•  Divers swim past sponges covered in brittle stars in Panama 's Bocas del Toro region.

    Divers swim past brittle stars in Panama 's Bocas del Toro.

    Scientific Divers-in-Training swim past sponges covered in brittle stars in Panama 's Bocas del Toro region near the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. 
    Copyright © 2016 Smithsonian Institution, Photo: Laurie M. Penland

  • Marine GEO &TMON Plant Pop Survey

    MarineGeo & Tennenbaum Marine Observatories Network (TMON)

    MarineGeo & TMON are a long-term, worldwide research programs focused on understanding coastal marine life and its role in maintaining resilient ecosystems around the world.
    Copyright © 2015 Smithsonian Institution, Photo: Laurie M. Penland

  • Seal and Sea Lion Pool Maintenance

    American Trail Exhibit, National Zoological Park

    American Trail showcases species of North American wildlife. Diver's maintain habitats for the Seals and Sea Lions of this exhibit.

  • Smithsonian Research Scientist Dr. Matthieu Leray retrieves ARMS in Belize

    Autonomous Reef Marine Structures - Measuring Marine Life

    Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures help scientists study coral reef diversity around the world. 
    Copyright © 2012 Smithsonian Institution, Photo: Laurie M. Penland

  • Acropora palmata study site off the island of Carrie Bow Cay, Belize

    Acropora palmata study site off the island of Carrie Bow

    Long-term research site of Acropora palmata (Elkhorn Coral) near Caribbean Coral Reef Ecosystems Research Station at Carrie Bow, Belize.
    Copyright © 2013 Smithsonian Institution, Photo: Laurie M. Penland

  • Smithsonian Research Divers Sample Biofouling on Ship Hull in Bermuda

    Invasive Species Research - Marine Biofouling

    Smithsonian Scientific Divers seek a better understanding of how invasive species are changing ecosystems around the world.
    Copyright © 2014 Smithsonian Institution, Photo: Laurie M. Penland

Smithsonian Scientific Diving Program

​The Smithsonian Scientific Diving Program (SDP) supports underwater research at the Smithsonian Institution (SI) by establishing and implementing safety standards and procedures for all SI diving activities.  The SDP operates to ensure all diving operations are conducted safely and efficiently, with safety being the primary focus.

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For Science Divers

If your research involves potential diving under the auspices of the Smithsonian, this section of the SDP website is designed specifically for you.

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Where are we diving today?

Search Smithsonian Research results in SCIENTIFIC PUBLICATIONS.

Pterois is an invasive species in the Caribbean.
Pterois (Lionfish) is an invasive species in the Caribbean. 
Copyright © 2012 Smithsonian Institution, Photo by Laurie M. Penland

 

Learn about some of the SCIENTIFIC PROJECTS which compel Smithsonian Scientists to dive underwater. 

Dr. Ian Davidson collects samples from hull of ship to test for invasive species
Dr. Ian Davidson collects samples from hull of ship to test for invasive species

 

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