Mission Planning and Coordination
Mission planning essentially begins when a scientist submits a proposal. Center staff review all proposals for operational feasibility and cost before the proposal is sent out for scientific peer review. Once a proposal has been selected for funding, mission scheduling begins and staff are assigned to support the project. Scheduling involves coordination among center staff, scientists, and vendors to ensure that resources (personnel, equipment, and facilities) are available. A cruise plan is developed for every mission and is submitted to NURP headquarters for review and approval. Deviations from these approved plans are closely monitored.
Mission coordinators are responsible for three phases of the mission process:
- Pre-mission: communication with principal investigators; ordering supplies, materials, and equipment; and initiating various administrative actions such as subcontracts and bid specifications.
- Mission: co-manage at-sea operations with chief scientist and vessel crew; serve as dive supervisor, support diver, ROV pilot, or technical support specialist.
- Post-mission: inventory equipment, supplies and materials; submit at-sea documentation; complete post-mission reports; distribute products to scientists.