Sharks Sighted At The Chattanooga Airport

Travelers Not Only Ones Enjoying Live Views Of Tennessee Aquarium’s Secret Reef

Thursday, June 8, 2017 - by Thom Benson
Sharks and other sea creatures in the Tennessee Aquarium’s Secret Reef exhibit can be viewed live at the Chattanooga Airport
Sharks and other sea creatures in the Tennessee Aquarium’s Secret Reef exhibit can be viewed live at the Chattanooga Airport

Some new creatures are thrilling travelers passing through the Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport. Whether they’re arriving or departing, visitors now can watch a live video feed of toothy Sand Tiger and Sandbar Sharks, majestic Green Sea Turtles, gliding Stingrays and a swarming profusion of colorful reef fish navigating the Tennessee Aquarium’s massive Secret Reef exhibit. 

“It’s very relaxing,” said one visitor, who chose to kick back between flights in one of the rocking chairs facing the screen. “I could watch this all day.” 

This digital window into the Aquarium’s teeming tank is displayed on a sprawling 98-inch Planar UltraRes screen located beneath the airport’s rotunda. When the feed debuted last March, Chattanooga became the first city in the nation to present live 4K content delivered via a municipal gigabit network. 

Nokia, the Chattanooga Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Chattanooga Airport, the Tennessee Aquarium, and The Enterprise Center collaborated on the project, which since has accomplished far more than merely demonstrating the blazing speed of EPB fiber optic network to travelers. 

Now, schools are joining travelers as beneficiaries of this technological achievement. The Enterprise Center has been working with EPB and the Public Education Foundation to stream live 4K video from the Aquarium to some Hamilton County classrooms. 

Geoff Millener, PEF’s Innovation and Technology Programs manager, says the video feed provides a number of educational benefits. Using the feed to support their lessons has helped convince fourth graders in Masey Stubblefield’s class at Red Bank Elementary that science is actually pretty JAW-some. 

“We’ve tried to integrate the feeds as a continuous presence, rather than something to be trotted out for specific projects,” Mr. Millener says. “In some ways, they’re the best class pets you could imagine – as students study animal adaptations, habitats and the like, it gives Mrs. Stubblefield an opportunity to have them observe and report on a reef full of subjects. We think this really simple use (always having a vibrant, engaging example available – and not a video, but live stream) has had a huge impact, both in terms of the students’ abilities to question, observe and reach conclusions, as well as to how gigabit technology can integrate seamlessly into the classroom experience.” 

Scientific research has shown that visiting an Aquarium has therapeutic benefits that include lowering blood pressure and improving mood. Viewing these fascinating animals — live and in ultra-high resolution — may be the next best thing to seeing them in person, whether you’re flying across the country or a young person dealing with a stressful situation. 

“I happened to be at Red Bank Elementary one day as their assistant principal brought in a student who had been having a difficult day,” Mr. Millener says. “He calmed down in the presence of the Aquarium’s display and started talking with me about what was troubling him. 

“These tangential uses of the Aquarium’s live video stream are especially interesting to me. I think they speak to the innovation born of technologists and teachers working side by side.” 

View the Tennessee Aquarium Secret Reef webcam online: http://www.tnaqua.org/animals-exhibits/secret-reef-cam/

Sharks and other sea creatures in the Tennessee Aquarium’s Secret Reef exhibit can be viewed live at the Chattanooga Airport
Sharks and other sea creatures in the Tennessee Aquarium’s Secret Reef exhibit can be viewed live at the Chattanooga Airport


WildCast Now Available On Franklin County Radio Station

Tennessee WildCast is now available on its first radio station, WZYX, The Eagle Radio in Cowan. The program will air on Saturday mornings beginning at 6:05. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has been producing the where primarily the featured guests are the agency’s field and office staff. While the podcast is setup with a radio-style format, a television monitor has been ... (click for more)

Hunt Seasons To Be Set At May TFWC Meeting

The Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission will set the 2018-19 and 2019-20 hunting and trapping seasons at its May 17-18 meeting. The meeting will be held at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s Ray Bell Region II Building. Thursday’s committee meetings will begin at 1 p.m. The regular commission meeting starts at 9 a.m., Friday. TWRA staff presented its recommendations ... (click for more)

Man And Woman Killed In Sunday Morning Shooting At Hixson Gas Station

A man and a woman were killed in a Sunday morning shooting at a gas station in Hixson. The shooting was shortly after 10 a.m. at a Shell station at Hixson Pike and Brookaire. The woman was dead at the scene. The man was rushed to a hospital, but died there. (click for more)

$2,060,705 Tennessee Cash Jackpot Won In South Pittsburg Friday Night

A Tennessee Cash player in South Pittsburg won a near-record jackpot of $2,060,705 on  Friday  night. A Knoxville Powerball player won $50,000  Saturday  night by matching four of the five white numbers drawn plus the red Powerball. No information is available about the winners until the prizes are claimed. The  $315.3 million ... (click for more)

Brown V. Board (1954) 64 Years Late: Our Schools At A Crossroads

May 17, 1954 is a date forever etched upon the annals of American history because on that pivotal day the Supreme Court would affirm in the decision of Brown v. Board (1954). “We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of ‘separate but equal’ has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.” This ruling overturned the infamous Plessy v. Ferguson ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Same Family Tree

When it was learned the UnifiEd Foundation was a left-wing crowd of political organizers rather than a group with the sole intent of bettering public education in Hamilton County, several other liberal groups fell under scrutiny and it is uncanny how many of the same few people are intertwined in a county of 360,000 people. Or, as one critic succinctly said, “They are all from ... (click for more)