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National Geographic RPV designer to speak at Great Lakes Seaway Trail 'Blue Byway' event

by jmaloni

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Tue, Sep 17th 2013 07:00 am

The designer, builder and pilot of the remotely piloted vehicle used by the National Geographic Society to make a documentary film on the War of 1812 shipwrecks of the Hamilton and Scourge, will speak at the Great Lakes Seaway Trail "Blue Byway" event on Saturday, Oct. 5, at SUNY Oswego.

Christopher Nicholson, president of Deep Sea Systems International (Cataumet, Mass.), provided his technical and engineering expertise to the filming of the two historic schooners sank in Lake Ontario in 1812. For more than 20 years, Nicholson contracted with the National Geographic Society on expeditions worldwide and received NGS research grants to develop specialized underwater vehicles, imaging systems and HDTV cameras.

The WWII battleship Arizona, the H.M.S. Breadalbane, and famed freighter Edmund Fitzgerald are among the other historic shipwrecks Nicholson has helped explorers to document. His underwater engineering skills were also applied to the Hollywood production of "Titanic."

Nicholson presents Flying Fish awards to young inventors and artists, helps send students to the International Science and Engineering Fair, and supports student science fairs in the Yarmouth, Mass., area.

Nicholson is on the 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Great Lakes Seaway Trail "Blue Byway" program, co-sponsored by the Great Lakes Seaway Trail and New York Sea Grant, with National Weather Service forecaster and forensic meteorologist Robert Hamilton and New York Sea Grant coastal recreation and tourism specialist Dave White.

Presentation of two-tank diving destinations are also on the agenda of the Oct. 5 Great Lakes Seaway Trail "Blue Byway" seminar, which is part of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail Underwater Series of maritime heritage and recreation programs.

Preregistration by Oct. 1 is $10 at www.seawaytrail.com/dive; late registration and admission at the door is $15, as space allows. For more information, call 315-646-1000, ext. 203.

The Great Lakes Seaway Trail is a 518-mile National Scenic Byway that offers unique land and water travel opportunities along Lake Erie, the Niagara River, Lake Ontario, and the St. Lawrence River. Learn more at www.seawaytrail.com.

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