AUVs sensed a cylindrical object beneath the seafloor that archaeologists initially believed to be a cannon.

Using sidescan sonar, AUVs captured this image of a cylindrical object on the sea floor that looks similar to a cannon. On closer inspection, however, researchers realized that it lacked the characteristic features which are evident on a cannon from the HMS Cerberus site. Both the Cerberus and Lark were burned and sunk to avoid capture. The Lark’s onboard supply of gunpowder exploded, destroying the frigate and creating a large debris field. This is an example of why it’s important for archaeologists to closely examine each object to establish their context in time and space in order to interpret past events. Images Courtesy of the AUVfest 2008: Partnership Runs Deep, Navy/NOAA,

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AUVfest 2008

AUVfest 2008: May 18 Log

NOAA Ocean Explorer Gallery