Connecting Wally the Benthic Crawler
Welcome back to the seafloor, Wally!
Wally (they/them) is an internet-controlled benthic crawler controlled by researchers at Jacobs University in Bremen, Germany. After spending almost a decade exploring methane gas hydrates fields in Barkley Canyon, off the coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, it was time for refit and maintenance of Wally. In 2021, that work was complete and it was time for Wally to be redeployed to explore and document the seafloor again. During the 2021 expedition with Ocean Networks Canada aboard E/V Nautilus, Wally was deployed with a long cable and plugged into ONC's NEPTUNE Observatory to continue their seafloor exploration. Wally was designed to study extreme environments in the deep sea, but has connections to outer space—modeled after a space rover, Wally is also named after Disney's animated space robot Wall-E. Learn more about Wally and their collected data at the Ocean Networks Canada website.