Tracking Unexploded Munitions
Residents of coastal North Carolina woke on Sept. 25 to what you might call an explosive surprise: Hurricane Maria, passing in the night, had churned up two ancient naval munitions from beneath the waves and flung them onto nearby beaches. Crusted with mud, seaweed, and barnacles, the unexploded devices were thought to date from World War II.
Though certainly startling for North Carolina beachgoers, the reappearance of ordnance is actually not so unusual; United States coastlines are riddled with unexploded ordnance, or UXO, left offshore by naval and air force exercises in the 1940s and 1950s. Peter Traykovski, a scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, wants to know not only where this ordnance is, but where it might go next.
Read more over at WHOI's Oceanus Magazine.