Volume 19 Issue 11 - Publications Date: 1 November 2000
Fine-Scale Three-Dimensional Mapping of a Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vent Site Using the Jason ROV System
D.R. Yoerger, D.S. Kelley and J.R. Delaney
Using precise navigation, a computer-controlled remotely operated vehicle, and a variety of optical and acoustic imaging sensors, we created the most precise three-dimensional renderings ever made of an active hydrothermal vent field at a depth of 2400 meters on the deep sea floor. Data products included electronic and film photographs as well as three-dimensional sonar scans. We used these to produce detailed photomosaics and gridded surface renderings. Precise navigation and control of the vehicle during all transects permitted us to register all observations in a common world frame, ensured complete and uniform coverage, and allowed biases to be identified and removed. The assembled photomosaics and sonar renderings provide valuable insights into the unique environment of submarine hydrothermal vents.
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