During the second half, Northeastern University worked on several science projects and the aquanauts collected DNA from 12 species of sponges to send to the Ocean Genome Legacy, a nonprofit with a mission to explore, preserve and protect the genetic biodiversity of the oceans.

And aquanaut Grace Young, who just graduated from MIT, used the pioneering Edgertronic high-speed video camera for the first time under water to capture never-before-seen slow-motion images of a manta shrimp eating a goby and a Christmas tree worm retreating into its shell.

“We were shooting at like 2,000 frames per second, so it was really special what we could see,” Young said.

In footage of corals trying to eat plankton as it flowed by, Young said she found herself “rooting for the plankton.”