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Lophelia II: Deepwater Platform Corals (BOEM and NOAA-OER)
14 – 24 July 2012
R/V Brooks McCall and ROV Kraken2


The final cruise of the Lophelia II project involved an extensive survey of deepwater energy platforms for cold-water corals in the Gulf of Mexico. We sailed on TDI-Brooks’ ship R/V Brooks McCall with the ROV Kraken2 from NURTEC at the University of Connecticut. Our primary objective was to document, image, and collect samples of Lophelia pertusa at targeted production platforms. We visited a total of 4 platforms and 1 inactive subsea drilling well, and found Lophelia at each site! The results from this cruise will help us understand more about Lophelia’s growth rate and Gulf-wide distribution. One of our biggest surprises was finding Lophelia at 799 m – a new record for the Gulf – at the Ram Powell platform. This exciting discovery was featured in the “By the Numbers” section of Science on August 17, 2012.


More information: NOAA Ocean Explorer