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Award Abstract #0433409

A Phased Engineering Program to Build a New 6500-M Research Submersible for the U.S. Scientific Community: The New Alvin

Division Of Ocean Sciences
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Initial Amendment Date: August 4, 2004
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Latest Amendment Date: August 1, 2013
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Award Number: 0433409
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Award Instrument: Cooperative Agreement
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Program Manager: Brian Midson
OCE Division Of Ocean Sciences
GEO Directorate For Geosciences
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Start Date: August 1, 2004
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End Date: July 31, 2014 (Estimated)
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Awarded Amount to Date: $35,986,694.00
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Investigator(s): Susan Humphris shumphris@whoi.edu (Principal Investigator)
Robert Detrick (Former Principal Investigator)
Barrie Walden (Former Principal Investigator)
Robert Detrick (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
Robert Brown (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
Dudley Foster (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
Daniel Fornari (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
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Sponsor: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
WOODS HOLE, MA 02543-1041 (508)289-3542
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Program Reference Code(s): 0000, OTHR
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Program Element Code(s): 1650, 5412, 7595


Principal Investigator: Barrie Walden

Institution: WHOI

Proposal #: 0433409

WHOI proposes to design and build a new, state-of-the-art 6500 meter deep submergence research human occupied vehicle (HOV) for the U.S. oceanographic community to replace the DSV Alvin. By providing the capability to routinely access the deep seafloor and conduct observational, sampling and mapping studies, DSV Alvin has, over the past four decades, helped to revolutionize our understanding of seafloor geologic processes and benthic ecosystems, making important discoveries about the biological, chemical and geological processes that shape our planet.

The proposed HOV replacement will be a more robust and technologically advanced deep submergence vehicle, and will still be capable of operating off of the R/V Atlantis with only minor ship modifications. Proposed scientific elements of the design include many cutting edge technologies, such as a variable ballast system to allow for midwater column research, use of new battery systems to increase bottom time and depth capability to reach 95 per cent of the ocean bottom. Implementation of these unique technologies will allow science users enhanced capabilities and expand the suite of oceanographic disciplines that will be able to use a deep submersible for research.



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Susan E. Humphris. "Progress Towards an Improved Submersible for the U.S. Science Community," UNOLS Newsletter, v.26, 2010, p. 5.

Humphris, S.E.; German, C.R.; Bowen, A.. "A major upgrade for the U.S. deep submergence vehicle, Alvin," EOS Transactions, v.90(52), 2010.

German, C.R., Fornari, D.J., Fryer, P., Girguis, P., Humphris, S.E., Kelley, D.S., Tivey, M.A., Van Dover, C.L. and Von Damm, K.,. "Being there and getting back again: Half a century of deep ocean research and discovery with the human-occupied vehicle ?Alvin?.," Invited Paper, EOS, Trans. Amer. Geophys. Union,, 2012, p. 06.

Monastersky, R.. "Deep-sea Research: Dive Master," Nature - http://www.nature.com/news/deep-sea-research-dive-master-1.11393, v.489, 2012, p. 194-196.

Humphris., S.. "Deep-sea research: Dive master - a Comment (online)," Nature, 2012, p. Online.

Humphris, SE., German, CR. and Hickey, J.P.. "Fifty years of deep ocean exploration with the DSV Alvin," EOS, 2014, p. 181.


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