Seafloor Samples Laboratory Woods Hole Oceanographic Insitution


piston core
ALVIN taking ‘precision’ cores at 4,000 meters.
The samples that we archive were collected on more than 425 separate oceanographic expeditions. The material in the collection was extracted from the seabed utilizing a wide variety of sampling hardware. Many specialized coring systems, dredges, grabs and articulating manipulators have been employed over the years to recover undisturbed samples of the seafloor. You'll find equipment configurations in use today here [look at hardware]. While the vast majority of the collection qualifies as ‘blue water’ (from deep ocean environments), we also keep cores from lakes in Africa, as well as North and South America.

WHOI Seafloor Samples Collection Summary
Total Holdings as of 9/2000 - 14,023 Archived Samples
Number of cores 3858
Total length of cores in storage 14150 meters
Number of dredges 1435
Number of ALVIN dives with samples 387
Number of ALVIN “stations” (discrete samples) 1760
Number of continental margin grab samples 5550
Number of samples from ROV’s and misc. devices 1420

Recent Sample Acquisitions
Cruise Samples General Area
NEECHO 97 22 PC’S, 11 GC’S Lake Titicaca, Bolivia
BOW 97 45 GC’S Persian Gulf
JCR 31 62 dredges Atlantis Bank
CONMAR 97-4 144 vibracores US Continental Margin
NEECHO 98 16 PC’S, 5 GC’S, 12 BC’S Lake Titicaca, Bolivia
MODE 98 32 dredges, 13 SUBM Atlantis Fracture Zone
OCE 326 15 multicores Bermuda Rise
BOW 09-98 40 PC’S Persian Gulf
KNORR 159-5 120 cores [JPC, GC, MC] Brazil Slope, S.P. Plateau
AVON 36 dredges Samoan Shelf
OCE 349 4 MC, 4 BC Blake Bahama Outer Ridge
KNR 159-7 20 MC, 13 GC Cape Verde Plateau
IMAGES V 10 PC’S Greenland Sea
CH 0798 15 MCsS, 10 GC’S Bermuda Rise
ALVIN samples from 62 dives various locations