Mission 1 — Staff Training and System Checks

Mission 1 — Staff Training and System Checks

Principal Investigator: Craig Cooper, NURC/UNCW
Training: March 6 — 7
Mission: March 7 — 11

Operations for 2006 will commence with a relatively short five day saturation, serving as a “shakedown mission” to test systems following the winter maintenance season, and prepare for the upcoming eighteen day NASA mission. During the mission, the aquanauts will be installing, labeling,trimming out excursion lines to some of the more remote sites, and working with topside support divers to deploy and assemble two aquanaut waystations with comms and underwater tank filling capabilities. The two waystations are the Kamper Station, located in 95 fsw 350 feet SE of the habitat, and the Northeast waystation, located in 55 fsw and 900 feet NE of the habitat. Each will allow aquanauts working on the deeper reefs around Aquarius to fill tanks closer to their work sites, instead of traveling back to the habitat to fill. Topside divers will deploy the Kamper and NE stations from our work boat, and final assembly will be completed by the saturation divers, who have six hours bottom time allowable, opposed to 25 minutes for the topside team. All excursion/navigation lines will be deployed, clearly marked, and adjusted to set up the operating field for the NASA NEEMO IX mission, these lines are paramount to the aquanauts’ safe return to the habitat from their excursions almost 1000 foot distant.

Shakedown/training missions are run as full saturations, they are shorter duration, but full decompression is required.