Manned Undersea Science and Technology Needs Focus and Direction

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1977-07-14.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

     OF THE UNITED STA TES ~~~~~~~~~~i\il\lll\~~~l                   I Ml03048

     Manned Undersea Science
     And Technology Needs
     Focus And Direction
     National Oceanic and Atmospheric                       Administration
     De+atnient of Commerce

                             for us. manned
     undersea resew&-have not been clearly de-
     fined. Until this &d&e it would be difficult
     to est&ii    a Jevel of fun&g or new facilities
     needed to support an’ expanded Federal
     manned undelseamearch program.

     FAzke          of N@NI& Undeqee Science and
                      (Nabonal Oceamc and Atmos-
     pheric A%kstration)         could be desimated to
     provide leadershii and focus to manned un-
     dersea activiiies. If so, it should be responsible
     for ascertaini     the manned undersea needs of
     various Federa  “a mies      involved in these acti-
     vities and for proposing development and
     acquisition of facilit~u to meet these needs. It
     should also be a national focal
     menned undemm activities to t2oorE~~s
     manage the 1138of manned submersibles and
     underwater habitrtr and to provide informa-
     tion to users of tts sewices on current and
     plmnd      research p ‘ects, research results,
     and te+@agii         de33pments.

                                                            JULY 14,1977

                          COMPTROLLER         GENERAL      OF THE      UNITED   SATES
                                            WASHINGTON.     E.C.    X5.8


The Eonorable            Lowell         P. tieicker,          Jr.
Snited. States           Senate
Dear Senator            Weicker:
       As requested   in you: July 7, 1975, letter       (see app. I),
we studied the problems,      present status,     and future of manned
undersea science and technology.         We provided preliminary
information    to your office    in December 1976 and February      1977.
After    the December meetina    we were asked to concentrate      on a
list   of 12 questions provided by your office.          (See ape. II.)
       We obtained much of our information      from representatives
of the marine science community in the Federal Government,
including   the Manned Undersea Science and Technology Office
of the National    Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,         De-
partment of Commerce, the National       Science Foundation,     and
the Navy; universities;      private industry;    and advisory    com-
mittees.    The responses to the 12 questions       are categorized
under the following     headings:
         --Research Areas Where Submersibles                                    Can be Used
            (question 1).                                                          w
         --Facilities   1 (questions    8 and 9).
         --Barriers     and Limitations    to Expanded Use
            of Undersea Science and Technology
            (que*;tions   2, 3, 4, 5, and 12).
         --Federal        Administration                  of Manned Undersea
            Trograms        (questions             6,     7, 10,           and 11).
    . Manned undersea                   science     and technology     can be defined as
the use of manned undersea                      equipment and techr,igues      to con-
duct ocean research.   This                      includes   research    with manned
submersibles   or habitats                    and by divers.       ?lanned submersibles
setve as observation      o:atforms                        and a means of transporting
scientists   and their    instruments                         tc soecific locations    in the
water.       Some submersibles                   have lockout                capabilities     which

permit a diver to leave the facility           to do scientific   studies
and then reenter         while remaining  submerged.    Habitats  are
stationary    facilities       used to house the divers    who make
studies    on or near the ocean bottom.
       Xanned undersea activity        should nst 50 ccnsidered     ar:
entity   in itself,   but rather      one of many techniques     used
to study ocean processes and phenomena.             It often comole-
ments surface-based      investigations.       Xannsd subxersi$.es
and habitats     are usually    expensive    to operate and should
be used only when a high priority           need is shown and alter-
native   :es earth tools are not applicable.
        The Xational    Oceanic and A*Saospheric Administration,
the National      Science Pcundation,      asld the !?avq' have undertaker.
or sponsored manned undersea research.               Although    the Navy
and the National        Oceanic and Ataos?heric       Administration      do
some of their        own research,   much of it is done by the
academic community.          Private  industry    is also involved      in
manned undersea research by designing,              building,    and testing
        Undersea research has suffered           from (1) the lack of
overall    ocean research goals and objectives,               (2) a national
focus, and (3) sporadic          funding.     The Wational       0cr:anic and
Atmospheric      Administration      attempted     to provide      a national
focus for manned undersea research when itqestablz'shed                     the
Manned Undersea Science and Technology Office                  in 1971.
However, its budget was restricted             to level     funding of about
$1 million     a year and its objectiwes           were narrowed to supnort
only in-house      investigations.        In another attempt to provide
a national     focus for manned undersea. research,              the Congress
appropriated      anrdditional       $1.5 million      in fiscal      year 1977
for the National       Oceanic and Atmospheric           Administration       ;o
support surveys,       mission analyses,       cost analyses,         and design
and engineering       studies    for an underwater        ocean laboratory
known as Oceanlab.           (See pp. 5, 7, and 9.)
      The tasks,    rather than the type of science,       determine
the suitability    of using manned undersea techniques.
Submersibles    have unique capabilities     to perform complex
manipulations    and precise sampling activities,       as well
as oroviding    a platform   to observe  processes    in the deep
sea.    Tasks for which manned undersea facilities         offer major
advantages include

  s   --detailed     observations         of marine organisms,
         topographic     features,        and processes:
      --selective        sampling    of the bottom           environment:
      --selective     positioning,         servicing,         or recovery      of
         instruments:     and
      --finding       new and unsuspected occurrences that
          remote    instruments  were not designed to detect.
      Manned undersea activity          can be used to some extent          in
aany ocean research areas including            biology,    geologj,    ecology,
and physics.      Submersibles     are useful for geological          and
geopnysical    research     in support of conventional         trcLniquec,
such as dredge and core sampling,           towed camsre sleds,        and
sonar readings.       For example, conventional         rechniq.es     can
be used for preparing        bathymetric    maps acd idknt!Fving         fea-
tures requiring      closer study.       Then manned submersibles          can
be used to observe       the features     and take sample data.
        Habitats     are most suited to projects    requiring   long-term
monitoring       of environmental   conditions   or organisms in their
natural    state.       Processes which occur rapidly     can be studied
in their     entirety.
     Research areas         where manned undersea              submersibles             can
be used include:
      1.    Biology:
            --Assessing      marine      biological         resources.&             '
            --Studying   the life     cycles of biological      org:jn-
               isms and their    relationships      to the ocean's
               physical,   chtmical,     and geological    characteristics.
      L.    Geology:
            --Studying      geological       processes        of t%       ocean bottom.
            --Studying      envi:onmental         effects      of marine      mining.
            --Studying      sedimentation        processes        on the ocean
            --Studying    and investigating             in detail the continental
               shelf,  slopes,   submarine            canyons, and cliffs.
I   B-145099
                     --Studying       deposition;;      and erosion,:1      processes.
               3".   Ecology:
                     --Inspecting       existinq      waste dis?oszl       sites     and
                         selecting     new ones.
                     --Subsequent       monitoring      of disposal      sites.
               4.    Physics:
                     --Studying       radioactivity       in the ocean,
          In 1965 there were 19 manned submersibles      operational
    in the United States.     In 1975 there were 57 submersibles
    of which 18 were operational,     and 8 habitats   which were
    all inactive.   bone of the principal   submersibles    used for .
    research is the deep submergence research vehicle         Alvin.
    It is operated by the Woods Hole Oceanographic       Institute
    under a joint   funding agreement with the Navy, the National
    Science Foundation,    and the National  Oceanic and Atmos-
    pheric Administration.       '
           We asked members of the snarine science community how
    many submersibles    and habitats   could be used and where they
    should be located    to support a national    manned undersea
    science program.     Their opinions   varied from three ‘;o nine
    submersibles   and from one to three habitats.      Opinions
    also differed    as to where these facilities    should be
               Three renorts         have bee!: issued      which     attempt      to assess
    facility        need:.
               --"Manned Underwater Platforms,"    prepared by the
                  University   of New Hampshire in October 1972,
                  showed a need for three manTIed submersibles   and
                  three habitats.
               --"Future    Facilities   Requirements  of the liniversity
                  National   Oceanography Laboratory    System,"
                  prepared by the University      of Hawaii in October
                   1974, showed a need for nine manned submersibles
                   and three habitats    by 1990.

       --"Report   on UNOLS Long-Range                   Planning Heeting"  dated
          Hay 1375, showed a need for                    two manned submersibles
          and one habitat by 1990.
        A University       Wational  Oceanographic    Laboratory        System
supported      workshop?, held at Stanford       University       in Uecember
1476 in the long-rang2           use of the Alvin., did net foresee
the need for adding another deep submersible                until      1985.
The workshop       Tarticigants     said that if the Al-Tin could not
fulfill    t,ie demand for research time, a proTDsz1                s?!ould
be made to use the Navy's submersible              "Sea Cliff"       on a part-
time basis for West Coast operations.
032ratinc       ccsts
         In most caf:es, manned submersibles        and habitats   are
expensive      to operatt    and should be used only if a high
priority     need is shown and othe: methods are not applicable.
The operating       costs of submersibles      varv according    to many
factors,     including    the complexity     and size of the facility
and the support equipment needed.             Therefore,   tn2 operating
cost of any future        submersibles    or habitats    coold not be
estimated      unless these. factors     were known.
      However, to illustrate      the cost of using these types
of facilities,   the folllowing     table on page 6 shows operating
data for 11 submersibl2s      which were operational   in 1975.
Oceanlab         -
      The National     Oceanic and Atmospheric          Administratj       I.?'s
Manned Undersea Science and Technology             Office      is planting
for the development       of a manned undersea        facility     cali.od
Oceanl'ab.   The Congress appropriated          $1.5 million        for fisca:
year 1977 to be used for surveys,           mission analyses,          cost
analyses,   and initiation      of design and engineering             for
a national   ocean laboratory.        The Mtnned Undersea Science
and Technology Office       es:imates    :hat the construction            cost
oE Oceanlab,    independent     of surface     sueport,      will  be aboct
$22 million   by 1981.
       As presentl!,!          conceived,       this    mobile      underwater     laboratory
       --operate         at deptfis     down to 2.000            feet,
       --have        lockout     capabiiizies          down to 1,000       feet,

                                       WERE OPERATIONAL       IN 1975

                                                  year              operating           Depth      .   Pilot/
ubmersible                  Operator           launched         --or lease    cost   _capabi
                                                                                         I_-  lity      crew

lvin                  Woods Hole Oceano-         1964             2/$7,5?0              12,000             3
                         graphic     Inst.
iaphus                Texas A&M                  1974                     5,200           1,200            2
ohnson Sea            Harbor     Branch          1971                     5,095           1,000            4
 Link I                  Founda t ion
ohnson Sea            Har iJor 13ranch           1971                     5,095           2,000    .       4
 Link II                 Founda t ion
ektGn Alpha           General                    1968               k/l    ,508           1,000            2
ekton      Deta       General                    1970               ;/1,700               1,000            2
ekton      Gamma      General                    1971               b/1,800               1,000            2
R-l                   U.S. Navy                  1969                 Information    unavailable           7
ea Cliff              U.S. Navy                  1968               s/3,250              6,580             3
nooper                Undersea      Graphics     1969                   2,250            1,000             2
urtle                 U.S. Navy                  lSS8               g/3,250              6,SOO             3
/ Dased on direct       costs    for 124 operating     days in 1975.
/ ?;oes not include      support     ship costs.
/ Does not include       support     ship or personnel     costs.

        --be  capable  of ooerating           in cold water--temperatures
           as low as freezing  --and          under adverse sea state
        --have    a surface     range of 1,030 nautical    miles
           an5 a submerged        range of 50 to 100 nautical    miles;
        --kave    a submerged      duration     cf   30 days,

        --be equipped with both life      support and laboratory
           facilities     and provide onboarc decompression    for
           divers,    and
        --carry     a mini-submersible  to enhance rescue capa-
           bilities    and provide observational  capabilities
           to 1,500 feet.
        The Manned Underseas Science and Technology Office      has
sponsored workshops to allow reoresentatives       of the academic,
scientific,    commercial,  industrial, and recreational   diving
comnunities    to provide mission a& design requirements      for
      We found that the marine scirnce       community generally
does not-support  Oceanlab.  Examrile:
                                 a     .I of  objections tc Oceanlab
were as follows:

        --The National        Oceani:: and Atmospheric   qdministration
           has tried     to find ocograms to fit the facility's         ca-
           pabilities      rathe z than building   a structure     to meet
           today's    existing    needs.                                          I

        --This    all-purpose,    complex vehicle     may require   many
           repairs,     thus reducing   the available    diving   days.
        --Funding      of   Cceanlab   may divert      funding   from other
       Oceanlab workshop participants       said they had little
input   in deciding    whether    or not to build Oceanlab;    the de-
cision   had aiready been made. Workshop participants            s*um-
marized their     overall   opinion of Oceanlab as follows:
        n * * * the workshop participants         unanimously       dis-
        approve of Oceanlab (deeq diving          lockcut    ve:Iicle)
        at l-___
              h;S t i:ne . Ve recognize   that a iimited        number
        cf scientists      could use the vehicle.         It is our
        opinion    that   a large Oceanlab vehicle        or habitat          t

       is not in the best interests         of the scientific
       diving   community as a whole. * * * ??e feel that we
       can net build a national       program of underwater
       research    around a few very expensive,          ponderous
       vessels or habitats.       yebile,    practical,     ruaaed
       and above all readily      available     equipment ani ve-
       hicles   are nec'essary to accomplish        stated objec-
       tives in practical     working depths."
      Certain    *barriers      and practical    limitations    restrict      zan
workina in :he sea, whether using manned undersea vehicles
or divined aquipment.           These include    cost, training      reauire-
ments, technological          limitations     of facilities    and equioment,
and physiological       limits.

     iMany ?ssearchers            stated   that manned submersibles        were
not used :.I a greater            extent   becaus  of
      --high    costs,
      --sporadic        and inadequate       funding,
      --lack      of familiarization        with   potential     con-
          tributions,      and
      --unce-tainty         as to availability          of submersibles.
       The technological      limitations       of manned submersibles
also constrain     scie:. tsts i* conducting         ocean research.
The power source , usually         batteries,     has limited    endurance:
and submergence time is dependent upon the energy used for
propulsion,    external   lighting,        and equinment rrquirements.
Some larger    submersibles      have the capacitv       to remain sub-
merged for 8 to 12 hours with constant              use of their nropul-
sion motors cr a maximum of 24 hours with mlni.;al                 us&.  -
For example, the Alvin can stay submerged from 6 to 8 hours
with constant     use of its motors.          The Navy is, currently
seeking to develop an improved power source.
       There are       phvs.mal     and technological     iimi:s  which
divers    face in       doing ocean research.         The risks and srob-
lems of diving          increase with depth.        1~ iinorove the safetv          .
more research         is needed on the interre' ,zteE effects         of ore;-
sure, breathing           gas mixtures,    and time on GZT.'C ability-to

          Divers have made routine               descents to 600 feet,           have
worked for :-hour rJeriods at depths to 1,080 feet in Arctic
waters,         and have made simulated             dry chamber dives to 2,000
feet.         Zesearch diving          from the surface,          however, is usually
linited         to deaths      of  less     than   150   feet.     At or Seyond 150
feet,       a 6i-,Tti -.=reazhing        corqressed      air is subjected        to a
condition         known as nitrogen            narcosis--the       intoxicating       effect
of breathing          nit:,yen       at higher      pressures.        Divers are unable
to think raticnzlly               and iheir      ability       to oerform simple phy-
sical       tasks may be impaired.               Substituting        other inert gases
for nitrogen          has been recognized             as a solution,        however, the
      ;m-...* P?rz?~~ar~
srA..,G,y                 \ to t I?e '35e cf these gas mixtures                has been
Lc..s.* -e:-.I,
        -.-ye. ccst cf ecui~ent- -            and the lack of training           by re-
searchers         necessary for its qroper use.                   Other factors       which
say limit         a clver
                     aa      I,3 effectiveness          under certain       conditions
zre visibility,             water temperature,           and fatigue.

       Most marine'scientists     and researchers     we contacted
said they believe      the Federal Government's      management and
administration     of undersea research has been inadequate
 in the past.    The issues most frequently       raised were the
lack   of
       --national        ocean research         goals      and objectives,
       --coordination,          and                                                                I
       --adequate        and continuous         funding.
       Federal ;Ilanned undersea research        is done primarily
by three agencies:       the National     Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration,     ctie National    Science ?oundation,      and tke
Savy . These agexiec,       are joktly     funding   the Alvin's    ooera-
tional   exsenses which total      about $1 million     annually.
       The academic community and private            industry   fulfill
important     roles in manned undersea science and technology.
The academic cszzxnity         carries   out manned undersea research
under Federal grants and contracts.              It also trains        students
in oceano3raghy,       marine science,      underwater    technology,
and scientific      diving   techniqnes.      Industry    has designed,
fabricated,      and tested most of the manned submersibles
built    in the 'Jnited States since 1959.           industry   also trains


crews     to operate           submersibles      and diving       systems,     and   trains
divers      to oerfora          various     underwater    tas!ts.

         In an attemnt        to establish       a national      manned undersea
program,       the National        Oceanic     and Atzosoheric       Administtaticc
created      the Wanned Undersea Science and Technology                      Office
in 1971      to develop,        promote,     and support      a national      civilian
ooeraticnal        caoability       for man to work under the sea to
achieve      a bett;tr    unoerstanding,         assessment,      and use of the
marine     environment        and its resources.           The Office’s       budget
nas $1.4 million          in fiscal       year lS72,     its first       year of
operation.         In fiscal       vears    1973 and 1974 the Office             orocosed
oudget     increases      of Sl$ and 512 million,             resoectively-,        for
a national        manned undersea         program.     however;       during     the bud-
get process for these 2 fiscal                  years the Office         of Xanage--
merit and Budget directed              that the objectives          be narrowed
from a national         program to a grogram supporting                  only in-house
investigations.        Consequently,    the Manned Undersea Science
and Technology's       Office   budget has been approximately      $1 mil-
lion    a year since fiscal      year 1973.   This has limited     its
ability     to support    enough research   to result  in national
leadership      in manned undersea research.
          In 1976 the Marine Board of the National        Research
Council appraised      and reported on The Manned Undersea Science
and Technology Office      program.   Its report   stated that the
principal    thrust  of the program should be one of coordina-
tion and overall     management rather    than operational    control
of research,     and that the program should
         --be national    in scope, supporting                 both civil       Federal
            and non-Federal   users:
         -provide        information         and services      on a national         basis:
         --provide       for     transfer     of research      results       and tech-
            nology;      and
         --provide  funding grants within        specific       guidelines,
            for the development,    application,       testing,      and sup-
            port of undersea activities.
 The Marine Board report      recommended     “that    NOVA [National
,Oceanic and Atmospheric      Administration]       revise the MUS&T
 [Manned Undersea Science and Technology Office]             objectives
 and issue a formal  definitive       charter    for MUSCT" to provide
 a national focus for civil       manned undersea activities.

             Hanned undersea research presently           lacks focus and
     direction.        National   goals and objectives        have not been
.    clearly     defined,    and the relative    priority      of research areas
     and projects       have not been specifically         identified   or classi-
     fied.      As a result,    there is no basis at this time for sup-
     porting     an expanded manned undersea research program.
              If the Hanned Undersea Science and Technology Office                     is
     restrudt-rod         it should be desianated       to nrovide leadershio
     and fccug ic'>anned          undersea activities      ai-recomended           by
     the Xarine 2oard.          It should also be responsible            for as-
     certaininc       the manned undersea needs of the various                Federal
     agencies involved        in these activities       and proposing,          where
     justified,       the develo?ent      and acquisition       of facilities
     to meet these needs. It should be a national                 focal point for
     manned undersea activities           to coordinate     and manage the use
     of manned submersibles           and habitats,    and to provide         informa-
     tion to the user community on current              and planned research
     projects,      research    results,    and technological       developments.
           Until  the overali   goals and objectives    for manned under-
      sea research are identified,    it would be difficult    to estab-
      lish the level of funding or new facilities      needed to sup- .
    . port the program.

            As requested   by your office,  we did not obtain official
     Departrent     of Commerce comments.    We discussed    the report
     with Manned Undersea Science and Technology Office            officials
     whose comments are shown in appendix III.           They agree with our
     position    regarding  the need for plans and programs,         and s;lp-
     pert    our basic premise that such e fforts     are necessary
     for any program activity.       They noted, however, that the
     Xational    Oceanic and Atmos?hetic   Administration,      t.Frcagh
     its Xannad Undo: sea Science and Techhnology Office,            has de-
     veloped 2v5'1 the last several years, comprehensive           and sub-
     stantial    regiona.! manned.undersea   research Grograms on a
     continclng    basis.   We found, however, that because of budget

restrictions       the Nanned Undersea Science and Technology
Office     efforts    have beer. directed at supporting     only in-house
investigations        and do not provide a national     focal point
for these activities.

                                     Coniptroller   General
                                     of the rlnited   States
APPENDIX     I                                                                                 APPENDIX   I

           Mr. zlner 3. staats
           caqtroller  OelCral
           Gezeral Accountfig Office
           Room 7000
           hhl G Street N Y
           Tashinetsr,        kc.   * '205bo
           DearMr. staats:
           During the past year,1 have become interested      in this la~ion’s    capbflftftc
           to conduct undersea science and technology progmas.         In researching
           these issues, I soon learned    that techniques  to vork and live in +Ae
           oceans ha+c progressed    very slovly  except vhere related   ta offshore   oil
           explor:tion and recovery.
           Undemea        science
                                vas started    ir esrnest some 25 years ago uhen nariae-
           biologists     made s%wt and shellov forays into the sea ptiag simple
           diving   gear.   Since thecE and l specie3ly vithin the past i5 years some
           techuiques have been develop3           to allov man to vcrk aore cf?e,ctiwly
           ir. the sea. 3eseaxh submersibles.            maoned habitats,   ixpzcved diviing
           eqtislent and tablea have added new dimensions in undemater                  science.
           =Cr4kg the 59’0,a     submersible     reached the deepest parts of the ocesn
           a=d di-mrs uere sakfag       ieeger   forays    for longer working timzs . -Xan,
           a: this point, uas truly en the verge of making great atri3es under tke
           :cezs, ;rdsi=lg       ta i;i-AS asAne research -y4uarAl nev 2x1s for szxdy.
           - .- xc ~5 of the 60's. ho=ever, iztercst iL usderse?. ur&orstiar. z3k
           rasrar:!: Segea to -vane. kcreased costs, nationtide eczczic p6cleu
           aA -,oor &wing        nest l%ely contributed to the diz&aisZzg ir;te-2%.
           Lr-eb , Xg!a-budget,    o-e-?lrxe   uxdervater progrms vfth . 1 tolls-ug
           were equally responsible for the denim of rmdernter                research.

           Asker         rosson.               for t!ae decreased ~taresz
                                    i=. xy cpizion,                          ia usderses
           ;rogrzs        s=d perhags xstixgortxd2.y is the failure    of tke U.S. govermem
           23 tid       ‘.&se ?sgraus at a level that could prodcc reasonable       ad-mn~~
           it ‘.e,t=iyzes se scitnc+.      Tc,e result has been a scatterinq of goor
           zbdtd axi akhistcred        programs ticapable of co*cz~        seaning?ll
           resti- - s .
           3e Y.S. gTeZC1" -I s total                 budget for undersea l xglorazfon   and research
    APPEh'DIX         I                                                                                APPENDIX   I

            PaKe tuo
            i&a, zlner staats
            July 7, 1976

            has bee2          hVd
                            ruEded   ior the Fast s-e years at aboG 1 siilf~2
            dollars,       thou& the ~vez?zaLl.federal b&get fcr the ocef~s has
            Lzcreased co3siCerakl; 07er the 32x8 xricf.     c"; ;ov 1*-p: 0:‘ f.;=tpg
            was too smaii co sqpax? a national undersea propan of any signfiicmce.
            Presently, there are no zmnned habitats aperat-     on a f'ul.l-t&c progran
            and only a feu rescax2 skzersi'-,ies hwe i&t Zzm the norc tha= tkir:y
            bElit  in the =id 65'~-.
            Obvio~,    there are reasc2.s tcr '.-ps *crease E. Q-+-t-e
                                                                   .--     235 ‘.: .zc*r-
            vater scfence . I EELanxio-as to address these rcasozs to Ccterzke if
            undervater science should continue and f,' so, a: -vhat level 0: actitiitp
            and funelg azd u5uc ft vould Iit t= CI dual?.     WZisnd.    OC?er?. prOE;ra=l-

            I, tsereforc, reqacst a study by GAOa3 tLe problems of uzrdersea science
            and tec?wlogy in the past, what It has achieved OY not achieved and
            where it-go     franhere.    i vill be happy to assign 3ob WickLand, of Y
            staff, to assist you fo ally v8y duri!q your study.
            The folhving  questions are offered hem as a preliminary @de to the
            information I a~ seeking OILthe issue of mersea science and technology:
                (1) Does the U.S. need a sunned lmdersu                science and technology progrsn?
            12) Doer manned undersea scrcienceand tecbnologlf fit                    tithin   the overall
            gods of the wdion*s reseuch imeds?
            (3) Are the MtiOn'S   n+edt great enough to UarrWlt a.72acceleration                           in
                (4) If so the% to what extent should such aprop?a~ be carried                       out?
            (5) Has past vork in zanned undersea                 prcgrams been cohesive to the
            DB'iOE'S overax ocean programs?
            (6) Ehat types of science are best              suite&tobe         con&acted by naancd
            undersea program?
            (7) Xaz are preseat Fatiical   1,:-4Lattfons
                                                  -      oc zaz working in tke
            sea ( desh. tins, teaperaz-ze. gsses, etc.)"
                (8) *&at are the reasoz~ Tar these Xzitatfons?
                (9)   hihat   lbfozmation   needs to   be knov    to   u;end    !h   iidtattions?
APPENDIX       I                                                                                                     APPSNDTX I

           (Xl&W       do these    lbitacions     aff'fec:            the  cepabtities              of    ‘undersea
           tc:hicpes      to   become    viable tools           of     science?
           (11) S%at role shouid the acadaric                        cormxdty        play iz~ a national
           uniervater program?
           (12) Wat role should industry                     play in 4 national                underwater pro-am?
           (12) Eas the federal government's treatzutt and hainistration                                            of
           undc-uater reseszch beck adequate io the wt?
           (YL) k?xy has federal         fundi-         of    undewater rtnearch program been
           so lov in the past?
           (15) Thy has the sciertific                 cmnunity             been generally          unei~zfititiastic
           about unde,rmater science?
           (161 Hhat have been the outstanding                        problems vith uzArwater                   programs
           in tbe past?
           (17) uhat should be the facility  priorities of a national uadervater
           grogram ( habitats, submersibles, decompression chambas. etc.)2
           (18) Uhat type of habitat system uould k most effective (i.e. large
           central fixed,mobile,   highly mobile such as submrine-h8bitBt *
           regional semi-aobile,  etc. )?
           (19)  3 the present supply             of     submersibles adequate                      to support c
            26t:onal prograz?
           (20)    Zou zacy    sabaezsibles       are ntcersaz,-p              to   a rrational          peogra~?

           (21; ;Zat shoti         be   the capsbilities               of the suDEenibles?

           T'b?zk yco    for   yaw cmsideration                of    this      request.

                                                                       S, zerea,

                                                                       Lowell       Ueicser.        k
                                                                       United State5G&rSe                 --
    APPENDIX II                                                                 APPENDIX II
                      Questions     to be Addressed           by G.A.O.       on
                               Manned Undersea            Scierce
    Definitioc:          Undersea    Science      - the utllitatioc  of zenned
                                                    undersea equipment an5 tech-
                                                    niques to conduct underwater
     1.     What types of science are best                  suited       to be conducted         by
            manned undersea programs?
     2.     What are the present practical  limitations      on man working
            in the sea (depth, time, temperature,      gases, etc.)?
     3.     What are the reasons           for    these     limitations?
     4.     What information    needs to be known to extend these limits?
     5.     How do these limitations    affect   the capabilities  of under-
            sea techniques  to become viable     tools of science?
     6.     How do industry         and the academic community                 contribute        to
            national  efforts        in undersea science?
     7.     Assuming that the MIS&T Office  will  be restructured, what
            function should it perform in order to best serve NOAA
            and the marine scientific  community?
     a.     How many habitats and submersibles   could be supported   by
            the scientific community on a regional    basis, assuming
            that cost was not a factor?
     9.     What would be the average              dost     of operation           of these    sub-
            mersibles and habitats?
    10.     Why has the MUS&T Office              hen      level     funded    fcr    the past
            several years?
    11.     Has the federal   government's               treatment  and administra-
            tion of underwater    research              been adequate in the past?
    12.     Why h-as the scientific  comaunity been generally                          unen-
.           thusiastic  about underwater  science?

    Note:         Furnished   by Senator       Weicker's       office.
APPENDIX     III                                                                                       APPENDIX               111

                                                             UNITED       STATES       DEPARTMENT          OF COMMERCE
                                                             National     Oceanic      and Atmospheric       AdnS’ais’xation
                                                            ROCkv~lle. Mat-ylanll   20852

           :!r . ba:zond X. Sautala
           &sis:ant     Director, HAD/ST
           General Accounting     Office
           Room 6905
           $41 G Scree:.     S?C
                . .)W          D.C. 20516
           Dear 3.       %u:ala:

           I appre:ia:e       very muc> th: opportunity           vhich uy ?lansed Cndersea
           Science     and Technology (?R'SbT) staff           end I had last veek to reviev
            lith you the GAO draft         discussion     paper on manned undersea          research
           prepared      in response    to the August 1976 request             from Senator Ueicker.
           Your invitation        to provide     you vith    a swsuary of some of the points
           which ve ‘addressed       during    our discussions         is also appreciated.        While
           this   letter    does not represent        an officially       staffed   response    from
           NM& you map, of course,             use such portions         as you wish as representing
           the conversations        which ue had.

           As ve indicated,         there are a few clariflcatious            vc would like tc
           offer    vith   respect      to parts of the report.       particularly       areas                            e            .
           relating      to the relative        costs of submerslblea.          For this purpose,
           I have attached         hereto    a marked up copy of your draft           report   with
           these suggestious.              .                                                                         :
           Although      the   report      addresses      mauned undersea            activities         gener&hy.
           I believe       that those areas addressing                  or alluding         to Oceanlab requi‘re
           camtent      since your vievs on this facility                     appear to be representative
           of your assessment of our program.                        For example,          oa both pages 3 and
           10, it is stated or implied                that the XIX&T office                 proposed        Oceanlab
           in order to provide             a national       focus for undersea              research.         I think         .
           you vould agree that an advanced                     technology       development          represented                 _-
           by Oceanlab would,            indeed,     provide       a national        focus for undersea
           activity      and would also seme to increase                      the undersea           research
           :apability        of the Coited        States.         I mst      point     out, houevz.           that the
           conceptual        and other docunencs            for Oceanlab,          as vail      as for tbr under-
           sea ac:ivities         that would be conducted                 coincident         to it.     vere prepared
           by SO&% in response             to specific        request      by Senator         Ueickcr       and by
           Congressman        Alexander.         You knov, I am certain,                 that    the spark vas
           generated       when NOIU had to utilize                the Geman underuater                 laboratory        -
           ‘%clgoland      , ” highlightinp        the fact that the Unitd States                         lacked    the
           necessary       advanced      technology       facili-         for conducting           the planned
           effort     in the rather          severe ocean environment                of the northern
           C.S. latitudes.

APPENDIX     III                                                                                           APPENDIX             III

      With respect          to the couunents in the draft                     regarding        plans and programs.
      I support       your basic premise               and note that such efforts                    are, indeed,
      necessary       for any program activity                   ubether.it          be oceans or othervfse.
      i must note,         houever,        chat X0&i, through               its XGSbT office,             has over
      the last      several      years developed               comprehensive          and xbstantial            manned
      uodersea      research       and regional            prograns       on a continuing            basis.      These
      programs      have incorporated              the use of all available                    underwater
      facilities        and *have fostered             the full      utiliaatiou            of small habitats.
      It has been our aim, through                     NOAA’s use of these facilities                       as well as
      by encouragemnt            of interaliency             and other         coordinated        use. to progress
      toward the izxreased               capabilities           vhich vould be needed as C.S. ocean
      interests       moved into northern                latitudes.           As you knou. ue do remain of
      the opinion         that.    with     the increasing            U.S. interests vith                respect    to
      understanding           and utilizing          the oceans - particularly                    in turbid,
      cold,      and polluted        vaters,       ve must reduce reliance                    on surface      support
      and insure        that the U.S. has the year-round                          capabilities         for all-veathcr
      manned undersea           activities         in the 1980’s and beyond.

        It vould not be wrong to state                  that without         the programs       vhich XOAA
       has been able to mount in the diving                      artes.      the civfU.an       marine
        community      vould not be as capable               as it is today in mounting                 science
        programs      requiring       safe saturation diving.               Continuing       activities         in
        support     of science        programs     vhich require         diving    and of programs            LO
        improve     diver     capabilities        and safety       are an integral         part of the
        total    program      of which the development              of the Oceanlab mobilt               under-
       vater     laboratory       ia a part.         Iha Oceanlab        facility      and the diver
        support     programs      for the manned wdtrsea                support    vork integral           to it.
      ‘reprrrent        a unique      oppcrtunity       to provide       a national       focus and stimulus
        to ocean scienct          and engineering          through      mannetj undersea activitigs.

       As indicated         earlier,       T! agree     vith  you on the need for plans to set
       out overall      protrams     and managzmant             system       for the operation             and use
       of the facility.          Programs  addressing              current       national     intertsts          and
       concerns    have been compiled              over the past par              as the rationale              for
       an advanced       technology       facility       haa betn rtfined.               Analyses      of
       scientific      field    programs        conducted       during     the last       few pears have
       also been helpful          in this regard.             Increasing         U.S. Involvement             in
       tht ocean in the next 5 years v-ill bring us to new requirements                                         vhich
       ve cannot see vtry clearly                 mu.      Even so. a nev ttchaology                  facility
       such as the mobile           undtrvater        habitat      vi11 bt a valuable             addition          to
       national    ocean capabilities              on tht basis         of our current          assessment            of   -'         .
       needs.     At the same the,             hovever,       it would be useful             to reexamine
       national     program interasts,             not only vithin           XOAA Sue b%thin            the entire
       Federal    structure       and in the academic and industrial                        comrnmi:ies           also.
       to set forth        a reasonable         program projection             in anticipation            of

APPENDIX       III                                                                        APPENDIX    III

      an Oceanlab  faciliry.     I believe      that the development       of such I plan
      should be coincident   vith    the construction       of the facility,         rccogniting
      :hat the construction    process     leading    to operational     utilization
      may take up to 5 years or so.

      AS you know, the new technology          facility    would be used io a cooperative
      manner,  not only by SO&          but also by all icteres:ed            Federal     agencies,
      the academic    community    and private      and industrial       organizations.          It
      vould be centrally     managed by NOAA and would serve admirably                    as a
      unique and advanced      center    for suppor:ing     and focusing        attention      on
      manned undersea    research     in all oceao issues          of national      interest.


      Steven         tT’. Anastasfoa
      Director,          Office    of Ocean tigineerfng