Getting the bigger picture: Using precision Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) videography to acquire high-de?nition mosaic images of newly discovered hydrothermal vents in the Southern Ocean


Marsh, Leigh, Copley, Jonathan T., Huvenne, Veerle A.I., Tyler, Paul A. and Isis ROV Facility, [Unknown] (2013) Getting the bigger picture: Using precision Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) videography to acquire high-de?nition mosaic images of newly discovered hydrothermal vents in the Southern Ocean Deep-Sea Research II, 92, pp. 124-135. (doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2013.02.007).

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Description/Abstract

Direct visual observations from submersible vehicles at hydrothermal vents typically only reveal a
fraction of the vent environment at any one time. We describe the use of precision Remotely Operated
Vehicle (ROV) videography to produce extensive mosaic images of hydrothermal vent chimneys and
surrounding seafloor areas (c. 250 m2), with sufficient resolution to determine distributions of macroand
megafauna. Doppler velocity log navigation (DVLNAV) was used to follow overlapping vertical
survey lines in a fixed plane facing a vent chimney, while acquiring high-definition video imagery using
a forward-looking camera. The DVLNAV also enabled the vehicle to follow overlapping horizontal
survey lines while acquiring seafloor imagery from a downward-looking video camera and mapping
variations in seawater temperature. Digital stills images extracted from video were used to compile
high-resolution composite views of the surveyed areas. Applying these image acquisition techniques at
vent fields on the East Scotia Ridge, Southern Ocean, revealed consistent patterns of faunal zonation
around vent sources, variations in proportions of faunal assemblage types on different faces of a vent
chimney, and differences in proportions of faunal assemblages between two different vent fields. The
technique can therefore be used to determine the composition and spatial distribution of fauna across
complex areas of topography, such as vent fields, where mosaic images of vertical structures cannot
currently be acquired using other platforms such as autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). These
image acquisition techniques, demonstrated here in the first ROV dives at newly discovered vent fields,
may offer an appropriate technology for rapid baseline studies required by the potential mining of
seafloor massive sulfides (SMS).

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2013.02.007
ISSNs: 0967-0645 (print)
Keywords: Remotely Operated Vehicle, Hydrothermal vents, Image processing, Faunal distribution, Baseline survey, Seafloor massive sulphides (SMS)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GC Oceanography
Q Science > QD Chemistry
Q Science > QE Geology
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Organisations: Ocean Biochemistry & Ecosystems, Marine Geoscience
ePrint ID: 351792
Date :
Date Event
8 February 2013Accepted/In Press
August 2013Published
Date Deposited: 26 Apr 2013 08:56
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2017 15:38
Further Information:Google Scholar
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/351792

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