Current projects


Past projects




ROV enhancements

Drillsled adaptation to Tiburon
Lead Scientist: Debra Stakes
Lead Engineer: Mark Chaffey
Project Manager: Karen Salamy

Oceanic crust is created at mid-ocean ridges by a complex series of melting and crystallization events that each leave their geochemical signature in the major, trace or isotopic composition of the minerals that comprise the crustal rocks. There has been little progress in actually mapping exposures of lower oceanic crust due in part to the limitations of existing submersibles and the inability to systematically collect samples from outcrops to determine their lithology.

The MBARI Rock Coring system is the only proven technique by which plutonic rocks can be systematically sampled to provide high-resolution lithostratigraphic coverage and has been successfully deployed from ALVIN, Ventana and ROPOS.

This project is to adapt the MBARI drillsled to Tiburon which takes advantage of Tiburonís superior station-keeping qualities, greater depth capabilities and wider geographical coverage compared to Ventana. As a standard Tiburon toolsled it will become another sampling arrow in the quiver of tools available to researchers during a cruise with the "quick connect" interface design allowing it to be quickly installed for individual dives. 

In the process of modifying the drillsled system for Tiburon every effort will be made to design the system to be compatible with other similar ROV systems such as VICTOR, operated by the French research institute for exploitation of the sea (IFREMER).