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Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute

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Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute

Contact us:
Auke Bay Laboratories
Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute
17109 Pt. Lena Loop Road
Juneau, AK 99801
(907) 789-6000
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In 2007, the Alaska Fisheries Science Center formally received the keys to the new Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute at Lena Point. The historic transfer of responsibility for TSMRI (tez-marie) from NOAA to the care of the Center was the culmination of a 15-year effort to create Alaska’s largest fisheries research facility. The 66,000 square feet of office and laboratory space at TSMRI is the catalyst for the growth of Alaskan fisheries research necessary to meet the expanding information needs of the NMFS Ecosystem Approach to Management and the recently re-authorized Magnuson Stevens Act. TSMRI is a catalyst because it provides conference facilities, laboratory capacity and working space necessary to bring together scientists from the many specialties necessary to understand and manage Alaska’s fisheries resources. TSMRI continues the long and proud tradition of the Auke Bay Laboratory.

TSMRI is the home of Auke Bay Laboratories, housing ABL reception, administration and scientific staff, along with essential services such as the ABL library, computer services and conference facilities. Offices for 84 scientists and staff are adjacent to the administration.

Conference facilities include a large central meeting room on the second floor which is divisible into two rooms, and a smaller first floor conference room with kitchen which opens onto an outside patio overlooking the water.

What sets TSMRI apart from past facilities is its modern laboratories, which provide not only a significant increase in space, but more importantly, major increases in the scientific capabilities of the labs and their safety equipment. In addition to chemistry, genetics, and biology laboratories, the laboratory building offers a large wet lab, a necropsy room equipped to handle small marine mammals and large fish and sharks, an ichthyology laboratory for sorting and identification of specimens, two large walk-in freezers, and a large day room for contractors and transient project personnel. The wet lab is a major advance for the Center with just under 2,000 sq ft of enclosed space, overhead electric power access, and 1,200 gallons per minute (gpm) of filtered sea water capacity. Another 4,000 sq ft adjacent to the enclosed wet lab is available for outdoor wet lab work. Four hundred gpm will be shared with the adjacent University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences (SFOS) facility.

The laboratories at TSMRI are especially well equipped for excellence in marine chemistry, genetics for fisheries management and public outreach. Excellence in marine chemistry has been promoted by the addition of equipment for photometry, chromatography, calorimetry and other types of analyses. A new CO2 analyzer supports development of ocean acidification research. Genetics and stock identification work has been augmented by gene sequencers, polymer chain reaction (PCR) thermal cyclers, and DNA extraction technologies. The long-standing outreach program Sea Week, which serves public school students in Juneau for 3 weeks each spring, received aquaria and educational displays that also serve during the rest of the year to welcome visitors as they enter the TSMRI atrium.

Another unique characteristic of TSMRI is that the facility has "gone green" by using 100% green energy to heat the building. From a starting point of 120,000 gallons of fuel oil burned per year in 2007, the facility now puts zero carbon into the environment. This was accomplished by reducing laboratory air flows through recommisioning, recovering heat from fume and canopy hood exhausts, and installing a heat pump to extract heat from the existing seawater system. TSMRI is now heating the entire research facility using the new heat pump. This heat pump, coupled with the hydroelecticity supplied by Alaska Electric Light and Power Company, means the facility is heated by 100% renewable green energy. The heat pump alone replaces 60,000 gallons of fuel annually, saving an estimated $130,000 of taxpayer dollars per year. Total cost savings for the entire green energy approach is estimated at $360,000 per year.

The ability of TSMRI to catalyze the growth of fisheries science in Alaska is shown by the new adjacent UAF facility. The new School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences Juneau facility (SFOSJ) will consist of 30,000 sq ft of offices, classrooms and laboratories dedicated to graduate and undergraduate education and research. The location of the SFOSJ on the NOAA campus at Lena Pt. continues the long and synergistic relationship between NMFS and UAF/SFOS which were neighbors for 30 years at Auke Bay.

For more information about TSMRI contact Phil Mundy, phil.mundy@noaa.gov .For further information on UAF/SFOS Juneau, contact  Keith Criddle, fisheries@sfos.uaf.edu.

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