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NASA's mission includes improving our understanding of the oceans through cutting-edge research by implementing technological advances, space-borne global observing capabilities, and integrating new knowledge of the Earth system into predictive models. To develop a predictive understanding of global ocean ecosystem health, productivity, biodiversity, and trophic dynamics, we first need to observe these factors and processes, and develop conceptual models of how the system works. Four main research topics address the overall programmatic goals of the ocean biology and biogeochemistry program. Each of the topics identified addresses feedbacks related to humankind:
On a regular basis, the OBB program solicits proposals addressing research in these themes with the goal of furthering our understanding of mechanisms and interactions that sustain life on our ocean planet.