Founding partners



Working together to accelerate discovery

Ocean Census is enabling field research expeditions globally, helping scientists to operate from the surface to full ocean depth and capture, digitise and preserve ocean life.

We work dynamically with our Alliance, host nations, scientists and institutes to get specialists from our Science Network where they need to be, and provide the advanced technology and support they need.

Through funding, technology and media support, and by deploying our mobile laboratory, we’re supporting expeditions around the globe to contribute to our core mission.

There are a number of ways that specialists can join an expedition and opportunities also exist for individuals and teams with science and crew skills. Read on to find out more.

Types of Expedition

Flagship Expeditions

Co-produced with partnering research institutes and funded solely or in part by Ocean Census.

Official Expeditions

Led and organised by partners and contributing new species discovered to our overall global goal.

Partner Expeditions

Giving specialists from the Science Network and media team the opportunity to join an expedition led by partners.

Citizen Science Expeditions

Shore and sea-based programmes to discover ocean life undertaken by the public and civil society.

Partner with us

Expedition partnerships

We collaborate with a range of vessel owners, research institutes and philanthropic organisations to fulfill our mission in national waters and in the High Seas. This includes:

  • Co-developing Flagship Expeditions with us, either with chartered vessels or by applying for time on national research fleets.
  • Aligning your own upcoming expeditions and contributing your new species to the global mission.
  • Inviting specialists from our science community or media team to join your expedition, with our support.
  • Supplying vessels or technology that facilitates the discovery of ocean life.
  • Developing, testing, deploying or innovating subsea technologies to advance the discovery of ocean life.
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Arctic Deep

3 May - 24 May 2024

The Arctic remains one of the least explored regions on Earth. This is especially true of the Arctic deep ocean, much of its seafloor in Arctic latitudes challenging to explore.

However, within this expansive, deep, and cold environment lie biodiverse habitats teeming with species, many of which remain undiscovered by science.

This groundbreaking expedition is led by The Nippon Foundation-Nekton Ocean Census Alliance, UiT (The Arctic University of Norway), and REV Ocean.

Dive deeper


Philippine Sea

27 April - 19 May 2024

Ocean Census Philippine Sea is a Participant Expedition to explore the Kyushu-Palau Ridge and Minami-Daito Jima Island areas in the north western Pacific.

As part of the wider JAMSTEC Ocean Shot Expedition, led by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), the Ocean Shot Research Grant, and NHK TV, two participant scientists from the Ocean Census Science Network are joining the cruise onboard JAMSTEC research vessel KAIMEI.

Dive deeper

Past expedition

Bounty Trough, New Zealand

8 February - 22 March 2024

The Bounty Trough New Zealand research cruise is a 21-day expedition onboard R/V. Tangaroa, followed by a workshop, undertaken jointly by Ocean Census and The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), with the participation of Ocean Census Science Network scientists.

Our ambition is to sample down to an incredible 5,000 metres in these under-explored waters.

Dive deeper

Past expedition


27 Nov - 17 Dec 2023

The Macaronesia Tenerife Submersible and Diver Expedition assembles a world-class coalition of expertise. Macaronesia is a biogeographical region of eastern-central Atlantic, straddling the equator from the Azores to the Canary Islands at the heart. This intense 21-day mission will be augmented by a species discovery workshop featuring leading experts from the Ocean Census Science Network.

Dive deeper

Past expedition

Johnston Atoll, Pacific

9 - 29 August 2023

Ocean Census joined forces with the Ocean Exploration Trust (OET) for a 27-day expedition to survey deep-sea biodiversity on the ancient seamounts surrounding Johnston Atoll, home to some of the most pristine marine ecosystems on Earth. Operations aboard the 68-metre E/V Nautilus deployed the dual-body ROV system and focused on exploring seafloor areas to maximum depths of 4,000 metres.

Dive deeper

Past expedition

Barents Sea, Arctic

29 April to 10 May 2023

The first expedition Ocean Census joined was the ‘AKMA3’ cruise, led by the University of Tromsø (The Arctic University of Norway), with collaborators REV Ocean.

Our taxonomists participated to discover life living on the seafloor, including around methane-rich, cold seeps at depths of 100m to 500m.

Species discovery focused on soft corals, glass sponges, sea pens, anemones, echinoids, polychaetes, brachiopods, crustaceans, nematodes and copepods.

Dive deeper

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