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Harbour Festival 2008

30 August 2008

Guiding Light at the Harbour Festival

Hundreds of visitors to this year’s Cardiff Harbour Festival enjoyed stepping aboard Guiding Light, the University’s research vessel which provides unique new perspectives of Wales’ marine environment.

Guiding Light, the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences’ research vessel is an 11 metre catamaran equipped with the latest geophysical equipment and navigational systems, enabling people to view the underwater world of Cardiff Bay.

Dr Chris Wooldridge, a senior lecturer at the School, moored the vessel for the three-day event, demonstrating the on-board scientific equipment as well as giving young people the chance to pose for a photograph in the Captain’s seat. Underwater cameras fitted to the vessel reveal images of the sea bed and fish species, and visitors were able to use the boat’s seabed 'grab', a device that samples sediment from the sea floor.

A Cardiff University marquee, organised by the University’s Community Engagement team, also showcased some of the School’s important marine research projects at the Festival. The Schools of Biosciences and Social Sciences were also represented in the marquee alongside several research centres including the Severn Estuary Partnership, run from the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences and the Sea Farers Institute.

Guiding Light supports the School’s research and teaching activities and is also employed as a floating classroom in a number of community based programmes designed to bring the underwater world to a wider audience.