Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Juan de Fuca Ridge Cruise
July 20 - August 1, 2000


Multiple-Barrel Rock Coring Sled
On June 21, 2000 the team for the Tiburon Rock Coring sled Adaption project completed a successful demonstration of the refurbished and upgraded MBARI multiple coring system (MCS). The MCS, which has been operating for several years on ROV Ventana, has now been adapted to a new toolsled for ROV Tiburon. In the changeover, major upgrades were incorporated into the system—a new drill motor and water swivel, and a graphical user interface. The challenge was to assemble (in a six month time frame) old and new elements into a coring sled that would perform as good as or better than the original Ventana coring sled. That challenge has been met by the combined efforts of the original project team, Support Engineering, TSD (machinists and technicians), and DMO (pilots, technicians, and ship’s crew).

Project manager, Karen Salamy, wrote the following description of the sea trial and results:
"Testing occurred at the Duo Seismo waypoint in the Southern Meander of Monterey Canyon during which all main functions of the coring sled operated within their designed ranges. The vehicle was able to maintain one steady position during the coring operations allowing for two granite cores to be taken. Moreover, the second of these two cores was taken in roughly the same amount of time (and length) as previous coring achieved by Ventana. The success of these tests has resulted in the incorporation of the Tiburon coring sled on MBARI science dives at Juan de Fuca during July and August of this year."

Here are a few pictures, taken as the team finished the coring sled and delivered it to DMO.

The (almost) finished coring sled awaits the next operation.

Interns, Katie Farnsworth, Greg Moretti, and Jeff Johnson discuss details with Doug Au.

Karen Salamy and Doug Au make last-minute adjustments.

Larry Bird adds one more piece.

The coring mechanism is tested on land before being attached to ROV Tiburon for sea trials.

Jon Erickson moves the coring sled to the dock.

Herb Lundin tightens a few more bolts.

Vern Billington lowers the coring sled into the R/V Western Flyer moonpool—verrrry carefully.

ROV pilots and R/V Western Flyer crew guide ROV Tiburon onto the new sled.

DMO Director Steve Etchemendy gets down for a closer look.

ROV Tiburon and the new sled are ready.

The first successful core proves that it all works!

Photos by Doug Au, Judy Donaldson, and Greg Moretti
All images ©MBARI 2000