AUTONOMOUS SEDIMENT SAMPLER
AUTONOMOUS SEDIMENT SAMPLER (EN: self-contained sampler, mechanical sampler; DE: autonomer Probenehmer; FR: echantillonneur autonome; ES: probador autonomo, muestreador automatice; RU: автономный пробоотборник) is the cable-less device for the probing of the bottom of the deep sea (mainly abyssal) water areas.
The autonomous sampler comprises (Figure) the receiver of the sample (ladle, pipe, frame with the mesh), the float, the ballast, the signaling device (sound emitter, light beacon), the flag, the passive reflector. The autonomous sampler submerges due to the ballast, introduces itself into the sediments, and fills itself with the soil. Then the safety devices are activated, the ballast separates, which creates the positive buoyancy, and the autonomous sampler resurfaces. The search for the autonomous sampler with the emitters is performed by the radio direction finder, for the samplers with the flags or beacons by the visual means, for the samplers with the passive reflectors by the radar installations of the ships.
The usage of the autonomous sampler in comparison with the cable samplers increases the productivity of the sampling because of the simultaneous usage of the several devices, and the exclusion of the labour intensive operations of the descent and ascent with the usage of the winch for the deep water and the cable of the many kilometres in length.
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