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

Getting the bigger picture: Using precision Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) videography to acquire high-definition mosaic images of newly discovered hydrothermal vents in the Southern Ocean
Getting the bigger picture: Using precision Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) videography to acquire high-definition mosaic images of newly discovered hydrothermal vents in the Southern Ocean
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 macro and 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).
Remotely Operated Vehicle, Hydrothermal vents, Image processing, Faunal distribution, Baseline survey, Seafloor massive sulphides (SMS)
0967-0645
124-135
Marsh, Leigh
d8e1a926-092f-4cab-83f3-3345e2815086
Copley, Jonathan T.
5f30e2a6-76c1-4150-9a42-dcfb8f5788ef
Huvenne, Veerle A.I.
f22be3e2-708c-491b-b985-a438470fa053
Tyler, Paul A.
d1965388-38cc-4c1d-9217-d59dba4dd7f8
Isis ROV Facility, [Unknown]
ea636cc0-b837-44cb-a5dd-895252c1215a
Marsh, Leigh
d8e1a926-092f-4cab-83f3-3345e2815086
Copley, Jonathan T.
5f30e2a6-76c1-4150-9a42-dcfb8f5788ef
Huvenne, Veerle A.I.
f22be3e2-708c-491b-b985-a438470fa053
Tyler, Paul A.
d1965388-38cc-4c1d-9217-d59dba4dd7f8
Isis ROV Facility, [Unknown]
ea636cc0-b837-44cb-a5dd-895252c1215a

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-definition mosaic images of newly discovered hydrothermal vents in the Southern Ocean Deep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography, 92, pp. 124-135. (doi:10.1016/j.dsr2.2013.02.007).

Record type: Article

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 macro and 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).

Text Marsh et al 2013.pdf - Version of Record
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 8 February 2013
Published date: August 2013
Keywords: Remotely Operated Vehicle, Hydrothermal vents, Image processing, Faunal distribution, Baseline survey, Seafloor massive sulphides (SMS)
Organisations: Ocean Biochemistry & Ecosystems, Marine Geoscience

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 351792
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/351792
ISSN: 0967-0645
PURE UUID: 6bed89a2-ff85-4a3c-8599-be9f94ae4137

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Date deposited: 26 Apr 2013 08:56
Last modified: 03 Oct 2017 16:40

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Contributors

Author: Leigh Marsh
Author: Veerle A.I. Huvenne
Author: Paul A. Tyler
Author: [Unknown] Isis ROV Facility

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