Additional information on Chikyu's New World Drilling-Depth Record of Scientific Ocean Drilling

Press Release
For Immediate Release
10 September 2012

Off Hachinohe, Japan- Chikyu, the state-of-the-art scientific research vessel, which broke the previous record for deepest drilling depth (2,111 meters) of scientific ocean drilling on 6 September, 2012, continues its operations and has successfully drilled 2,466 m below seafloor on 9 September 2012. The water depth of Site (Site C0020) is 1,180 meters below sea-level. The science party obtained core samples from 2,466 m below seafloor on Sunday. These sample materials are taken from a deeply buried coal formation for the purpose of investigating co-evolution of Earth and Life, among other scientific objectives.

This most recent accomplishment represents the deepest borehole that Chikyu attempted to drill during the current expedition, IODP Expedition 337 Deep Coalbed Biosphere off Shimokita. The Expedition will continue until the end of September, but the drilling of additional deep boreholes is not planned for the remaining period, according to the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) ‘s press release issued on 10 September, 2012.

“The world is witnessing what the deep riser drilling can bring about and this is only a beginning for Chikyu for journeys into the unknown depths of 5, 10 km and beyond“ Kiyoshi Suyehiro, the President and C.E.O., IODP-MI, Central Management Organization of IODP, says.

The next scientific cruise aboard Chikyu, IODP Expedition 338 Nankai Trough Seismogenic Zone Experiment, is scheduled to start from 1 October 2012. That Expedition will also attempt to deepen a borehole to 3,600 meters below seafloor to investigate deep tectonic process involved in seismogenesis. Chikyu scientists hail from any of the 26 IODP member countries, with each science party being assembled to fulfill the multi-disciplinary expertise required to achieve the scientific objectives.

Useful websites:

To read an original press release issued on 6 September, visit:
Chikyu Sets a New World Drilling-Depth Record of Scientific Ocean Drilling

For more information about the current expedition, Expedition 337, visit:

Chikyu TV, the special website, will open at the end of this month for reporting the latest news, achievements and blogs about the Nankai Trough Seismogenic Zone Experiment, visit:

For more information about IODP, visit:

About IODP

The current scientific ocean drilling program, the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP), is an international research program dedicated to advancing scientific understanding of the Earth through drilling, coring, and monitoring the subseafloor. The JOIDES Resolution is a scientific research vessel managed by the US Implementing Organization of IODP (USIO). CHIKYU is a scientific drilling vessel operated by JAMSTEC/CDEX (Japan), and mission-specific platforms are supplied by ECORD (the European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling). IODP is supported by two lead agencies: the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT). Additional program support comes from ECORD, the Australian-New Zealand IODP Consortium (ANZIC), India's Ministry of Earth Sciences, the People's Republic of China (Ministry of Science and Technology), the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, and Coordination for Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES) in Brazil.

Media Contacts

Miyuki Otomo
IODP Management International, Inc. (IODP-MI), Tokyo, Japan
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Tel: +81-3-6701-3188

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