SMAST Facilities

Each SMAST laboratory is equipped with instrumentation to support its particular line of research.

  • Unmanned underwater vehicles are used to measure temperature, salinity, oxygen and other parameters as they ply the oceans, sometimes for weeks per mission.
  • Coastal radar measures surface waves on fishing grounds hundreds of kilometers off shore.
  • A dedicated supercomputer performs modeling runs of ocean and climate scenarios that represent years of real time.
  • Sea floor video equipment surveys the entire Northwest Atlantic sea scallop resource.
  • Estuarine and ocean equipment take samples from the marine environment that are analyzed ashore by mass spectrometers and an array of auxiliary instrumentation. 

In addition, SMAST’s institutional facilities support research activities across the board.

SMAST facilities include:  

  • Optic Acoustic Test Tank‌A 90,000 gallon underwater optic and acoustic test tank.
  • A 2,200 square-foot seawater research lab with plentiful raw, filtered, heated or chilled seawater.
  • A greenhouse for the growth and long-term maintenance of aquatic photosynthetic organisms under natural light.
  • Three temperature-controlled rooms for long-term behavioral and physiological experiments and acclimation of marine organisms for culture and reproduction.
  • Fifteen research laboratories.
  • The R/V Lucky Lady, a 50-foot, diesel-powered research boat with winch and wire for sampling.
  • A docking pier extended into Clark's Cove, permitting the loading and unloading of vessels and shallow-water sampling, and housing the pumping station that supplies water to the seawater research lab.
  • A two-story, 32,000-square-foot building on Clark's Cove, which provides access to Buzzards Bay, and a suite of offices across New Bedford Harbor in Fairhaven.
  • Classroom equipment for video conferencing and live distance learning.

For more information, contact: Eric Lyonnais, Facilities Manager, at 508-910-6304 or