CBR Core Drilling Test

While collecting samples and analyzing the seafloor, we are also developing and testing the corer that will eventually be used on the project’s ROV to drill the coralligenous in its native environment. This work is carried on by the researchers at the University of Calabria.

To avoid testing the drill on the precious coralligenous samples, the drilling test is performed on calcareous tufa (selected for its geomechanical similarity with the coralligenous). The area selected for the collection of the samples is «Pietra Gna’zzita» near the Longobucco village (Calabria, Italy).

The prototype consists in a brushless gearmotor (with two speed ratio) manufactured by 3D printing technologies (plastic and metal) mounted on a linear slider fixed on a stainless-steel frame.

Prototype 3D model

The test bench is designed to simulate drilling in a controlled environment (the water tank), using a 63mm diamond core drill. Several tests allow to evaluate the operating parameters of the coring system (rpm, feed rate, etc.) and the mechanical resistance of samples characterized by large cavities. A wi-fi interface has been used to monitor the motor control unit and record log data.

The results allow to measure the optimal operating parameters to identify the requirements of the system and optimize the design process of the mechatronic platform to be installed on the ROV.

Let’s Design the Ocean

Teachers and students of the International Master’s Degree in Marine Sciences collaborate with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission – UNESCO, for the design and public presentation of the Ocean and Climate Village space at PreCOP26 at the Milano Triennale https://all4climate2021.org/.

The PreCOP is the preparatory ministerial meeting that precedes the COP (Conference of the Parties), the United Nations climate summit. This year PreCOP26 will be hosted in Milan and COP26 will be held in Glasgow.

The Ocean and Climate Village is an educational space where children and families can learn about the message and objectives of the Decade of the Sea, with a focus on climate change and the Mediterranean Sea. The village is designed as a cluster of educational activities for different age groups, from the youngest to the adults.

For more information and book your entrance https://decenniodelmare.it/oceanclimate-village/

@decenniodelmare #triennaleMilano @unimib @ioc_unesco @all4climate2021

CBR3, swiping the (sea)floor

A second phase of the CBR3 campaign. The researchers of the University of Milano-Bicocca (you can see in the picture, Alessandra Savini and Luca Fallati in scuba gear!) are doing the photogrammetry. They are taking a series of continuous pictures of the seafloor at 30 m depth with the high-definition camera.

Once again Suttakkua diving aided the CBR3 campaign.

This dim-light environment fosters the ideal conditions for the coralligenous to thrive, but there are still many unknown to the understanding of this amazing ecosystem. The photogrammetry will create a 3D model that is going to be integrated with the sea bottom profile (acquired during the CBR1 campaign), allowing us to shed more light on the geology and geomorphology of the seafloor.

Follow us on Instagram @cresciblureef #CBR to see other amazing video of the CBR3 campaign.

CBR3: Testing the Camera!

Here we are, the CBR3 has started and with it the first attempt to photogrammetry on the coralligenous. In the picture you can see Alessandra Savini and Luca Fallati (of the University of Milano-Bicocca) working at ca. 10 m depth, with the indispensable help of the Suttakkua diving.

They are swiping the sea floor testing the high-definition camera. After the test they will go to higher depths searching for the coralligenous and use the camera there. The objective is to integrate the acquired images with the sea bottom profile, thus creating a reliable 3D model for the analyses. We will use this 3D model, with the samples acquired during the CBR2, to better understand the geological and geomorphological conditions under which the coralligenous grows.

Follow us on Instagram @cresciblureef #CBR to see other amazing video of the CBR3 campaign.

We got it! 🙌

After five days of intense work, we can announce: we got it!

Riccardo Leonardi (technician at the University of Catania) and our local collaborators from Suttakkua diving did 5 dives, during which they were able to collect two amazing coralligenous build-ups we identified at 36 m of water depth. They also collected the sediments from surrounding area and small surface samples from other near-by coralligenous structures. In addition, they placed the Concretion Accretion Unit (CAU) which will help us in understanding how and when different organisms are able to encrust. The coralligenous structure are 40 and 56 cm in height. They show a high biodiversity at surface, with fleshy algae, erected bryozoans, mollusks, serpulids and for sure calcareous algae. Below this surface aspect, the structures are both very compact (and heavy) and dominated by calcareous algae, bryozoans and serpulids.

Stay tuned! We cannot wait to start the study of these amazing samples!




CBR1 – Mission completed!

The study site in front of Marzamemi has been investigated by remote sensing and ground-truthed by the use of remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) to record videos.

During our explorations, we found several sites, identified on the base of the signal recognized on the acoustic data-set, hosting beautiful coralligenous outcrops. The build-ups have been recorded between 35 and 85 m of water depth.

We faced some problems with the ROV but in the end we were able to solve it and identify our target!

CBR1 completed!

What’s next? Stay tuned!

It’s time for calibration.

We spent all day in assembly and calibration.

The Multibeam Echosounder is an acoustic device. It measures the time of acoustic waves travelling into the water column to reconstruct the topography of the seafloor. Data collected allow us to create a digital terrain model of the study site.

The multibeam system works together with a motion sensor, to correct picth, roll and heading of the device, plus a sound velocity profiler, a probe for the calibration of the speed of the acoustic waves into the water.

The assembly and the calibration are delicate and fundamental steps for the success of the field survey.

Motion sensor is .. acting up, but we never give up!