became Associate Professor in Geological Oceanography at the College of Marine Science at USF in August 2019. A new group – SESAME (Sea-floor Survey and Exploration of Southern OceAn Marine Environments) – will form around his interests in the coming years. SESAME will serve to retain and combine Dr Graham’s diverse range of research interests and active projects into a single program, supported by a new state-of-the-art geophysical lab space set to open at USF in 2020. Innovative marine survey techniques underpin the research group’s forward-looking plans, which seek to employ autonomous and underwater vehicles to explore hard-to-reach sub-ice environments, and use high resolution sonar, seismic equipment, and sampled sediments to study sea-floor glacial environments in unprecedented detail.
Research: Coastal regions throughout the world are experiencing the impacts of sea-level rise and increased coastal hazards from inundation, storms, and erosion. Detailed knowledge of coastal processes and evolution are critical for understanding vulnerabilities to the various hazards in both natural and built systems. Coastal communities have a growing need for coastal science experts to aid in the development of sound sea-level rise adaptation plans. My research focuses on the geomorphic evolution of coastal systems ranging from barrier islands to rocky coasts and estuarine systems – understanding how coasts are changing now and have changed in the past is critical towards understanding what may happen in the future. Potential future coastal response can be modeled in the context of probabilistic frameworks and the models very dependent on high-resolution elevation data of both the coastline and the adjacent seafloor. I am the coordinator of the Florida Coastal Mapping Program, an initiative to coordinate across federal and state partners to realize the vision of having high-resolution data available for all of Florida’s coastal waters in a decade. Data collected as part of this initiative has application across numerous sectors including research, navigation, restoration, storm surge modeling, fisheries management, and community resilience planning.
Kristopher Krasnosky, PhD
Senior Research Associate, Center for Ocean Mapping and Innovative Technologies, College of Marine Science
PhD., University of Rhode Island, Graduate School of Oceanography, 2020
Dr. Krasnosky has over 10 years experience in mapping, modeling, remote sensing, and robotics. He has a doctorate in ocean mapping and 8 years of field experience aboard oceanographic vessels. Kris has developed many technologies such as machine-learning bathymetric modeling software, real time ROV/AUV high-resolution mapping packages, and cutting edge mapping vessels. Through his graduate and academic career, he worked as a licensed captain on vessels in the Great Lakes, Hawaii, and Atlantic Coast.
Research Faculty, Project Engineer, College of Marine Science
MME, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, 2007
Office Phone: 727-553-3976
CV: View PDF
CMS Ocean Technology Group
Research: Technology Applications, Autonomous Systems, AUVs, ROVs, Sensor Development, Circulation Measurement, Harmful Algal Bloom Evolution, Fish Stock Analysis, Habitat Mapping, Water Column Analysis, Seafloor Measurements and Mapping
The utilization of technology to assist in understanding oceanographic systems is increasingly essential to making new discoveries. Technological innovations can provide new insight for understanding how the ocean works when properly utilized. This can be realized by creating, optimizing, or even re-purposing technology to look at the environment in new innovative ways that can provide new insights or enable significant efficiencies in the collection of observations. My tenure at USF has focused on this in collaboration with researchers and other engineers to facilitate the collection of observations to further research endeavors.
Efforts of note include contributions to: Sensors enabling underwater mass spectrometry, in-situ plankton imaging, water column radiometry, high resolution in-situ chemical analysis, tagging and tracking of biological specimens, optical and acoustic bottom measurement and classification, and acoustic analysis of the water column, soundscape, and sea floor.
Platform development and operation such as profiling floats, profiling gliders, remote operated vehicles, autonomous underwater vehicles, autonomous surface vehicles, tow-bodies, buoys, drifters, and shore side stations.
Research: ocean circulation; coastal oceanography; ocean observing and analysis; numerical modeling; Karenia brevis red tide; Piney Point effluent plume; Deepwater Horizon oil spill; storm surge; coastal upwelling; Gulf of Mexico Loop Current
Dr. Yonggang Liu currently serves as the Director of the Ocean Circulation Lab at USF College of Marine Science. He is a physical oceanographer, aiming to better understand the ocean circulation on the West Florida Shelf, including the interactions/exchanges of water properties between the estuaries, the shelf, and the offshore (Loop Current) system of the Gulf of Mexico. He uses both in situ observations and numerical models in coastal ocean research, and he is interested in applying physical oceanography to marine environmental issues, such as wastewater plume modeling, oil spill tracking and Karenia brevis red tide predictions. He also develops and applies novel data analysis methods in meteorology and oceanography.
Mark E. Luther
Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1982
Office Phone: 727.553.1528
CV: View PDF
Ocean Modeling and Prediction Laboratory Website
Research: Maritime Safety and Security; Real-Time Ocean Observation Systems; Numerical Models of Ocean Circulation; Coastal Water Quality
Dr. Luther is Director of the Ocean Monitoring and Prediction Lab in the University of South Florida College of Marine Science, where he co-directs the Coastal Ocean Monitoring and Prediction System. Dr. Luther’s research involves the combination of real-time ocean observations with numerical models of ocean currents and processes and their application to various problems ranging from maritime safety and security to water quality in estuaries to variability in large-scale ocean circulation and its relation to climate change. He has provided operation and maintenance support for the NOAA/NOS Tampa Bay Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System (TB-PORTS) since 1995. He is a founding member and past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Alliance for Coastal Technologies, a NOAA-funded partnership of research institutions, resource managers, and private sector companies dedicated to fostering the development and adoption of effective and reliable sensors and platforms for coastal ocean monitoring. He presently serves on the Tampa Bay Harbor Safety and Security Committee Technical Subcommittee and the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council Agency on Bay Management. He is Chairman of the Board for the Secrets of the Sea Marine Exploration Center and Aquarium and is chairman of the International Seakeepers Society Science Advisory Council.
And ultimately the combination of platforms and sensors to optimize the collection of variables of interest.
These efforts have enabled numerous collaborations resulting in hundreds of days at sea supporting these efforts, including currently working primarily in the eastern Gulf of Mexico and Southeastern US coastal waters by facilitating large scale fish habitat mapping efforts and management of USF’s underwater glider fleet.
Research Professor and St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership Peter R. Betzer Endowed Chair
Ph.D., University of Massachusetts-Amherst, 1984
Office Phone: 727.553.3367
CV: View CV
Research: Population dynamics of exploited marine species; impacts of fishing and other anthropogenic stresses on marine ecosystems; ecosystem modeling and analysis
Dr. Murawski is a fisheries biologist and marine ecologist involved in understanding the impacts of human activities on the sustainability of ocean ecosystems. He has developed approaches for understanding the impacts of fishing on marine fish complexes exploited in mixed-species aggregations. Additionally, his work on impacts of marine protected areas and other management options has formed the scientific basis for regulation. Such assessments can help inform investments to rebuild the Gulf of Mexico from effects of the oil spill, loss of juvenile nursery areas, nutrient enrichment, overfishing and other factors.
Research: Marine Magnetics; Mid-Ocean Ridge and Hotspot Interactions; Plate Tectonics; Wax Analog Modeling of Seafloor Spreading Processes, Seafloor Mapping of Fish Habitats, Artificial Reefs, Coral Reefs, Mines, Paleoshorelines, and Hydrothermal Vents
These research interests have been addressed with oceanographic seafloor mapping expeditions to the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Analyses of multibeam, magnetics, gravity, side-scan sonar are made in conjunction with insight from a seafloor spreading analog wax model. Ongoing projects include: Plate tectonic reconstruction of the Pacific-Nazca plates, Off-axis volcanism along the Easter Seamount Chain, and benthic habitat studies around Florida and the Bahamas.
Senior Research Associate, Center for Ocean Mapping and Innovative Technologies, College of Marine Science
PhD., University of Southern Mississippi, 2019
Dr. Stephan O’Brien’s portfolio focuses on sediment and particulate matter transport pathways as well as seabed mapping. He utilizes numerical models, remote sensing, and marine instrumentation to study the adverse effects of environmental conditions such as cold fronts on coastal erosion. His research provides insight into the transport of sediments along the seabed from the nearshore region to the continental shelf. Other interests include generating geomorphology maps using multibeam data to assist in marine conservation efforts and environmental surveys.