January 20, 2014 Slideshow

Postdoctoral researcher Ileana Pérez-Rodríguez (right) scrapes a sample from a piece of vent structure recovered by Jason, as Craig Taylor (left) and Leonid Germanovich watch. Although we didn’t realize it at the time, this recovery would be the last batch of samples collected on this expedition.

Marine chemist Nadine Le Bris takes a closer look at the inside of the vent structure, which is honeycombed with loosely connected holes.

Shortly after bringing samples to the surface, Jason’s crew re-deploys the ROV for its final dive of the expedition.

Donato Giovannelli (left) and Miri Sollich (right) watch the final Jason deployment on the deck below.

Shortly after Captain Allan Lunt declares a medical emergency, Craig Taylor (left) and Leonid Germanovich (right) sit on the mess deck, trading stories about past experiences at sea.

Erwan Peru looks out over the Pacific Ocean while Atlantis heads toward Acapulco, Mexico, still more than two days away. The waves may not look big, but the faster the ship moves through them, the more it bucks up and down.

Rough spray kicks up off the side of the ship as it breaks through the oncoming waves en route to Acapulco.

Ruby Ponnudarai drafts an email to friends and family the morning after the emergency was announced.

The ping-pong table in the ship’s main lab, a former hotspot of activity, has gone quiet. Next to an unused paddle, a mesh bag full of decorated styrofoam cups (which many of the scientists had planned to send to the bottom with the next elevator) sits untouched as well.

With the mountains of Acapulco in the background, a Mexican coastal rescue boat speeds out to meet the Atlantis. The craft will take our ailing crew member to a hospital on shore.

Researchers gather to watch as a Mexican coastal rescue boat pulls alongside the ship.

Many of these signs hang on doors around the ship—a constant reminder that accidents can and do happen at sea.


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