Known for beautiful white sandy beaches and coral reefs, west Hawai’i is now threatened by climate change, droughts, fires, invasive species, and human impact. The impact on our ocean and coastal community has led to west Hawai’i being classified as an endangered ecosystem zone. The traditional life-ways of native Hawaiians and our community such as fishing, harvesting limu (seaweed), and salt-making have been disrupted and thus the social and economic fabric of our community has changed from one of subsistence living, to dependence on importing over 85-90% of our food and other household goods.
Together with our community partners, Liquid Robotics is dedicated to serving our ʻāina and working towards restoring the health of our ocean and coastal communities. As stewards, we work alongside the federal government, State of Hawai’i, Hawai’i County, and other local businesses and organizations to revitalize west Hawai’i through community-based initiatives.
Through outreach, Wave Gliders are able to provide accurate scientific weather and water quality data to assist natural resource managers make informed decisions that impact the health and future of our ʻāina and community. Liquid Robotics holds the vision of Kawaihae and west Hawai’i returning to a place of resiliency and sustainable economy.
Aloha ‘Āina bridges traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) with modern technology for ocean stewardship, conservation and community development. It demonstrates that ʻāina (nature) and culture are one, and documents the impact that humans have on the environment. Collaborations across governments, counties, private industry, non-governmental organizations and grassroots communities are key to the success of Aloha ‘Āina.
The Wave Glider data collected from Aloha ‘Āina in Hawai’i will be archived by NOAA and PacIOOS for anyone‘s use. It will also provide critical data for NOAA West Hawai’i Habitat Blueprint, including substantiating cesspool seepage into Puakō Bay, and contribute towards the community-based marine planning project for Maunalua Bay, and the World-Wide Voyage Promise to Pae ʻāina water quality data base.
Liquid Robotics enthusiastically accepted the invitation to create a permanent Wave Glider exhibit at Mokupāpapa Discovery Center, Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument and UNESCO World Heritage Site in downtown Hilo. Part of a larger “voyaging” themed exhibit, the Wave Glider is on display with an interactive display emphasizing high technology tools instrumental in the advancement of ocean science.
As a regular host for class tours and discussions, we are also working with local schools and communities to develop STEM advising and volunteerism on a number of projects. This ongoing engagement is a testament to our commitment to community involvement, specifically with local educational organizations.
Our Hawai’i staff serve as judges and advisers for various Hawai’i Island remotely operated vehicle competitions (MATE, FIRST), and various other technology and educational events.