Blog Posts Tagged "derrick"

Preparing for U1332

Here's an explanation with new vocabulary to help you prepare for Site U1332.  See Ron's updates for more about locations and  plans.

Big things, little things

After we've toured the drilling floor, I am getting a strange picture of the scale of these operations. There are many big things aboard this ship: big drills, several kilometers of pipe, a derrick, kilometers of cable and a huge winch.

Arrival at the Site!

At midnight last evening we arrived at our destination out over the Juan de Fuca plate. My cabin mate and I went out at 1:00 a.m. to watch the piping operation get under way. The crew worked like a piece of machinery as they hoisted strings of pipe high up into the derrick and then lowered them down toward the sea floor. The machinery that they work with is huge, heavy, and amazing.

The View From the Top


One of the most recognizable features of the JOIDES Resolution is its derrick. This imposing tower stands 190 feet above the water line…almost 20 stories high! The derrickmen onboard routinely climb to the top to service and maintain the crown sheaves: large blocks or pulleys that form the uppermost part of the rig. The drilling line—a heavy wire rope—runs between the crown blocks and the traveling blocks in an arrangement that provides mechanical advantage to raise and lower the drill string. One of the derrickmen, Bobby, who has been working on the JR for 27 years, took three members of the science party on a rare tour of the crown, and I was amazingly lucky enough to be among them! I have spent a lot of time sailing on tall ships: climbing up the ratlines, looking out from the crow’s nest, or working on the yardarm to set and stow the sails. I am not afraid of heights; rather I find them exhilarating. So I was ready for my climb. Still, it took my breath away!