Edie Widder is one of the world's leading experts in bioluminescence. Her pioneering oceanographic work has included being part of the first team to capture a giant squid on film.
Dr. Edith (Edie) Widder is a former senior scientist at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution and the Founder of the Ocean Research & Conservation Association (ORCA), the USA's first technology-based marine conservation association.
Edie's doctorate is in Neurobiology, but she is also a qualified Scientific Research Pilot, with certifications that qualify her to dive deep diving suits and single-person untethered submersibles. She has made over 250 dives in submersibles, and her research has been featured in BBC, PBS, Discovery Channel and National Geographic television productions.
Edie is a specialist in bioluminescence (the light chemically produced by many ocean organisms), and she has been a leader in helping to design and invent new submersible instrumentation and equipment to enable unobtrusive deep-sea observations. Working with engineers, she has conceived and built several unique devices that enable humans to see beneath the waves in new ways.
In the summer of 2012, Edie was part of a team that filmed the giant squid in its natural habitat for the first time ever. Her innovative work earned her the 2018 Explorers Club Citation of Merit; she is one of just six women to have earned this honour.
More than 75% of sea creatures produce their own light. How do they do it, and what can we learn from this incredible marine firework display?