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College of Arts & Sciences
Baruch Institute

Baruch Marine Field Lab, Hobcaw Barony, Georgetown

Baruch Marine Field Laboratory


Researchers from diverse disciplines within USC and from other institutions work out of the field laboratory; on an annual basis >100 scientists from >20 universities and agencies (including USC). The marsh-side Marine Field Laboratory complex consists of a large building for research and education activities, two seawater buildings, outdoor mesocosms, boardwalks and piers, a maintenance shop, and boat sheds.

The main laboratory building (21,645 sq ft) comprises research laboratories, a computer center, seminar room, conference-dining room, archived-sample room, classroom, site library, teaching lab, walk-in refrigerators and freezers, large screened work areas, and technical and administrative support offices.  Tapped seawater is available in the research laboratories.  Internet and a video teleconferencing system provide for interaction with researchers in Columbia or other locations and access additional research resources. Analytical equipment includes inorganic and carbon analyzers, spectrophometers, high quality light microscopes, and a scintillation counter. Ground-based LIDAR, infrared and multispectral cameras, kite-balloon, or other field-based equipmentare also available.  A wing of the main building houses the North Inlet-Winyah Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve which provides an additional classrooms, teaching laboratories, computer labs, and offices in support of educational programming and research.

The seawater buildings (3,078 sq ft) are equipped for field-oriented research requiring a large volume of tapped seawater and analytical equipment. The seawater system provides up to 500 gpm of natural tidal creek water and 50 gpm of 50 micron filtered water. 

For manipulative experimental research in intertidal habitats, large replicated mesocosms are available.

The maintenance shop provides vehicle and boat support and offers services to assist in research projects.

Access to the local coastal habitats is via piers, floating docks, boat ramps.   A marsh boardwalk and a laboratory observation deck provide additional access.

Resources include a laboratory space, boats, vehicles, lodging, field equipment, expendable supplies, and voucher specimens.  In addition, staff assistance, boat training certification, habitat expertise, data and water chemistry lab services, and guided field experiences may be arranged.  See the Visitors link for information on reservations and any applicable charges.