NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer departed Guam this morning at 1200 local time. The team spent the week prior to sailing with ship repairs (including the failed sheave from Leg 1), ship tours and other public outreach events, new personnel training, and general maintenance of the ship and vehicles to ensure readiness for departure. By Thursday night, the team was prepped and ready to begin the final leg of the 2016 Deepwater Exploration of the Marianas expedition.
Once underway, we conducted mapping operations en route to the first dive site, collecting valuable data to fill in holidays. We also spent time reviewing and updating dive plans for the cruise and further training new personnel on Okeanos Explorer standard procedures and operations.