U.K.-based Ocean Scientific International Ltd (OSIL) has introduced a new sediment corer designed to be mounted to the skids of remotely operated vehicles (ROV) or autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV).
The self-contained system will allow sediment samples to be collected during routine ROV operations and can be daisy chained together to allow multiple core assemblies to be installed as one system. The assemblies are powered and controlled by the customers own skid control unit and have been pressure tested for use in depths of up to 1,200m, with deeper units currently in development.
The design is based around the industry standard multiple (multi) corer, and each assembly recovers a 400mm sample containing 300mm sediment and 100mm supernatant water. Disturbance of the sample is minimal as the core tubes seal after sampling to preserve the sediment/water interface, and the rate of penetration can be adjusted to suit environmental conditions.
Each complete assembly weighs approximately 12kg in air and exerts a downward penetration force of up to approximately 15kg. On recovery the core tubes can be recovered and replaced swiftly, and can either be sampled directly, or frozen and sampled subsequently.
OSIL said its precision engineering facilities allowed a development prototype to be demonstrated to the customer before the final design specification was agreed.