Ocean builders – Alexa Runyan uses 3-D models and novel technologies to discover how coral reef architecture affects its inhabitants and visitors | Rising Sea Voices Podcast
Follow Alexa through the pivotal moments of her early career
In this episode, Alexa Runyan, Ph.D. student in Ocean Engineering at the University of Rhode Island, explains how the call of the ocean deflected her from a musical career and led her to study coral reefs. Alexa explains her undergraduate work in Dr. John H. R. Burns’ lab on the structural complexity of coral reefs using a 3-dimensional (3D) approach to understand how the reef architecture affects organisms such as invertebrates and fish. Now the awardee of a highly competitive Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation, Alexa will continue this work with Dr. Brennan Phillips. This time, instead of scuba-diving to collect data on Hawaiian reefs, Alexa explains how she will use novel technologies and remotely operated underwater vehicles (ROVs) to explore deep-sea reefs in Bermuda. Her dream: mapping the whole ocean seafloor!
We hope you will enjoy this episode and join us monthly to discover new guests and their work! In the meantime, look below for Alexa’s bio and contact information.
Alexa received her Bachelor of Science in Marine Science with a minor in Physics and a certificate in Data Science from the University of Hawai’i at Hilo. Her undergraduate research focused on 3D reconstruction of coral reefs in the Hawaiian Islands for long-term monitoring and quantitative ecology. Now a Ph.D. student in Ocean Engineering, she is interested in the development of novel technologies for deep-sea exploration to satisfy her curiosity of the unknown. You can contact Alexa at firstname.lastname@example.org.