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Support of Gulf of Mexico Hydrate Research Consortium: Activities to Support Establishment of a Sea Floor Monitoring Station Project. Progress Report: June-November 2003

Description: A Consortium, designed to assemble leaders in gas hydrates research, has been established at the University of Mississippi's Center for Marine Resources and Environmental Technology, CMRET. The primary objective of the group is to design and emplace a remote monitoring station on the sea floor in the northern Gulf of Mexico by the year 2005, in an area where gas hydrates are known to be present at, or just below, the sea floor. This mission necessitates assembling a station that will monitor physical and chemical parameters of the sea water and sea floor sediments on a more-or-less continuous basis over an extended period of time. Development of the station allows for the possibility of expanding its capabilities to include biological monitoring, as a means of assessing environmental health. Establishment of the Consortium has succeeded in fulfilling the critical need to coordinate activities, avoid redundancies and communicate effectively among researchers in this relatively new research arena. Complementary expertise, both scientific and technical, has been assembled to innovate research methods and construct necessary instrumentation. A year into the life of this cooperative agreement, we note the following achievements: (1) Progress on the vertical line array (VLA) of sensors: (A) Software and hardware upgrades to the data logger for the prototype vertical line array, including enhanced programmable gains, increased sampling rates, improved surface communications, (B) Cabling upgrade to allow installation of positioning sensors, (C) Adaptation of SDI's Angulate program to use acoustic slant ranges and DGPS data to compute and map the bottom location of the vertical array, (D) Progress in T''0'' delay and timing issues for improved control in data recording, (E) Successful deployment and recovery of the VLA twice during an October, 2003 cruise, once in 830m water, once in 1305m water, (F) Data collection and recovery from the DATS data …
Date: August 1, 2005
Creator: Higley, Paul; Woolsey, J. Robert; Goodman, Ralph; Asper, Vernon; Mizaikoff, Boris & Davis, Angela
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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