RV Investigator’s gondola is nearing completion and so too is the section in the hull of the ship where it will be attached.
The gondola will house several important acoustic instruments, including two swath mappers, to map the seafloor. One operates to a depth of about 500 metres and will be used on the shelf and the upper slope for very high-resolution maps. The other is a full ocean-depth mapper, which is able to map at depths of 7 kilometres and about 15 kilometres either side of the ship.
The gondola will also contain a sub-bottom profiler that can determine the make-up of the seafloor. A signal coming from this equipment can penetrate to around 25 metres into sand and about 100 metres in loose sediments.
Here are the latest photos showing the gondola in the fabrication shed and the part of the hull of the ship, where the gondola will be attached.