Dive Deeper: Donna Blackman looks at the future of Alvin
Marine geophysicist Donna Blackman from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography remembers Alvin's discovery of the Lost City hydrothermal vent field in 2000 and looks ahead to the people and tools that will take Alvin to even greater depths of discovery. Commissioned in 1964 as one of the world’s first deep-ocean submersibles, Alvin has remained state-of-the-art as a result of numerous overhauls and upgrades made over its lifetime. The most recent, completed in 2013, saw the installation of a new, larger personnel sphere with a more ergonomic interior; improved visibility and overlapping fields of view; longer bottom times; new lighting and high-definition imaging systems; and improved sensors, data acquisition and download speed. It also doubled the science basket payload and improved the command-and-control system, allowing greater speed, range and maneuverability.
Provided by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution