The Pacific Oceanological Institute (POI) was established in 1973 in the Far Eastern Scientific Center of the USSR Academy of Sciences based on the Pacific Branch of P.P Shirshov Oceanology Institute which had existed in Vladivostok since the early 60’s. Deputy Director of the Oceanology Institute Prof. E. Mikhaltsev and Prof. N.P. Vasilkovsky played a great role in the Institute’s establishment.
In 1974, Dr. Viktor Ilyichev became the Director of the Institute and led the Institute for 20 years. The Institute developed a variety of scientific areas and schools of thought. The following scientists made great contributions to their development: Academician V.I. Il'ichev, Doctor of Sciences: N.P. Vasilkovsky, N.P. Bulgakov, M.F. Staschuk, U.Kh. Kopvillem, V.F. Kozlov, etc. In the following years, Doctors of Sciences, such as K.T. Bogdanov, V.V. Anikiev, B.I. Vasil'ev, L.M.Gramm-Osipov, A.V. Alekseev, R.G. Kulinich, V.N. Soifer, L.M. Mitnick, Y.N. Morgunov played important roles in the research area development.
From 1995 to 2015, the Institute’s Director was Academician Viktor A. Akulichev, a leading expert in ocean acoustics.
In 2015, Vyacheslav B. Lobanov, PhD, was elected as the Director of the Institute.
The Institute is the largest research institution in the Far Eastern Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences. It comprises 31 research units equipped with modern scale devices, a library holding about 56,000 items, a reading room and circulation division (Head: Bunina Z.I).
The major research fields of POI include basic investigations in physical oceanography: hydrology, climatology, hydrodynamics, hydrophysics in Pacific and Arctic regions, dynamics of non-linear systems, and satellite studies of the physical phenomena and the ocean and atmosphere interaction processes. Comprehensive experimental and theoretical research of the ocean acoustic fields is carried out to detect and study multiscale natural and artificial inhomogeneity in marine environment.
Much attention is paid to remote acoustic methods for studying various characteristics of the water column. Investigation of physical processes in marine environment and adjacent geospheres is performed through the application of advanced laser-interferometric techniques. The priority research field is development of technical tools for acoustic tomography of the sea water dynamics and structure on the continental shelf and in the deep sea.
Ocean geochemistry and ecology are represented by integrated biogeochemical and thermodynamic research aimed at assessment of water ecosystem state and anthropogenic effect on sea and medium. The researchers study biochemical mechanisms of the marine organisms reaction to the environment pollution.
The marine geology and geophysics field is represented by research of tectonics, seismology, gravimetry, and paleooceanography in the Pacific and marginal seas. Much attention is paid to gas geochemistry and marine mineralogy as a potential source of natural resources in the Far-Eastern region and in the Arctic seas