About the Laboratory
The Seafloor Samples Laboratory of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is located in the McLean Laboratory on WHOI’s Quissett Campus. The collection contains more than 14,000 archived marine geological samples that have been carefully recovered from the seabed. The inventory includes long, stratified sediment cores, rock dredges, coral cores, surface grabs and samples collected by submersibles.
The archive facility was established more than thirty years ago by members of the Geology and Geophysics department led by Dr. Dave A. Johnson, but contains material from the earliest days of WHOI’s seagoing sampling programs. The extent of the collection is global and the 100’s of tons of material that are currently archived at McLean have allowed scientists from diverse disciplines to undertake research on topics as varied as plate techtonics, climate change, mass extinctions, and the processes that lead to the evolution of chemosynthetic communities.