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Instrument: Miniature Autonomous Plume Recorder


The PMEL MAPR is an inexpensive, lightweight yet rugged, simple to use self-contained instrument for recording light-backscattering (for suspended particle concentrations), oxidation-reduction potential (ORP, for detecting the presence of reduced chemical species such as H2S and Fe+2), temperature, and pressure during a wide variety of seagoing operations. MAPRs especially target operations where hydrothermal plume data are not normally collected: rock cores, dredges, or deep-towed geophysical and bottom imaging are some examples. To make these operations multi-disciplinary requires an instrument that is sensitive enough to detect hydrothermal optical anomalies yet simple enough for untrained researchers to use as an ancillary program without detracting from the time or efforts of the main sampling programs. With such an instrument, the opportunities to collect hydrothermal plume data through collaborations with other researchers, and without the need for additional dedicated technicians, expand to the global ocean.