Helmholtz Association

Work Package 4300 – Sampling Tools

The main objective of this work package is to develop in situ sampling tools to be used on different carrier platforms for lunar and deep-sea applications. Specialized equipment either collects probes for further analysis or determines the relevant information directly on site.

In the deep sea, undisturbed water samples from point sources are required to chemically characterize the environment around hot vent ecosystems in space and time. Intelligent pumping devices, not disturbing the local hydrodynamics by creating artificial eddies, to collect water samples from small areas are thus highly needed. Revolver-type sampling bottles should be filled individually and if necessary it should be possible to add fixation reagents to preserve the sample for later analysis. To run such a water-sampling unit on an AUV, this should be programmable for autonomous operations triggered by detected sensor signals in a sensor-sampling-network. To measure mechanical characteristics of soft seafloor sediments, a free fall cone penetrometer FFCPT has been employed. Experience from the operation of compensated, seabed CPT with separate load cells for tip resistance and sleeve friction will be integrated in further developing this equipment.

For space operations, the small-scale portable Bevameter will be employed for assessing soil strength and pressure-sinkage parameters. The influence of the cone penetration velocity into the soil as well as the sampling tool geometry and mass will be investigated. Results for different soil types will be used in the analyses for terrain trafficability. Miniature percussive dynamic penetrometer operating at high frequency and low amplitude will be considered as an alternative to static cones.