Another option for ocean drilling



After reviewing long-range plans for crustal studies, a National Science Foundation (NSF) advisory group unanimously agreed that the most economic and favorable platform for scientific ocean drilling would be neither the Glomar Explorer nor the Glomar Challenger. The group's choice: to lease a commercial drilling ship.

Unlike previous groups, the NSF Ad Hoc Advisory Group on Crustal Studies, chaired by AGU President-elect Charles Drake, examined ocean drilling while considering other crustal studies and budget projections. The Conference on Scientific Ocean Drilling (COSOD) (Eos, December 22, 1981, p. 1197), the National Science Board (Eos, April 6, 1982, p. 219), and a National Research Council committee (Eos, November 2, 1982, p. 835) all chose the Glomar Explorer as the desired option; however, they weighed alternatives based only on the scientific merits of drilling and did not look at crustal studies as a whole or look at budget projections.