WHOI In Motion

A Gallery of Animation and Video
from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Alvin Launch video

Alvin on Seafloor

For a complete description, see the Marine Operations pages about Alvin.
  Workhorse of the Deep
(QuickTime videos, 1.2 MB and 1.5 MB)
Surface ships play a critical role in ocean research, but to explore the depths most thoroughly, researchers must travel under the surface, either indirectly through the use of instruments or directly as passengers in underwater vehicles. One of the world's most famous oceanographic vehicles is WHOI's Alvin, the deep-sea submersible. Since 1964, Alvin has transported scientists to the remote recesses of the world oceans. In Alvin, a pilot and two scientists can travel as deep as 4,500 meters (14,764 feet) for 6 to 12 hours at a time. During that time, they can photograph and videotape their discoveries with Alvin's cameras, gather samples with Alvin's manipulator arms, and collect data about biological, chemical, and geological properties with instruments that Alvin carries. Just as space crafts have transported astronauts and instruments to new frontiers in the universe overhead, Alvin has opened the frontiers of discovery for marine scientists in the universe below the surface. Dive with Alvin to the bottom of the sea!

Copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998 Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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