Start date:
Early October 2009
End date:
Mid December 2009
New Harbor, White Island
Principle Investigator:
Stacy Kim
San Jose State University
In marine habitats worldwide, the zone between scuba-diving depths (to 40 meters) and surge-free depths (below 200 meters) is poorly studied. Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) are often limited to deeper depths by wave surge that hampers the ability to maintain a fixed station. Under ice-covered seas, wave motion ranges from minimal to nonexistent. Sea ice also provides a stable platform from which to deploy and operate the ROV. ROVs previously needed a one-meter-diameter ice hole, requiring substantial logistical support. This project will deploy a ROV that fits through a 15-centimeter hole drilled with a hand-held power head, providing access to sites previously inaccessible to divers or standard ROVs. Using the ROV, researchers hope to map and measure historical, submerged structures; survey and photograph two deep, benthic communities; and to conduct general sonar mapping.