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Phase one of Ocean Sciences Centre upgrade complete

OSC's new deep sea water line.


By Kelly Foss

A new deep-sea water intake pipeline for the Ocean Sciences Centre (OSC) was completed in December.

Construction on the intake, which is critical for holding marine animals at the Logy Bay facility, involved horizontal directional drilling of a 490-metre-long, 55-centimeter diameter bore hole from the OSC parking lot to an exit point on the ocean floor 34 metres below sea level.

This $3.3 million project is the first of three stages in a major $20 million upgrade of the infrastructure at the Logy Bay research centre, which will result in new leading edge facilities for research on cold-water and deep-sea organisms and ecosystems. The second stage involves building a pump house to deliver the high quality, low temperature sea water on a year-round basis to the OSC.

A third stage will see the construction of a new building containing wet and dry laboratory space, and new state-of-the-art equipment, which will allow researchers to conduct research on living deep sea organisms, infectious fish pathogens and invasive marine animal species within a maximum security containment facility. Specialized tanks will also make it possible to work on animals at depths equivalent to 3,000 metres – all of which will improve and enhance research capacity at the OSC.

Other work will involve renovation and expansion of aquatic animal holding areas, a new utilities annex with larger electric backup generators and new boilers.

Construction on all phases is expected to be complete by 2013.