Windward Passage Project
The Windward Passage, located between Cuba and Haiti, is a major conduit between the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. It is a site of complex currents, mixing and exchange of water that have been little explored despite the historical importance of this region as a major shipping route. This region also represents a very active portion of the northern Caribbean plate boundary, where several geologic (seismic and tectonic) features and processes occur along the seafloor beneath the Windward Passage. These structures and processes come together to make Haiti a very high risk for catastrophic events like the 2010 earthquake that took a tremendous human toll. For these reasons, it is crucial to explore the seafloor in this tectonically active and recently reconfigured region. We will also conduct at least one dive within the territorial waters of Navassa Island - a U.S. holding that has never been explored - to document new deep coral communities, drowned reefs, and make unknown underwater discoveries.