DPS got to go 'round

This quilt calls attention to the importance of the Dynamic Positioning System (DPS) of JOIDES Resolution, a feature that is critical to the ability to drill and recover deep sea sediment and rock cores while remaining stationary over a drill site. Although there are many components of DPS, the thrusters and ship propellers are essential in keeping the ship in position. Shown here are the thruster pods and propellers, composed of a brass alloy, and positioned under the red-colored ship's hull.

Quilt measures 39 inches wide by 59 inches tall and was completed August 18, 2023.

Quilt pays tribute to the role of the thrusters and propellers that keep JOIDES Resolution in position for its drilling activities.

Dynamic positioning allows vessels at sea to remain in position through utilization of thrusters and propellers. JOIDES Resolution relies on its six thruster pods and two ship propellers to hold its position during deep-sea drilling activities. Although there are several additional inputs necessary for the dynamic positioning system (DPS) to fully function (wind speed/current, GPS position, data from the motion reference units (MRUs), the orientation of the two ship rudders, etc.), this quilt pays tribute to those DPS parts that “go ’round”.

Cross section of a drill ship with thrusters highlighted

Image showing the location of the 12 thrusters on JOIDES Resolution. Existing as pairs, or pods, all are retractable except for the pod under the fantail. Image from IODP JRSO.

Here are some photos of the actual thrusters and ship propellers from when JOIDES Resolution was in Amsterdam Dry Dock (EXP 384P) in 2020. (Photos provided by Jennifer Hertzberg, IODP/JRSO DAM Administrator)

The yellow/gold colors represent the brass alloy of which the propellers are composed. The thruster blades are paired to represent the thruster pods as they exist on the ship, and they are stitched on to red fabric to represent the red color of the ship’s hull. The red fabric for the hull is a Da Gama Textile (Three Cats Shweshwe) manufactured in South Africa, where the ship departed from/returned to for my time at sea during Expedition 390. The blue spiral metallic fabric represents the motion of the water when the thrusters are rotating and is a Blank Quilting fabric. The Longarm quilting services were provided by The Old Country Store Fabrics in Intercourse, PA.

Quilt measures 59 inches tall by 39 inches wide and was completed on August 18, 2023.

If you are interested in a full description of the dynamic positioning system on JOIDES Resolution, I encourage you to check out the blog post on Dynamic Positioning from Expedition 395’s Onboard Outreach Officer Jennifer Field.

Image of sign from the JR discussing the propulsion system

Photo taken on JOIDES Resolution of a sign describing ship propulsion