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About the Advanced Imaging and Visualization Laboratory

The Advanced Imaging and Visualization Laboratory (AIVL), under the direction of WHOI research specialist William Lange, specializes in the development of new imaging sensors and imaging techniques for the collection, processing, assessment, and interpretation of scientific imagery for the scientific, educational and entertainment communities.

Over the last two decades the lab has developed and built innovative deep-sea imaging and telemetry systems for use in ROVS, AUVs, manned and unmanned aerial vehicles, diver operated systems as well as deep diving human occupied vehicles.  AIVL’s precision imaging systems have been used all around the world in everything from underwater scientific and archaeological surveys to high altitude animal health assessments and the documentation of rocket launches. In addition to supporting the scientific community, the imagery collected has been used for educational exhibits in numerous museums, science centers and repurposed for various television and film edutainment programs.


  • Specializes in the image system design, development, and acquisition of imagery from unique and hostile environments, including those found at the deepest depths of the world’s oceans.
  • Maintains a large inventory of field-ready imaging systems; including specialized aerial and underwater systems for use on aircraft, submarines, remotely operated vehicles, autonomous underwater vehicles, and diver operated platforms.
  • Is a complete post-production facility with the ability to acquire, post-process, edit and produce films in formats including Digital Imax, 3D HDTV, Full Dome, 3D Full Dome, Truncated Full Dome, Immersive and Panoramic, Multi-spectral and traditional HDTV.
  • Has one of the world’s largest high resolution image collections for natural history, scientific, and marine archeological images. We are currently developing treatments for a number of educational 2D and 3D films with a focus on the Museum Community.

(Advanced Imaging and Visualization Laboratory)

(Advanced Imaging and Visualization Laboratory)

Re-envisioning Underwater Imaging

The Advanced Imaging and Visualization Laboratory (AIVL) at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) working with Marine Imaging Technologies has developed a revolutionary new multi-function, underwater imaging system capable of generating ultra-high definition television (UHDTV) video, 2-D mosaic imaging, and 3-D optical models of seafloor objects and environments. The new state-of-the-art technology is currently being field-tested on several submerged shipwreck sites in both the U.S. and Europe. MORE

First View of Underwater Eruption

December 17, 2009 — For the first time scientists have seen molten lava flowing from a deep-ocean seafloor volcano, exploding into 35 foot long streams of red and gold and rising as bubbles as much as 3 feet across. The expedition to West Mata volcano, near American Samoa, was led by UW Oceanographer, Joe Resing.