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Launch & Recovery

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The long core operation begins with assembly of the core barrel. This process is facilitated by a special pneumatic truck that is used to maneuver the heavy barrel sections safely around the deck.

The truck delivers and aligns each barrel and coupling for easy connecting.

Custom extruded plastic [PVC] core liner is pre-marked before insertion into the core barrel assembly.

The liners are screwed together for continuity, and stuffed inside the assembled core barrel.

Internal rigging proceeds with a high strength pennant which will eventually connect the piston to the release module.

At the base of the core is a cutting shoe  which cuts and shapes the sediment for capture during penetration.

Before launch, clamps that work in tandem with the starboard tipping davits are attached.

View of the starboard side of Knorr with its maximum deplouyabel core length [150 feet] rigged and ready for launch.

The starboard davits are programmed to tip the core from horizontal to vertical with a single joystick in control.

The Long Core is vertical and clamp recovery is underway.

The clamps are lowered and ?drop off? the end of the core barrel, and are then hauled back up to the davits for recovery.

The Grapple swings the big core around to the stern of the Knorr for more rigging.

 Final positioning proceeds.  The extruder, used to extract the previous core sample is still attached.

 The corehead weight is variable during at sea operations.  Here additional weight is being added before launch proceeds.

Locking the add weights in place.

 The release module is maneuvered into place with the A-frame, tele-boom and main winch.

 Latching the release module, powered by the Benthos Smart Release, into place.

As launch proceeds, the weight is now borne by the ODIM winch, and the Grapple door is opened.

The fully rigged Long Core is free of the Grapple at the final stage of launch and is being lowered into the sea.

The rope load is transferred to the stern sheave, and afterwards lowering of the equipment to the seafloor will continue.

 When the Long core nears its target, the acoustic systems are engaged, the bottom found precisely, and the core is released for penetration.

After pullout, the equipment returns to the surface.  The release module appears first, now separated from the Long Core.

To recover the release module, the load of the Long Core just be transferred to the winch at the top of the A-frame.

After the release is recovered and secured, the corehead is aptured vertically by the waiting Grapple.

The extruder is reinstalled for sample recovery.

The Grapple returns the Long Core assembly to the starboard side.

Barrel clamps are reconnected and lowered into place on pre-cut lanyards.

 The Davits are engaged and the core barrel is hoisted to horizontal pivoting at the Grapple.

After the core is secured, extrusion begins by loading plastic pushrods into the extruder breach.

The core liner [full of stratified sediment] is received and cut into sections at the bottom of the core.

 The results are stored onboard for further analysis.

Last updated: May 7, 2008

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