The Linear Cable Engine (LCE) ready to begin deploying the OOI cable.The LCE Machine is used to bear the weight of and pay out the cable.
--Photo by Cecile Durand, University of Washington, onboard the TE SubCom Dependable.
After 11 hours of transit, we are now at the location of the RSN Midplate node, at the start of our first cable segment (Segment 6). Water depth is about 2,850m. The seabed is flat and covered with a thick layer of sediment. This segment is about 210km long and will be surface laid onto the seabed across the Juan de Fuca Ridge in the direction of Axial Seamount. This task will take a few days. First comes the anchor and ground rope (scrap cable) and then the RSN cable comes out of the vessel tank through the Linear Cable Engine (LCE). Excitement is building onboard for the OL/UW team; for everybody else it seems like just another day at work.
---Cecile Durand, OOI Regional Scale Nodes Marine Maintenance Manager at the University of Washington, from aboard the TE SubCom Dependable