Foraminifera are being collected on this cruise using the megacorer. This device takes sediment core samples from the ocean floor. The megacorer is lowered off the side of the ship to the sea floor to depths of around 4800m where the cylinders are pushed into the seabed.
The samples collected during the cruise will be taken back to Southampton and used to understand the vertical distribution of forams throughout the sediment layers. Also, the relationship of foram distribution to the topography of the sea floor at the Porcupine Abyssal Plain will be investigated.
Laetitia Gunton PhD student at National Oceanography Centre Southampton and Natural History Museum, London
Images: A variety of deep-sea benthic foraminifera