Oil Spill Response ROV KitLindsay Butters, Prince William Sound Science Center
Scope of Work:
The Prince William Sound Science Center requests $20,000 from the Prince William Sound Oil Spill Recovery Institute to support a one-year, science and technology education project that will develop a transportable student activity kit focused on oil spill science and robotic technology. The Oil Spill Response ROV Kit (Remotely Operated Vehicle Kit) will be a teacher and classroom-ready “stand-alone” education unit containing the materials needed to deliver lessons on marine oil spills and oil spill response technologies.
Using materials contained within the kit, teachers will provide instruction on the potential adverse impacts of oil spills on water and discuss technological challenges to oil spill cleanup. Students will use materials provided in the kit to construct Remote Operated Vehicles designed to clean up simulated oil (popcorn) spilled into a swimming pool, harbor, or pond. Students will compete to see what design best recover the spilled popcorn.
The ROV Kit will be available for loan by school teachers, informal and home school programs, and Scout/other youth groups. We will actively market the kit through our education contacts statewide and through targeted outreach to include a diverse array of student groups and communities.
Our five-year strategic education plan calls on us to expand the impact of oil spill curricula developed by the PWSSC beyond the Prince William Sound area, making them available to students and educators throughout Alaska. By incorporating the ROV Kit into our long-term education program (and fundraising efforts), we will help expand oil spill education outreach efforts. Integration of the kit into formal classroom, and informal science education programs will continue once the program is established with OSRI funds.
Our education program goal is to provide educational experiences and materials that will prepare future generations of recourse managers, educators, researchers, policymakers, and community leaders to understand and address issues affecting complex natural systems. We firmly believe that knowledge and skills in the application of technology are necessary for society to adapt and respond to environmental change. The ROV Kit is part of our effort to increase the curiosity and technological literacy of our students.