We might have departed a day late, but we are now on our way to Raoul Island! Along the way we undertook a few tests of deploying and retrieving Sentry. Some dolphins got very interested in this process and came for a visit.
|Dolphins come to visit the ship|
Sentry is worth somewhere in the range of $8 million dollars...and we are sending her to the bottom of the ocean and on top of hydrothermally active submarine volcanoes! It probably doesn’t need to be said that when dropping this sort of money into the ocean, you want to be certain that it is going to come back!! This means that Sentry needs to be able handle the high pressures associated with this depth and that it can later be retrieved from the sea surface.
|Sentry out for a test deployment at Devonport Naval Base|
|The retrieval process|
When we reach Raoul Island the HMNZS Wellington will be unloading Department of Conservation (DoC) workers and their huge amount of supplies. Meanwhile, we will have a quick look around the Caldera (the crater at the summit of the island). Once this is complete, we will be heading to Macauley Caldera where we will deploy Sentry for our first dive. In the next blog I will talk about our visit to Raoul Island.