At the Endeavor site, a northern segment of the Juan de Fuca Ridge, the earth's tectonic plates are spreading apart, and magma is welling up creating new crust. In some places, water is being drawn down below the surface, superheated by the magma, and expelled through hydrothermal vents. These vents deposit dissolved minerals on the seafloor and overtime build up to become large chimneys. E/V Nautilus encountered some extraordinarily large and elaborate examples of these smokers on a recent dive in partnership with Ocean Networks Canada.
The E/V Nautilus will transit up the west coast of the United States to explore Canadian waters for the first time. The mission is to install and connect the Internet to the deep sea the west coast of Canada in the northeast Pacific.
Ocean Networks Canada (ONC) operates world leading cabled ocean observatories that supply continuous power and Internet connectivity to a broad suite of subsea instruments. The ONC observatory installations span one of the widest ranges of ocean environments found anywhere in the world.