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    HomeWorldCan Hybrid Super Reefs Defend Military Bases?

    Can Hybrid Super Reefs Defend Military Bases?

    Can Hybrid Super Reefs Defend Military Bases?

    The U.S.  has an idea to save its seaside bases from some of their most relentless foes: flooding, erosion and storm surge.

    The Defense Department spends billions of dollars to repair hurricane- and flood-related damage to its bases; in 2018, a particularly damaging series of storms caused $9 billion worth of destruction. Scientists — and military planners — expect that toll to grow as rising sea levels make storm surge and beach erosion worse.

    To protect coastal bases, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency () has enlisted corals, oysters and three international teams of scientists led by investigators at the University of , the University of Hawaii and Rutgers University. The researchers are developing what they call “hybrid reefs,” which combine concrete structures with living coral reefs and oyster beds to break up damaging waves.

    One day, the Defense Department hopes to deploy these super resilient reefs off the coast of military bases to reduce the amount of damage they take when they're pummeled by waves.

    “A lot of people are surprised that the [Defense Department] is doing this, but there are more than 1,700 military installations that are on coasts worldwide, and when they're impacted by storms it causes billions of dollars of damage,” said Catherine Campbell, the DARPA program manager in charge of the project, “so we're looking for ways that we can…

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