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Diffuse Vent Fluid 3-D Temperature Array

The Diffuse Vent Fluid 3-D Temperature Array measures temperatures of diffuse flow across the seafloor. The thermistor array is designed as 4 stacked triangular arrays with 24 independent temperature measurement points, providing a three-dimensional distribution of temperature. Moderate- to low-temperature hydrothermal fluids exiting diffuse flow sites on Axial Volcano support communities of animals that include limpets, tubeworms, scale worms, clams, and Pycnogonida, an arthropod that resembles a spider. Critical to understanding how these communities thrive, evolve, and expire are long-term measurements of fluid temperature and chemistry, coupled with direct imagery.

A custom thermistor array, developed by UW Project Scientist, Giora Proskurowski, is designed to measure the 3-dimensional distribution of temperatures within a diffuse flow site. Within the four layers of blue cable, there are 24 places where temperatures will be continuously measured. When installed at the base of a hydrothermal chimney within the ASHES hydrothermal field at the summit of Axial Volcano, the cabled thermistor array will provide a real-time 3-dimensional “view” of the temperature structure at this site. Such data will provide information about the environmental conditions within which the biological assemblages thrive and evolve. Other installations at this site include an osmotic sampler, to determine the temporal evolution of fluids, and a high-definition video camera, to study fluid velocities and the evolution of animal and microbial communities within the context of evolving environmental conditions (e.g. earthquakes, lunar tides, eruptions).

Data Products

This instrument measures the following data products. Select a data product's name to learn more.

Instrument Models & Deployed Locations

The OOI includes the following instrument makes and models for this instrument type. Follow the links below to find out where in the OOI this instrument has been deployed. You'll also find quick links for each instrument to Data portal, where you can plot and access data.

Series Make Model
TMPSFA RBR Global XR-420

A 3D thermistor array designed by Project Scientist Dr. Giora Proskurowski is deployed in the ASHES vent field for testing. The blue cable holds 24 temperature sensors and was provided by RBR Ltd. The array is placed in a diffuse flow site at the base of the vent called Mushroom, a site hosting abundant vent fauna. These data, coupled with seismic information, fluid chemistry, and HD imagery will be used to see how these systems evolve over time and how earthquakes influence chemical and biological processes. Photo credit: NSF-OOI/UW/CSSF Creative Commons License

Primary Science Discipline

Drawing of the 3D Thermistor Array configuration.

The thermistor array provides a 3-dimensional "view" of the temperature structure, which will help inform the community about the environmental conditions under which the biological assemblages thrive and evolve. Photo credit: OOI-NSF/UW/CSSF Creative Commons License