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About the Client
The Scripps Institution of Oceanography's (SIO) mission is to seek, teach, and communicate scientific understanding of the oceans, atmosphere, Earth, and other planets for the benefit of society and the environment. Scripps Ship Operations & Marine Technical Support manages SIO's fleet of academic research vessels, one of the largest in the world. These vessels play a critical role in exploring the planet and conducting important research in all the world’s oceans.
The SIO ships website aims to simplify the educational research, planning and tracking associated with marine research via cruise ships and crew members. Historically, chief scientists needed to contact various admins and technicians individually. Tracking a cruise’s progression was difficult because of the multiple channels and personnel involved in this process. It was also a challenge to maintain the right level of security and clearance for legal documents as this information was being shared via email during the planning stages. Therefore, SIO needed a ships website to accomplish the following research fundamentals:
- Managing Teams
- Transparent Documentation and Releases
- Efficient Communication via the Website
- Assigning Resources & Equipment
- Planning & Tracking Events
- Managing Research Data
Drupal has a very flexible and scalable modular system and by leveraging the contributed modules of Drupal the SIO ships site simplified the cruise planning and tracking process while also allowing all relevant personnel to stay up-to-date with cruise activity.
The primary requirements of the site were as follows:
- A robust and scalable web application
- User-friendly interface
- User management of researchers, administrators, facilitators and team members
- Administration & tracking of planning materials (i.e. members, legal forms, plans and equipment requests)
- Consistent architecture to their other Drupal sites for site management ease
- Usability within low bandwidth environments such as research vessels
- Extensive security and strict permissions of content
- Digitalization of the entire paper process for ease of tracking, planning and management
Given the power and flexibility of Drupal’s module system, the SIO website has become a robust and scalable web application. The site has simplified SIO’s needs to provide an efficient higher educational research cruise that minimizes the stress and time associated with organizing paperwork, equipment and personnel. The value brought to SIO has been the piece of mind knowing they can regain focus on what they do best, accomplishing a successful informative research mission.