Re-envisioning Data Management for the Facility
Tina Haskins (WHOI) and Vicki Ferrini (Lamont) are leading a data team to develop a holistic plan for NDSF vehicle data. This team will draw members from all vehicle groups and work to meet the needs of science users, operations teams, data managers, and those who want to use NDSF data. Initial goals include: standardizing the way data are structured and labeled, establishing standard metadata, and making sure that things that work for one vehicle are applied to the others. Both Tina and Vicki have extensive experience with NDSF vehicle operations and data, and are involved in disciplinary data curation with the Biological and Chemical Oceanography Data Management Office and Marine Geoscience Data System, both of which play a role in curating data from NDSF vehicles for the community. For more details on their vision for vehicle data, tune into their presentation next week at DeSSC.
New telemetry system for Jason
Over the winter, the Jason Team integrated an entirely new telemetry system into the vehicle and topside. They also tested a prototype thruster and completed comprehensive maintenance. These updates will give science users faster communication speeds while Jason is at the bottom and increase vehicle reliability by making the telemetry system compatible with available parts. Jason is presently at sea aboard the R/V Thomas G. Thompson for the Seep Larval Dispersal project.
New sidescan and custom cameras on Sentry
During the winter maintenance period, the Sentry team outfitted the AUV with a new sidescan sonar from Edgetech and a custom integration of high-resolution cameras for a spring cruise. The team is also rewriting mission control software to enable users to communicate with the vehicle and change course mid-mission and to allow the vehicle to complete surveys in more complex patterns. Sentry is also aboard the Thompson.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at NDSF
NDSF is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. As a leader in building and operating deep submergence assets that benefit the entire oceanographic community, we recognize the opportunity to make a difference by intentionally building a more diverse generation of engineers and technicians at the facility. In response to goals set within the DeSSC community last fall, NDSF is working to make internal processes more equitable in hiring and recruitment, and providing training in every one of our groups. We are also developing outreach efforts to engage historically marginalized student populations. In cooperation with host institution WHOI, funding partners NSF, ONR, and NOAA, and partners such as the Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute, NDSF is working towards structural changes across the facility to build a culture that invites and nurtures the potential of all the engineers and technicians who do this vital work.