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SBE 17plus V2 Searam Recorder & Auto Fire Module

Auxiliary equipment for use with SBE 9plus CTD and SBE 32 Carousel Water Sampler, allowing for autonomous operation without conducting winch cable.

The SBE 17plus V2 Searam provides power to and saves data from the SBE 9plus CTD (and integrated auxiliary sensors), without the need for conducting winch cable. The Searam includes Auto-Fire capability: when integrated with an SBE 32 Carousel Water Sampler, users can collect water samples at pre-programmed depths and record 9plus CTD data with one autonomous system. The Searam is typically installed in the CTD cage with the 9plus CTD; other mounting options are possible for Compact Carousels (SBE 32C) or custom applications.

The Searam’s auto-fire feature monitors pressure data transmitted by the 9plus in real-time, fires bottles on upcast at pre-defined pressures (depths), and records a firing confirmation for each bottle fired.

Each time the Searam is switched on by pushing in the magnetic switch, a file header containing date, time, and cast number is written to memory. The Searam’s memory can record full-rate CTD and 8-channel auxiliary sensor data (24 scans/sec) for approximately 6 hours. When desired, the data is uploaded to a computer. Sea-Bird software converts the raw CTD data and bottle fire confirmations and creates a CTD data file and a bottle data file.


  • Auxiliary equipment for use with SBE 9plus CTD and SBE 32 Carousel Water Sampler, allowing for autonomous operation without conducting winch cable:
    - Memory and power module for 9plus; CTD data uploaded upon recovery.
    - Auto-fire module, allowing Carousel to collect samples on upcast at pre-programmed depths (for up to 24 bottles).
  • D-size batteries (NiMH or alkaline) to power 9plus and Carousel; memory for 9plus data (including auxiliary sensors) and bottle firing confirmation.
  • Seasoft© V2 Windows software package (setup, data upload, and data processing).
  • Depths to 10,500 m.
  • Five-year limited warranty.


  • 6800 m aluminum housing, or 7000 or 10,500 m titanium housing.
  • XSG or wet-pluggable MCBH connectors.
  • AC-powered junction box (can provide external power to Searam, permitting setup and data upload without use of battery capacity).
Memory 16 Mbyte non-volatile FLASH RAM; records all data from 9plus, plus bottle firing confirmations. Approximately 6 hours of memory endurance when storing data at 24 Hz for 9plus with 8 voltage auxiliary sensors.
Power Supply & Endurance Rechargeable, 12-cell NiMH battery pack (battery pack and charger included); approximately 10 hours of operation for 9plus with no auxiliary sensors, or 7 hours for 9plus with auxiliary sensors.
12 alkaline D-size batteries (Duracell MN1300, LR20); approximately 12 hours of operation for 9plus with no auxiliary sensors.
Real-Time Clock Watch-crystal type 32,768 Hz
Carousel Compatibility Can close up to 24 bottles. If using with 36-bottle Carousel, can only close 24 bottles.
Housing, Depth Rating, & Weight 7075-T6 anodized Aluminum (with zinc anode protection): 6800 m; 9.0 kg in air, 4.5 kg in water
Titanium: 7000 or 10500 m



The list below includes (as applicable) the current product brochure, manual, and quick guide; software manual(s); and application notes.

For older SBE 17plus V2 product manuals, organized by instrument firmware version, click here.

Title Type Publication Date PDF File
SBE 17plus V2 Datasheet Product Datasheet Monday, May 16, 2016 PDF icon 17plusV2brochureMay16.pdf
SBE 9plus Manual Product Manual Monday, February 9, 2015 PDF icon 9plus_018.pdf
SBE 17plus V2 Manual Product Manual Monday, May 16, 2016 PDF icon 17plus_014.pdf
NiMH Battery Pack and Charger Manual Product Manual Wednesday, June 29, 2016 PDF icon NiMH_006.pdf
SBE Data Processing Manual Software Manual Friday, December 8, 2017 PDF icon SBEDataProcessing_7.26.7.pdf
SBE 17plus V2 Quick Guide Product Quick Guide Thursday, May 24, 2012 PDF icon 17plus_ReferenceSheet_004.pdf
AN21: Instructions for Use of Nickel-Cadmium Battery Packs Application Notes Saturday, February 13, 2010 PDF icon appnote21Feb10.pdf
AN43: Universal Ni-Cad Battery Charger Operating Instructions Application Notes Friday, January 13, 1995 PDF icon appnote43.pdf
AN57: Connector Care and Cable Installation Application Notes Tuesday, May 13, 2014 PDF icon appnote57Jan14.pdf
AN68: Using USB Ports to Communicate with Sea-Bird Instruments Application Notes Friday, October 19, 2012 PDF icon appnote68Oct12.pdf
AN71: Desiccant Use and Regeneration (drying) Application Notes Wednesday, May 18, 2016 PDF icon Appnote71May16.pdf
Field Service Bulletin 13: Jackscrew Replacements Field Service Bulletins Monday, March 8, 2010 PDF icon FSB13.pdf
Field Service Bulletin 6: SBE 9plus CTD Retrofit for Use with Alkaline-Powered Searam Field Service Bulletins Monday, March 8, 2010 PDF icon FSB6.pdf
SeatermAF© is a terminal program for setup and data upload of Sea-Bird instruments that include Auto-Fire capability for operating a water sampler autonomously on non-conducting cable. SeatermAF is part of our Seasoft V2 software suite.
Version 2.14 released September 17, 2013
File SeatermAF_V2_1_4.exe for Windows 7/8/10

SBE Data Processing© consists of modular, menu-driven routines for converting, editing, processing, and plotting of oceanographic data acquired with Sea-Bird profiling CTDs, thermosalinographs, and the SBE 16 and 37 families of moored CTDs. SBE Data Processing is part of our Seasoft V2 software suite.
Version 7.26.7 released July 26, 2017

Please Note:

Seasoft V2 is a single install bundle with the following stand-alone programs (table below) for use with most of our products (especially SBE numbers products like SBE 37 MicroCATs). While most of our instruments uses one or more of these programs, not all instruments use all programs (eg.  Plot39 which is only used by SBE 39 family) .

Each instrument has the list of applicable programs under the product page's software tab. Each software includes Help files with detailed descriptions for use.

Version 2.2.7 released July 26, 2017
File SeasoftV2.2.7-b19.exe for Windows 7/8/10

Do I need to remove batteries before shipping my instrument for a deployment or to Sea-Bird?

Alkaline batteries can be shipped installed in the instrument. See Shipping Batteries for information on shipping instruments with Lithium or Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) batteries.

What are the recommended practices for connectors - mating and unmating, cleaning corrosion, and replacing?

Mating and Unmating Connectors:

It is important to prepare and mate connectors correctly, both in terms of the costs to repair them and to preserve data quality. Leaking connectors cause noisy data and even potential system shutdowns. Application Note 57: Connector Care and Cable Installation describes the proper care and installation of connectors for Sea-Bird instruments. The Application Note covers connector cleaning and cable or dummy plug installation, locking sleeve installation, and cold weather tips.

Checking for Leakage and Cleaning Corrosion on Connectors:

If there has been leakage, it will show up as green-colored corrosion product. Performing the following steps can usually reverse the effect of the leak:

  1. Thoroughly clean the connector with water, followed by alcohol.
  2. Give the connector surfaces a light coating of silicon grease.

Re-mate the connectors properly — see Application Note 57: Connector Care and Cable Installation and 9-minute video covering O-ring, connector, and cable maintenance.

Replacing Connectors:

  • The main concern when replacing a bulkhead connector is that the o-rings on the connector and end cap must be prepared and installed correctly; if they are not, the instrument will flood. See the question below for general procedure on handling o-rings.
  • Use a thread-locking compound on the connector threads to prevent the new connector from loosening, which could also lead to flooding.
  • If the cell guard must be removed to open the instrument, take extra care not to break the glass conductivity cell.

What are the recommended practices for inspecting, cleaning, and replacing o-rings?

Inspecting and Cleaning O-Rings and Mating Surfaces:

  1. Remove any water from the o-rings and mating surfaces with a lint-free cloth or tissue.
  2. Visually inspect the o-rings and mating surfaces for dirt, nicks, cuts, scratches, lint, hair, and any signs of corrosion; these could cause the seal to fail. Clean the surfaces, and clean or replace the o-rings as necessary.
  3. Apply a light, even coat of 100% silicon o-ring lubricant (Parker Super O Lube) to the o-rings and mating surfaces. For an end cap o-ring, a ball of lubricant the size of a pea is about all that is needed. Too much lubricant can cause the seal to fail as much, if not more, than no grease. Do not use petroleum-based lubricant (car grease, Vaseline, etc.), as it will cause premature failure of the rubber.
    CAUTION: Parker makes another product, Parker O Lube, that is petroleum-based. Do not use this product; verify that you are using Parker Super O Lube.
  4. After lubricating the o-ring, immediately reassemble the end cap or connector, verifying that no hairs or lint have collected on the lubricated o-ring.

Replacing O-Rings:

  • End Cap O-Rings: We recommend scheduled replacement of end cap o-rings approximately every 3 years, to prevent leaks caused by normal o-ring wear.
  • Connector O-Rings: Replacing connector o-rings requires de-soldering and re-soldering the connector wires, which makes it a more difficult task. Therefore, we recommend replacement of connector o-rings when needed, not on a routine, scheduled basis.

Additional Information:

  • 9-minute video covering O-ring, connector, and cable maintenance.
  • Short, silent video of application of lubricant to o-ring.
  • Short, silent video of application of lubricant to o-ring mating surface (note the use of a plastic dental syringe — no sharp points to scratch the housing — to apply the lubricant).

How do instruments handle external power if internal batteries are installed?

Most Sea-Bird instruments that are designed to be powered internally or externally incorporate diode or'd circuitry, allowing only the voltage that has the greater potential to power the instrument. You can power the instrument externally without running down the internal batteries. This allows you to lab test using external power that has higher voltage than the internal batteries, and then deploy using internal power, knowing that the internal batteries are fresh.

For the SBE 25plus, if external power of 14 volts or higher is applied, the 25plus runs off of the external power, even if the main battery voltage is higher.

Do you recommend a particular brand of alkaline D-cell batteries?

For Sea-Bird instruments that use alkaline D-cells, Sea-Bird uses Duracell MN 1300, LR20. While rare, we have seen a few problems with cheaper batteries over the years: they are more likely to leak, may vary in size (leading to loose batteries causing a bad power connection), and may not last as long.

What is the function of the zinc anode on some instruments?

A zinc anode attracts corrosion and prevents aluminum from corroding until all the zinc is eaten up. Sea-Bird uses zinc anodes on an instrument if it has an aluminum housing and/or end cap. Instruments with titanium or plastic housings and end caps (for example, SBE 37 MicroCAT) do not require an anode.

Check the anode(s) periodically to verify that it is securely fastened and has not been eaten away.

Family Model . Housing Connector
17 P . 1 – 6800 m (aluminum) 1 – XSG/AG
      2 – 7000 m (titanium) 2 – MCBH
      3 – 10,500 m (titanium)  

Example: 17P.11x is an SBE 17plus with 6800 m housing and XSG and AG connectors. See table below for description of each selection:


SEARAM (Version 2) Memory & Carousel Auto Fire Module for 9plus Underwater Unit - includes 16 MB memory, rechargeable NiMH (nickel metal hydride, 8.0 Ah) battery pack & 2 hour fast charger, Searam to CTD jumper cable & mount kit, 20 m data I/O cable for connection to computer serial port, dummy plugs, Seasoft software, & complete documentation.

Autonomous CTD operation (no conducting wire required) is provided when 9plus CTD is controlled with 17plus. Searam provides power, stores data in memory, & also allows operation of SBE 32 or 32C Carousel Water Sampler with pre-programmed closure pressures. Limited to closing 24 bottles.


  • Winch & cable not supplied by Sea-Bird.
  • When used without water sampler, 9plus is deployed in vertical orientation.
  • Standard & optional auxiliary sensors on 9plus not shown.
  • Version of 17plus in current production is referred to as 17plus V2.
SBE 17plus Housing (depth rating) Selections — MUST SELECT ONE
17P.1x Aluminum housing, 6800 meter depth rating  
17P.2x Titanium housing, 7000 meter depth rating
17P.3x Titanium housing, 10,500 meter depth rating
SBE 17plus Connector Selections — MUST SELECT ONE
17P.x1 XSG/AG connectors

Match connector type to those on 9plus CTD & SBE 32 or 32C Carousel Water Sampler you will be using with 17plus. Wet-pluggable connector options include wet-pluggable connectors on 17plus bulkhead connectors & on data I/O & CTD/Searam cables.

Wet-pluggable connectors may be mated in wet conditions. Their pins do not need to be dried before mating. By design, water on connector pins is forced out as connector is mated. However, they must not be mated or un-mated while submerged. Wet-pluggable connectors have a non-conducting guide pin to assist pin alignment & require less force to mate, making them easier to mate reliably under dark or cold conditions, compared to XSG/AG connectors. Like XSG/AG connectors, wet-pluggables need proper lubrication & require care during use to avoid trapping water in sockets.

We strongly recommend wet-pluggable connectors for 17plus. You must connect to 17plus on deck after each deployment to re-arm auto-fire mechanism. Wet-pluggable connectors provide better reliability given potential for rain, wave splash, etc. (If cost is an issue, an alternative is to use a jumper cable, with RMG connector at 17plus end and wet-pluggable connector at other end, to plug into wet-pluggable data I/O cable. This allows you to mate / unmate wet-pluggable connector to arm system. Contact Sea-Bird for quote for jumper cable.)

Wet-plugable connector photo not available

17P.x2 Wet-pluggable (MCBH) connectors
SBE 17plus Spares & Accessories
Buy Now
12 NiMH cells in rechargeable drop in pack (14.4v/8.0 Ah)

17plus comes standard with rechargeable NiMH batteries & charger; these are spares. Batteries are easily accessed by unscrewing battery end cap. 17plus can also be deployed with Ni-Cad or alkaline batteries.

Buy Now
NiMH Battery Charger for 6, 9 or 12-cell/8.0 Ah D-cell packs. Provides full recharge in 2 hours, includes AC power cord & battery charging cable.
801385 Data I/O cable, RMG-4FS with DB-9S & power leads, 2.4 m (DN 32277) These test cables are used for setting up system & uploading data from memory after recovery. Applicable 20 m cable is included with 17plus; these are spares.
801374 Data I/O cable, Wet-pluggable (MCIL-4FS) with DB-9S, 2.4 m (DN 32715)
801380 Data I/O cable, RMG-4FS with DB-9S, 20 m shielded (DN 31222)
801421 Data I/O cable, Wet-pluggable connector (MCIL-4FS) with DB-9S, 20 m shielded (DN 32789)
20200 USB to Serial Port Adapter, FTDI UC232R-10 (connects computers with USB ports to RS-232 instruments) Many newer PCs & laptop computers have USB port(s) instead of RS-232 serial port(s). USB serial adapter plugs into USB port, & allows a serial device to be connected through adapter. Multi-port adapters are available from other companies; see Application Note 68.
Buy Now
Searam Spares Kit (for aluminum housing with XSG/AG connectors), includes spare jumper cable, connectors, dummy plugs, & other hardware Order appropriate spares kit for housing type & connector type on 17plus:
  • 50105 for aluminum 17plus with XSG/AG connectors — See document 67134.
  • 50328 for aluminum 17plus with wet-pluggable connectors — See document 67136.
  • 50141 for titanium 17plus with XSG/AG connectors — See document 67135.
  • 50329 for titanium 17plus with wet-pluggable connectors — See document 67137.
Buy Now
Searam Spares Kit (for aluminum housing with Wet-pluggable connectors), includes spare jumper cable, connectors, dummy plugs, & other hardware
90488.2 Power/test junction box with cables Junction box provides external power supply for use during setup & data upload, so 17plus batteries will not be drawn down.


Many cables, mount kits, and spare parts can be ordered online.


  • To computer COM port (from XSG connector)
    801380 (20 m shielded cable), DN 31222
    801385 (2.4 m cable with power leads for bench use), 2.4 m, DN 32277
  • To computer COM port (from Wet-pluggable connector),
    801421 (20 m shielded cable), DN 32789
    801374 (2.4 m cable for bench use), DN 32715
  • 17132 To SBE 9plus (AG connectors), 0.33 m, DN 30568
  • 171796 To SBE 9plus (Wet-pluggable connectors), 0.33 m, DN 32758
  • 17198 To SBE 32 (AG connectors), 2 m, DN 30568
  • 171741 To SBE 32 (Wet-pluggable connectors), 2 m, DN 32758
  • 17015 To AC power supply from NiMH Battery Charger (U.S. Standard)
  • 801509 To NiMH battery pack from NiMH Battery Charger, DN 32935

Mount Kits

Mount to SBE 9plus

  • 50090  SBE 17plus to SBE 9plus Mount Kit

Spare Parts


  • 801512  12 NiMH cells in rechargeable drop-in pack (14.4V/8Ah)
  • 90900S (Buy Now)  NiMH battery charger for 6, 9, or 12 cells / 8 Ah D-cell packs. Provides full recharge in 2 hours, includes AC power cord & battery charging cable
  • 801642  12 Ni-Cad cells in drop-in pack, 14.4V, 4.4 AH
    (Note: As of 2011, Sea-Bird does not manufacture the 90226 Ni-Cad battery charger, because parts are no longer available. We are still able to provide the battery pack, for customers who already have a charger.)

Hardware & O-ring Kits

  • 50051 Small hardware & O-ring kit for SBE 17plus with aluminum housing (document 67014)
  • 50140 Small hardware & O-ring kit for SBE 17plus with titanium housing (document 67125)
  • 60021 Battery end cap for SBE 16/16plus/16plus-IM/16plus V2/16plus-IM V2, 17plus, 19/19plus/19plus V2, 25, 26/26plus, 53, 54, 55, or AFM (document 67042)
  • 23155.1 Magnetic switch kit for SBE 17plus (drawing 20193 for switch; kit also includes 1 magnet)
  • 50092 Jackscrew kit for SBE 16, 17plus, 19, 21, 25, 26/26plus, 52-MP, 53, 54, AFM, or PDIM
  • 50105 Support kit for SBE 17plus with aluminum housing & XSG/AG connectors (hardware, O-rings, cable, dummy plugs, connectors, etc.) (document 67134)
  • 50141 Support kit for SBE 17plus with titanium housing & XSG/AG connectors (hardware, O-rings, cable, dummy plugs, connectors, etc.) (document 67135)
  • 50328 Support kit for SBE 17plus with aluminum housing & wet-pluggable connectors (hardware, O-rings, cable, dummy plugs, connectors, etc.) (document 67136)
  • 50329 Support kit for SBE 17plus with titanium housing & wet-pluggable connectors (hardware, O-rings, cable, dummy plugs, connectors, etc.) (document 67137)