Wiring the Abyss 2013 brings you highlights from research and maintenance operations on the year’s major expeditions to our VENUS and NEPTUNE ocean observatories in the coastal waters of southern British Columbia.
October 20 to October 27: Ocean Networks Canada will be conducting the last scheduled maintenance expedition of the 2013 calendar year. This cruise will focus on maintaining a majority of the VENUS observatory installations from the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Vector using the CanPac Diver’s ROV Oceanic Explorer. The expedition’s objectives are to:
Sept 6 to Sept 18/Leg 2: R/V Falkor continues to focus on hypoxia in areas of the Pacific continental shelf and coastal waters off southern Vancouver Island.
Aug 10 to Aug 31/Leg 1: Visiting from Florida, the Schmidt Ocean Institute’s R/V Falkor hosts scientists studying low oxygen water intrusions at VENUS sites in the Salish Sea.
June 9 to June 26: From Victoria, the R/V Thompson heads out to deeper waters, with stops at Bullseye Vent (ODP 889), Cascadia Basin (ODP 1027) and the Endeavour segment of the Juan de Fuca mid-ocean ridge
May 20 to May 29: Leaving from Victoria BC, the IODP research drilling vessel JOIDES Resolution hosts visiting scientist Dr. Kate Moran at two sites along the 800 km NEPTUNE observatory network.
May 9 to May 28/Leg 2: CCGS Tully transits between NEPTUNE’s Folger and Barkley Canyon locations off the west coast of Vancouver Island.
April 29 to May 8/Leg 1: From Sidney, BC, we're off on the Canadian Coast Guard Ship (CCGS) John P. Tully to VENUS sites in the Strait of Georgia and Saanich Inlet
During the expeditions, intermittent instrument outages and data gaps will occur as we recover and service instrumentation. Data services on the VENUS and NEPTUNE Canada websites may also be delayed by ongoing operations at sea.
The 274-foot R/V Thomas G. Thompson is a global class research ship, and part of the UNOLS fleet. Owned by the Office of Naval Research, the Thompson is operated by the University of Washington's School of Oceanography. In addition to the ship's 22-member crew, the Thompson has room for an additional 36 scientists and 2 marine technicians.
Like a self-contained small city, the Thompson carries a 45+ day food supply and uses desalinators to produce 8,000 gallons of fresh water each day. Generators produce enough power to run the ship and provide lighting and power for laboratories, communications and navigation equipment. The ship uses the Global Positioning System (GPS) integrated with dynamic positioning (DP) to hold station within 1-2 meters.
R/V Falkor is a 82.9 m (272 ft) LOA ship originally built in 1981 in Lübeck, Germany as a fishery protection vessel.
The ship went through an extensive refit from 2009 to early 2012, converting the ship to an oceanographic research vessel. Cruising range and endurance are estimated at 8,000 nautical miles and 28 days of steaming (fuel-limited) at a cruising speed of 12 knots.
JOIDES stands for “Joint Oceanographic Institutions for Deep Earth Sampling,” an organization that merged in 2007 with the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, which today runs the vessel in partnership with Texas A&M University and Lamont-Dougherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University. The National Science Foundation provides funding.
The JR also offers education programs including “Educator at Sea” and “School of Rock.” It can hold 130 people, half of whom are crew. The deepest hole it has drilled is about 2110m (or 1.3 miles) into the earth. Operating since 1985, the JR roams the world’s oceans. It has no home port.
The 143m (470 feet) long JOIDES Resolution is a seagoing research vessel that drills core samples and collects measurements from under the ocean, giving scientists a glimpse into Earth’s development.