The Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) was an international cooperative effort to explore and study the composition and structure of the Earth's ocean basins. ODP, which began in 1985, was the direct successor to the highly successful Deep Sea Drilling Project initiated in 1968 by the United States. ODP was a truly international effort with contributions of Australia, Germany, France, Japan, the United Kingdom and the ESF Consortium for Ocean Drilling (ECOD) including 12 further countries. The program used the drillship Joides Resolution (JOIDES=Joint Oceanographic Institutions for Deep Earth Sampling) on 110 expeditions (Legs) to collect about 2000 deep sea cores from major geological features located in the ocean basins of the world. Drilling discoveries led to further questions and hypotheses, as well as to new disciplines in earth sciences such as the field of paleoceanography. In 2004 ODP transformed into the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP).
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