Image Of The Day

March 31, 2015

The Hole Story

WHOI senior research assistant Justin Ossolinski collects gear after helping core a Porites lobata coral colony off Danger Island in the Chagos Archipelago. The bright white coral skeleton visible in the core is composed of aragonite, a form of calcium carbonate, with the living coral polyps only forming a thin layer on the surface. After coring, the borehole is capped with a concrete plug, and new polyps will grow over the plug, completely healing the scar in 1 to 2 years. The length of the core (1.4 meters or 4.5 feet) suggest that climate records contained in the core may extend back 150 to 200 years. (Photo by Konrad Hughen, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Coral core