Jules Jaffe is a research oceanographer with the Marine Physical Laboratory at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego.

His research interests are broadly concerned with the use of new technology for observing oceanic phenomena and the development of inverse techniques for their interpretation. His research has focused primarily on ocean ecology; he has also worked in biomedical applications. In the realm of ocean ecology, several acoustic systems invented by Jaffe resulted in the first ever behavioral observations of zooplankton in situ. In addition, the small-scale distribution of phytoplankton, as mapped via an autonomously deployed imaging fluorometer, have provided unprecedented views of oceanic biota.  A new generation of miniature, sensor-equipped drifters that can acoustically network is also being considered in order to gain insights into coastal circulation and larval transport.  Most recently, Jaffe is developing underwater microscopes for in-situ characterization of micro and macro plankton.

The National Science Foundation, the Office of Naval Research, California Sea Grant, the U.S. Army Breast Cancer Research Program, and the Seaver Institute of Los Angeles, and the W. M. F. Keck Founcation of Los Angeles  have supported his research.

Born in Merrick, New York, Jaffe graduated cum laude from State University of New York, Buffalo, with a bachelor’s degree in physics. He attended the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he received a master’s degree in biomedical information science, and the University of California, Berkeley, where he received a doctorate in biophysics.

Following graduation, Jaffe was a software engineer at Diasonics, Inc., in Milpitas, Calif., and, concurrently, a postdoctoral fellow at the UC Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Subsequently, he was a consultant to KLA Instruments Inc., in Santa Clara, Calif.

He joined the science staff at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in 1984. While at Woods Hole, he held a research fellowship from the Pew Memorial Foundation.

Jaffe joined SIO in 1988 as a research scientist in the Marine Physical Lab.  He is a fellow of the Acoustical Society of America and was also a Visiting Miller Professor at U. C. Berkeley.  He lectures widely to public audiences on in-situ methods and also his previous involvement with the finding of the Titanic in 1985.

Last updated April 2013