Starting Work at Axial Volcano

Thursday, July 04, 2013
ROPOS Team Dons Survival Suits
Ropos Launch for Dive 1592

ROPOS begins dive 1592 at the summit of Axial Seamount. Photo by Mitch Elend.

ROPOS Control Center

ROPOS pilots guide the robotic vehicle as it enters the water above Axial Volcano.

After leaving port the morning of July 2, the R/V Thompson steamed ~ 36 hours to Axial Seamount, over 300 miles offshore.  During this transit, the ROPOS crew, and scientists and engineers finished preparations for the first dive and also took in some quiet down time after the busy weeks of preparation prior to the cruise. Bodies became adjusted to the rhythm of the ship, and to standing with legs far apart to maintain balance on a gently rocking ship. Safety meetings were held, and all science party members practiced putting on emergency survival suits (gumby suits), and learned about emergency procedures. The weather gods shined on us and we made good speed under blue skies and calm winds, arriving above the summit of the volcano at ~ 8 pm. The robotic vehicle ROPOS began pre-dive preparations for a series of short bounce dives to work out any possible kinks from having had the vehicle out of the water for several months over the winter.