Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Cruise Planning Synopsis

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AT40-03: Lyle 'WNAT'


R/V Atlantis

Cruise Party

Mitch Lyle: Chief Scientist, Principal Investigator
CEOAS, Oregon State University 104 CEOAS Admin Bldg Corvallis, OR USA 97331
+1 541 801 9872

Gregory Mountain: Chief Scientist, Principal Investigator
Rutgers University New Brunswick 610 Taylor Rd Piscataway, New Jersey United States 08854
+1 848 445 0817

Departure: Jun 14, 2018

St. George's Bermuda

Arrival: Jul 17, 2018

Woods Hole MA

Operations Area

Western North Atlantic
Depth Range: 3000 / 5000
Will the vessel be operating within 200 NM of a foreign country? closest point D is > 200 nma from Canadian coastline
Are visas or special travel documents required? yes

Science Objectives

The objective of this cruise is to collect site survey data for proposed IODP paleoceanographic drilling in the western North Atlantic.  Drilling, combined with seismic reflection surveys will explore when deep waters formed in the North Atlantic. Subsequent sampling of drill cores will investigate the thermal evolution of the North Atlantic.

We will survey with subbottom profilers, multibeam mapping, and high-resolution seismic reflection profiles. The seismic reflection surveys will be run in 2 configurations: a reconnaisance survey mode at 8 knots nominal speed to tie regional seismic stratigraphy to existing and proposed drill sites, and a high-resolution 5-knot surveys mode to best locate places to drill.

Science Activities

See the Map in supporting documents (2017-11-13_WNAT_Survey_Map). Yellow lines mark sections for 8-knot reconnaisance seismic surveys, and red dots labeled with "Survey" mark areas for detailed 5-knot, high-resolution surveys.  Site 563 and Site 558 are existing DSDP drill sites.

We plan  to transit from Bermuda, and turn on the subbottom profiler whenever possible after leaving Bermuda. Because of IHA restrictions, we will not be able to do multibeam surveys unless we have deployed the seismic gear. We plan to deploy the 8-knot seismic streamer and source configuration at point A, and do the reconnaisance survey (multibeam, subbottom profiler, and 8-knot seismic) to the Survey 1 location.  Each of the 6 Survey sites will first be surveyed at 8 knots to determine bathymetry and locate promising basins, and then will be surveyed at 5 knots with a different source/streamer configuration to acquire the best seismic reflection profiles needed to site potential drill sites.

After Survey 1, we will do reconnaisance surveys at 8 knots passing over existing DSDP Sites 563 and 558, and then survey at 5 knots from Site 558 through Survey site 2. After Survey 2, we will again deploy the reconnaisance seismic configuration to collect tie-in seismic data to Survey 3. After Survey 3, the reconnaisance streamer will be deployed for the tie-in to Survey 4.  After Survey 4, a section will be surveyed with the reconnaisance configuration until point B, followed by a transit section with multibeam and seismic systems off. 

We will re-deploy the reconnaisance survey gear at point C, and survey into Survey 5. After mapping there we will again deploy the 5-knot seismic gear to complete our hi-resolution survey at that site. We will change to reconnaisance seismic gear, do a tie-in survey to Survey 6, and do the hi-resolution site survey there. Following Survey 6 we will deploy the reconnaisance seismic gear for a final time and survey across the Western North Atlantic Basin to Orphan Knoll.  When that reconnaisance tie-in seismic line is complete we will retrieve the gear at point D, turn off the multibeam and sub-bottom profiler in compliance with the IHA, and transit back to Woods Hole.

Additional Info

Pre-cruise Planning Meeting: Teleconference


Supporting documentation:



Funding Agency: NSF
Grant or contract number: OCE-1656960

Scientific Instrumentation for R/V Atlantis

Other Science Vans:

Shipboard Equipment

Sippican XBT System (Mark 21)
Bathymetry System 3.5 kHz
ADCP 75 kHz
Navigation - Heading
Navigation - Position
Towed Magnetometer

Shipboard Communication

Basic Internet access via HiSeasNet

Critical CTD Sensors

Storage Notes:


Will you be using Long Base Line (LBL) navigation? no
How many nets? null
How many tansponders? null
Will you be using Ultra-short baseline (USBL) navigation?no


Navigation Notes: Seismic operations directed by Lee Ellett will need continuous navigation fed into the seismic records while surveying.  Conversation between Lee and ship ops is needed to determine how this will be managed.


Other Portable Winch
Winch Notes: Winches for deploying and retreiving air guns and streamers for seismic acquisition will be supplied by Scripps.
Winch Notes:

Standard Oceanographic Cables

Slip ring required? no
Non-standard wire required? no
Traction winch required? no
Science Van 1
Type/size: discuss with Lee Ellett at meeting Location:
Water: Power:

Specialized Deck Equipment

Mooring Deployment/Recovery Equipment Required: no Type: 
Cruise Specific Science Winch Required: no Type: 
Nets Required: no Type: 

Over the Side Equipment

Will you be bringing any equipment (winches, blocks, etc.) that lowers instruments over the side? yes Details: We will be deploying the Scripps portable high-resolution seismic system, in 2 configurations, under the direction of Lee Ellett.  This will include an air compressor that will be powered either by a diesel or electric motor, so there will be requirements for either diesel fuel or electrical power on the fantail.  Contact Lee for specifics.

Special Requirements

Elecrical Power: no Identify 
Equipment Handling: no Identify: 
Inter/intraship Communications: no Identify: 
Science Stowage: no Identify: 
Water: no Identify: 

Additional Cruise Items/Activities

Explosive Devices:no Portable Air Compressors:yes Flammable Gases:no Small Boat Operations:no SCUBA Diving Operations:no

Hazardous Material

Will hazardous material be utilized?noDescribe deployment method and quantity:

Radioactive Material


Additional Information

Is night time work anticipated on this cruise?yesSpecialized tech support (Seabeam, coring, other):
We will be working at all times in a survey mode.Other required equipment and special needs:
Multibeam editing software (MBSystems), workstations for editing. Network access for multiple workstations brought by the scientiifc party. Access to large screen monitors for seismic/map display.

Checklist & Notes


U.S. Customs Form: no
Diplomatic Clearance: no
Date Submitted:
Date Approved:
Agent Information:
Isotope Use Approval: no
Isotope Notes:
SCUBA Diving: no


SSSG Tech: