Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
 2005 projects
Benthic processes

Keck project: Linkages between seismic and microbial events

Project Manager: Paul McGill, Chris Scholin
Lead Scientist: Chris Scholin
Lead Engineer: Gene Massion/Paul McGill

The goal of the Keck project is to constrain the linkages between earthquakes, fluid flow and chemistry, and microbial response across the northern Juan de Fuca plate. The northern boundaries of the Juan de Fuca plate are the focus of the effort for three reasons: 1) They are spatially condensed, well-defined examples of a ridge, a transform fault, and a subduction complex; 2) They are close to major ports; 3) The entire experiment will be central to the Phase I installation of NEPTUNE (by Canada).

Seismometer work

The Endeavour Segment of the Juan de Fuca Ridge has seven corehole short-period seismometers and one buried broadband seismometer system in place, along with various hydrothermal sensors. The full seismic network is now in place and the development phase of the MBARI seismometers for the Keck project is largely complete. In 2005 the objectives for seismology are:

  1. Turn around all the seismometers using ROV Jason II.
  2. Initiate a one-year program of technology transfer to train personnel from the University of Washington and NEPTUNE Canada in the operation and maintenance of the seismometers.

The intention is to continue to operate these networks in autonomous mode (with annual servicing) until they can be connected to the regional cabled observatory (NEPTUNE) in 2007-8. 

D-ESP (deep ESP) development

Chris Scholin will coordinate scientific involvement in the Keck effort and the development of the D-ESP (along with the second-generation ESP). The primary objectives of the Keck D-ESP project are to build a pressure housing and a two-liter sample collection module, suitable for deploying the 2G ESP up to 4000 meters deep.

Our intent is to continue to develop, integrate, and analyze the experimental protocols and data accumulated in the prototype Keck (MBARI/University of Washington) experiment to ensure that a fully-framed and challenging next-generation suite of experiments can be conducted when the RCO (Regional Cabled Observatory) in the northeast Pacific becomes operational.

Last updated: Feb. 05, 2009