Legend has it that the Greek mathematician Archimedes ran naked in the streets shouting "Eureka!" when, in his bath, he came up with a way to measure the purity of gold. While most modern scientists keep their clothes on, their enthusiasm for discovery remains unabated. "It's exploding like an egg!" exclaims William Chadwick Jr. of Oregon State University as he watches the first-ever video of an erupting underwater volcano, NW Rota-1. Chadwick, along with a team from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (co-sponsors of the new Ocean Hall), used a remote camera to record this 2006 event.
The hagfish is a slime-emitting ocean-dweller that's remained unchanged for 300 million years--and it shows. It has a skull (but no spine), velvet smooth skin, and a terrifying pit of a mouth that's lined with rows of razor-sharp teeth.