HURL completes banner year of dives on a tight budget

The deep sea is a dark, cold, remote place—yet many Earth processes, and likely the origin of life itself, occur uniquely there. Few have been able to study its wonders in person. The Hawaiʻi Undersea Research Laboratory (HURL) maintains two of the last manned submersibles in the world, the Pisces IV and the Pisces V. Even during tight budgetary times, the subs have enabled incredible research, discovery, and exploration—not just for researchers but for students, as well.

“We have just completed a banner year,” said Terry Kerby, director of facilities and submersible operations at HURL. “It is hard to believe all that happened in 2016.”

During test dives in March, HURL was fortuitously able to recover the bronze bell from the I-400, a World War II-era Imperial Japanese Navy mega-submarine, lost since 1946 when it was intentionally sunk by U.S. forces after its capture. Following that, HURL secured a contract with the Navy to train U.S. Navy Special Operations Command divers how to pilot the Launch, Recovery and Transport platform.

“This was what allowed us to keep our excellent crew intact for a few more months and gave me time to put together more Pisces dives,” said Kerby.

Read more about it and watch the video reports in the UH System News.