The National Methane Hydrates R&D Program
The DOE/JIP Gulf of Mexico Hydrate Research Cruise
During this expedition we will maintain a log of information relayed from the chief Scientist on the expedition. Whenever possible, images will be displayed along with the text.
April 30 - Day 14 - Status Report
30 April 2005 - On Location Atwater Valley Block 13 - Partial FHPC core recovered
Location: On location Atwater Valley Block 13#2
Science Update: Partial Fugro Hydraulic Piston Corer (FHPC) cores were obtained as 13H and 14H over the depth interval 141 to 158 m. Full cores were collected but were jammed in the core barrel so only 2-3 m could be removed from each end. The hole was drilled down to about 200 m to begin the wireline logging program. Shipboard logging and geochemical analyses of cores have been completed on all AT13#2 cores collected to date. Several samples have been analyzed by Fugro for geotechnical properties. The cored intervals at AT13#2 will serve as a reference section for comparison with sediments to be cored at AT14#2 and on the adjacent mound. X-ray imaging of the cores enables a visual determination of the depth of the sulfate-methane interface. Dissolved methane begins to increase in concentration at the depth where sulfate is eliminated from the pore water. When the cores are brought to the surface the methane comes out of solution and causes visible small cracks and partings in the sediment. There is a distinct boundary at the base of AT13#2 core 1H showing the transition to gas containing sediment, which corresponds to the depth of the SMI as indicated by geochemical measurements.
Plans: Finish wireline logging of AT13#2. Move to AT14#2 and core the upper 30 m (3 FHPC nonpressureized cores, 1 FPC/HRC pressure core). Wash down to the 80-100 m interval and take two FHPC cores. Wash down again to the 170-230 m interval and core across the boundary of the intrusive feature on the seismic record. Drill down to 280 m and run wireline logs. Move to top of Mound and take three FHPC cores, 2 FPC/HRC cores down to 30 m. Try to do the above by May 8 and move to Keathley Canyon.
Planning and Data Sheet for AT14 - #2 [PDF-10KB]
Planning and Data Sheet for AT13 - #2 [PDF-10KB]
Includes Scientific objectives for these drill sites
Day 12 Photo Gallery - Photos by NETL scientist showing core retrieval and processing
Day 10 Photo Gallery - Pressurized core prior to transfer to lab and seabed frame preparation
Day 6 Photo Gallery - Working with push cores and ROV photos of sample collection at AT 14
Day 4 Photo Gallery - Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), Sampling, Core Handling
Day 3 Photo Gallery - Preparation for Drilling
Day 2 Photo Gallery Loading the Uncle John [PowerPoint]
The drill ship out to sea - Setting up the lab [PowerPoint]