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A $7 million global competition challenging teams to push the boundaries of ocean technologies by creating solutions that advance the autonomy, scale, speed, depths and resolution of ocean exploration.

The success of this prize will allow us to fully explore and map the ocean floor, and uncover our planets greatest wonder and resource for the benefit of humanity. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s $1 million bonus prize will incentivize teams to develop technologies to detect the source of chemical and biological signals underwater.

Teams will compete in two rounds of testing that:

Must launch from shore or air and, with restricted human intervention, their entries will have limited number of hours to explore the competition area (at depths of 2000 and 4000 meters) to produce:

1. a high resolution bathymetric map
2. images of a specified object
3. identify archaeological, biological or geological features

Read about the competition

Help us discover the world beneath the sea

Get involved. Follow the competition.


  • Only 5% of the ocean has been explored yet it feeds over 2 billion & provides more than 50% of our oxygen
  • 3 million shipwrecks are lying on the seafloor
  • We know more about the surface of Mars than we know about our ocean floor

Prize Progress

Prize Progress

Media Mentions

June 18, 2016

Deep space has long captivated our imaginations, but the deep ocean, right here on Earth, remains one of the most underexplored places known to humans.

June 16, 2016

This week, cartographers and experts meet in Monte Carlo, to discuss their plans to map the ocean floor by 2030. BBC's Roland Pease reports on the ocean-mapping options.

May 2, 2016

Scientists discovered the hydromedusa jellyfish on April 24, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports. This discovery of a totally new jellyfish underscores just how much is left to learn about the ocean.

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