That’s a wrap!

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Well folks, we have come to the end of our turret season! Two and a half months of hot, humid, intense, occasionally slightly dangerous work culminated in the final tank filling on July 14th.

Happiness is. . .being done with installing the new anode rig!
Happiness is. . .being done with installing the new anode rig!

Throughout the eleven weeks of turret work the whole crew of the USS Monitor Center pulled together to accomplish something great. We removed all 21 of the remaining nutguards and nutguard fragments from the interior of the turret, a feat in and of itself. A few small artifacts were discovered in the concretion behind the nutguards. All together, including the nutguard pieces we accessioned 110 new artifacts. We also installed a brand new anode rig that will make the electrolytic reduction of the turret more efficient and should speed up salt extraction.

Newly installed anode rig.
Newly installed anode rig.

While all of this conservation work was occurring, we were also giving lab tours! Just over 390 people came through the lab, 247 of them got up close and personal with the turret. Our visitors included representatives from over 38 companies and 12 institutions.

Hundreds of photographs were taken by the staff and volunteers during the turret season. 1587 of those were specifically for use in a photogrammetry program to create a 3D model of the turret. We’re hoping to show it off soon! The turret was also laser scanned while the tank was drained. Over the course of three days approximately 30 full scans were taken. When an object is being laser scanned tens of thousands of points are taken as measurements every three seconds.

And on that final day when we filled up the turret tank for the last time this year, we added one hundred and fifty 50lbs bags of sodium hydroxide to prepare the correct solution for the turret to live in until next year.

150 bags of sodium hydroxide ready to go!
150 bags of sodium hydroxide ready to go!

We’re now taking a few weeks to focus on smaller projects then we will be out to work in the Tank Farm!

More adventures coming soon!

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