NOBSKA Development Corporation

Industry Leader in 3D Acoustic Current Measurement

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Archie T. Morrison III, PhD.
Vice President of Engineering

Phone: 508-360-2393

As an Oceanographic Engineer, Archie T. Morrison III, PhD. is involved in instrument and system design and development of MAVS Acoustic Current Meters.

"I enjoy the challenge of designing and developing new instrumentation for research, particularly for ocean science.  I find satisfaction in this pursuit because it is often the creation of new observational capabilities that leads us to an improved or new understanding of the natural world.  I have developed instrument systems and software for biogeochemical and physical oceanographic investigations, fisheries research, and medical equipment. I specialize in current measurement technology and I remain interested in the behavior of continental shelf bottom boundary layers, especially their interaction with the sediment bed and their role in sediment entrainment and transport.  To study these phenomena, I have designed and deployed instruments capable of making spatially detailed velocity measurements through the steady and wave bottom boundary layers.  I also continue to be interested in the operation and use of unmanned vehicles for underwater research.  My work in this field has focused on characterizing the hydrodynamic behavior of these platforms and the application of control theory to the problems associated with precisely following a planned trajectory.  Another area of significant importance to me is teaching.  This includes discussing my research and other interests with students in a regular classroom setting as well as lecturing to more general audiences.  I am currently the author or co-author of more than 40 publications, including papers in the fields of oceanographic instrumentation, current measurement, biogeochemical sampling, and underwater vehicles.

I have more than thirty years of practical experience and a broad range of skills and knowledge to apply to engineering challenges.  A partial list of these talents includes analog and digital electronic design and fabrication, mechanical design and fabrication, structural mechanics and the behavior of materials, and hydrodynamics, particularly boundary layer flows and the interactions of fluids and structures.  I regularly write and work with assembly and higher level (e.g., C, Matlab) languages for microprocessor control, data collection, data analysis, numerical calculations, and simulations.  I am an experienced professional diver, certified for operations on UNOLS research vessels.  I depend on that broad base of knowledge and skills in my work because I feel that it is important to integrate rather than compartmentalize the instrument design process.  A better sensor results when the electrical and mechanical portions of an instrument are designed from the beginning to complement each other.  This approach is particularly important when considering the interaction of the sensor with the environment.  For example, experience in hydrodynamics allows me to characterize the flow around the structure of a current sensor and improve the accuracy of the measurement." - Archie T. Morrison III, PhD.


B. A., Harvard University, cum laude, 1981
Engineering and Applied Science / Electrical Engineering
Yale University, Special Student in Mathematics, 1986-1987
M. S., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1994
Ocean Engineering
O.E., Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1994
Oceanographic Engineering
Thesis (for dual degree): System Identification and State Reconstruction for Autonomous Navigation of an Underwater Vehicle in an Acoustic Net
Ph. D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1997
Oceanographic Engineering
Dissertation: Development of the BASS Rake Acoustic Current Sensor: Measuring Velocity in the Continental Shelf Wave Bottom Boundary Layer

Research and Professional Interests:

Instrument design and development for oceanographic research and environmental monitoring
Velocity and sediment concentration measurement in continental shelf bottom boundary layers
System engineering and design, including electronic, software, mechanical and power design
Hydrodynamics and control theory as applied to underwater vehicles
Teaching and public outreach

Honors and Professional Activities:

Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) since 1995
Senior Member of IEEE since 2005
Member of the IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society (OES) since 1995
IEEE / OES Administrative Committee 2000 to Present
IEEE / OES Current Measurement Technology Committee (CMTC)
Finance Chair 2001 to 2005
IEEE / OES Webmaster 2001 to 2009
IEEE / OES / MTS OCEANS Webmaster 2003 to Present
IEEE / OES Constitution and Bylaws Committee 2004 to 2005
IEEE / OES Distinguished Service Award 2008
IEEE / OES Vice President of Conference Operations 2011 to Present
Massachusetts Informal Educator of the Year 2000, Massachusetts Marine Educators


Emergency foster parents since 2000, 2007 Regional Hotline Foster Parents of the Year

Other Interests: Astronomy and Cosmology, Scuba Diving, Photography, Underwater Archaeology, History, Evolution, Early and Oral Literatures