Amy L. Kukulya

Research Engineer
Senior AUV Operations Engineer
Principal Investigator

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Contact Information:
Work: 508-289-3689

Mailing Address:
266 Woods Hole Road, MS #10
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Woods Hole, MA 02543

Research Interests

Underwater vehicle system architecture for docking, navigation, communications, underwater archaeology, three-dimensional tracking of animals and under-ice capabilities; Development of science applications for underwater vehicles; Professional outreach communicator/speaker.

Awards, Professional Activities & Affiliations

  • Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education, Leadership into the 21st Century, 2018
  • Expert Witness on Sharks and Technology, Full Senate Hearing U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, July 18, 2018
  • Harvard Kennedy Business School Executive Program Class, Creating Collaborative Solutions, 2017
  • Society of Women Engineers Member, 2017-ongoing
  • Center for Marine Robotics, Network of Talent Member, 2016-ongoing
  • UCLA Technical Management Program, 2016
  • Recipient of the Linda Morse-Porteous Award for dedication to discovery, excellence and for serving as a role model to other women, 2015
  • Wowster Mentor and Outreach Professional, Appointed by MA Governor's Office, 2012- ongoing
  • IEEE Ocean Engineering Society, 2006 –ongoing
  • Retirement Task Force- Member, May 2009-June 2010
  • Woman’s Committee elected member, Webmaster, September 2007 (2 year)
  • ASLO, American Society for Limnology and Oceanography, 2004-2006


  • 50-Ton Masters, USCG Captain's License
  • Oceanographic Systems Engineering
  • Expedition Leader
  • Advanced First Aid & CPR
  • PADI Open Water SCUBA Certification
  • Public Speaker


  • B.S., Environmental Policy, Rutgers University


Amy Kukulya is a recognized authority in development and operations of autonomous underwater systems (AUVs) at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, specializing in scientific applications of AUVs.  She is currently a Research Engineer in the Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering Department and Project Manager and lead technical developer for under-ice oil detection and mapping projects.  Working with underwater robots has brought her from the Arctic to Antarctica. Her technical skills include configuration and operation of AUV systems, including navigation, imaging capabilities, data processing techniques and troubleshooting electrical systems. She has either led or participated in over 95 oceanographic expeditions to date. Apart from her technical skills, she is passionate about promoting education/outreach initiatives, and has been named a Wowster by the MA Governor's office. She is the lead developer of SharkCam as featured on Shark Week.  Her work has also been featured on several Discovery Channel and PBS productions as well as the Boston Globe, Washington Post and National Geographic Magazine.  Amy has also testified before the Senate and recently threw out the first pitch at a Boston Red Sox game.

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