Nancy Foster Remote Sensing Cruise
a 6-day period onboard the NOAA ship Nancy Foster in June
and July 2004, archaeologists and scientists used side scan sonar
to investigate the sanctuary's maritime heritage resources.
The NOAA ship Nancy Foster was used as the
survey platform for this project.
the towfish off the Nancy Foster's stern.
research focused on determining the extent of the debris
field around the wrecks of steamship Portland and
schooners Frank A. Palmer and Louise B. Crary
and several new shipwreck sites were also identified during
team used an Edgetech DF-1000 100/500 kHz dual frequency
side scan sonar towfish and an Edgetech 560D sonar computer
running Triton Elics International's Isis sonar acquisition
software. The side scan sonar is the primary tool the sanctuary
uses to located new maritime heritage sites.
project team surveyed several square kilometers surrounding the
Portland using a spaced lane survey, popularly known as
"mowing the lawn." Sonar recorded a debris trail extending
south from the Portland towards Cape Cod. The project also
surveyed several square kilometers around the Palmer/Crary
site without locating a pronounced debris trail.
scan sonar image of the schooners Frank A. Palmer and Louise
B. Crary captured during this survey.
Upon answering the initial research questions, the project surveyed
several areas where vessels reportedly sank. These surveys located
a number of shipwrecks. SBNMS archaeologists are currently conducting
further research to identify the newly discovered maritime heritage
Ensign Wells steers the Nancy Foster along the survey's
project was made possible through support from NOAA's
Maritime Heritage Program. Additional assistance was supplied
National Maritime Sanctuary Program, NOAA's
Office of Coast Survey, the Massachusetts
Office of Coastal Zone Management, and the National
Undersea Research Center at the University of Connecticut.