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This profile was last updated on 9/30/14  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.

Dr. William M. Balch

Wrong Dr. William M. Balch?

Nova Star. Senior Research Scient...

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
60 Bigelow Drive P.O. Box 380
East Boothbay, Maine 04544
United States

Company Description: While at Harvard, Bigelow made a most important alliance with Professor Alexander Agassiz who was known for his explorations in the Pacific Ocean. Although they did...   more
Background

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations

35 Total References
Web References
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean ...
www.centralmaine.com, 30 Sept 2014 [cached]
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences' truck boards the Nova Star. Senior Research Scientist William Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time.
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Some evening this October when the weather forecast calls for clear skies, William Balch and three other researchers from the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences will drive a truck into the belly of the Nova Star ferry.
The truck carries a 20-foot container that serves as their laboratory.
Additional Images Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences' truck boards the Nova Star. Senior Research Scientist William Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time. Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences' truck boards the Nova Star. Senior Research Scientist William Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time.
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Senior Research Scientist William Balch of Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences inside his truck as he waits to board the Nova Star. Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time. Senior Research Scientist William Balch of Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences inside his truck as he waits to board the Nova Star. Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time.
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"We're using the ferry as an ocean research vessel," said Balch, a senior research scientist at Bigelow, based in East Boothbay.
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Because phytoplankton are food for fish larvae, a lower abundance of phytoplankton could mean lower numbers of adult fish populations years from now, Balch said.
Since the Nova Star began operating on May 15, Balch and his team have made five trips to Yarmouth and back.
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Moreover, Balch enters the data into a national database so all scientists can access it to carry out their research, Thomas said.
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The ferry operation across the Gulf of Maine gives researchers a huge advantage because it is much less expensive than relying on research vessels or fishing boats, Balch said. Additionally, research vessels must be scheduled years in advance. A stretch of bad weather could ruin a whole trip, since data collection occurs only under clear skies. The satellites can't make measurements when it's cloudy. Because the Nova Star makes daily runs, Balch said, he can use weather forecasts to determine when the skies are clear enough for a trip.
"The ferry is the reason we can be out there on clear-sky days," he said.
Pinpointing collection days enhances Bigelow's ability to collect data. It supplies NASA with about 20 percent of its validated ocean observations.
Balch collects the data during the ferry's daytime journey from Yarmouth to Portland, since the satellites make measurements within a couple hours of noon. He and three colleagues work in the cramped laboratory during the entire passage.
The researchers have found some interesting trends. In 2012, Balch published a paper that documented the fivefold decline in the growth rate of phytoplankton, the critical single-celled plants that ultimately support the region's fisheries.
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Balch said the changes now occurring at the bottom of the food web in the Gulf of Maine are complex but significant, given how they can affect adult fish populations in years to come.
A time series that takes place over many years is the best way for scientists to understand these connections, he said, so he plans to keep collecting data as long as possible.
"As long as the ferry keeps on running," he said.
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences :: Staff Directory
www.bigelow.org, 11 Feb 2014 [cached]
William Balch
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean ...
www.centralmaine.com, 30 Sept 2014 [cached]
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences' truck boards the Nova Star. Senior Research Scientist William Balch uses the Nova Star to study the distribution of phytoplankton in space and time.
William ...
www.bigelow.org, 11 Feb 2014 [cached]
William Balch
...
William Balch
...
William M. Balch Senior Research Scientist
William M. Balch | ...
tos.org [cached]
William M. Balch | Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, East Boothbay, ME, USA
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