It’s called the “Smartfin” and it’s barely distinguishable from a fin you might see on a standard surfboard. This translucent, custom designed fin contains small, flat electronic boards that allow surfers to collect data while doing what they love the most, while also helping oceanographic researchers understand nearshore temperature variability in Southern California.
Avid Surfer and Research Engineer, Dr. Phil Bresnahan, leads the Smartfin Project at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. In this podcast, he talks with SonTek Application Engineers Dr. Xue Fan and Dr. Michael Hughes about his team that is working to see if Smartfins can be used to contribute to coastal climate change studies. He also talks about how Smartfins are being distributed to other scientists, ocean activists, surfers and the general public to build an engaged community of data-collecting citizen-scientists.