Chuanmin Hu


Chuanmin Hu, Ph.D. is Professor of optical oceanography in the College of Marine Science, who also directs the Optical Oceanography Lab. His research focuses on studying marine algal blooms (e.g., red tides), oil spills, and coastal water quality changes using field, laboratory, and remote sensing techniques.  His discovery of the Great Atlantic Sargassum Belt—a biomass of brown seaweed that extends from the west coast of Africa to the Gulf of Mexico—made Guinness World Records and was selected by Discover magazine as one of the top 50 discoveries in 2019. With more than 300 papers published, Dr. Hu has made pioneering developments in cutting-edge remote sensing algorithms and data products. His research has led to the establishment of a Virtual Antenna System to generate and distribute customized data products in near real-time, from which unique coastal observing systems have been developed to address specific monitoring and research needs. The Virtual Buoy System, Integrated Redtide Information System, and Sargassum Watch System developed by the Hu lab have served more than 60 countries and numerous user groups. Dr. Hu is an elected member of the Academy of Science, Engineering and Medicine of Florida; has received the Gulf Guardian Award from the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor Award from the University of South Florida, among other honors. He earned his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Miami (FL) and his B.S. from the University of Science and Technology (China).  

Earned Awards