Explore The Great Barrier Reef From Your Desk With Google Street View

great barrier reef While Google Street View usually sticks to helping you explore land, users can now navigate Australia‘s Great Barrier Reef, right from their desks. Just launched, Google makes use of an innovative underwater camera that can record 360-degree images of the marine park.

The project is part of the Catlin Seaview Survey, which was launched today at Monterey, California. For the next three years, scientists will collect visual information on the world’s reefs to be shared on Google Maps, allowing people all over the world to dive without leaving home.

In a story at news.com.au, project founder and director Richard Vevers explains, “99.95 per cent of people can’t scuba dive, it allows so many people to access the oceans for the very first time.”

While at the moment only three sections have been mapped, by December it is expected there will be 20. Additionally, diving robots will be used to examine never before seen areas 328 feet below the surface. Along with broadening scopes of the world, scientists hope to discover new species and track changes in the reef related to climate change.

Next year, the project will expand to map reefs in Hawaii and the Philippines.