I am back to feeling 100% and have even had an apetite for the last two meals (which were awesome by the way)!
Just watched Alvin launch… very cool. It is quite an involved process as you might imagine. In addition to the folks on deck watching and directing the process there are two swimmers who stand on Alvin as it gets lowered into the water. The swimmers do various safety checks before they clear the sub to dive and are then picked up by a Zodiac boat.
We collected bottom water last night with a CTD (conductivity, temperature, depth) cast. A carousel of 10 liter bottles with top and bottom held open (this is the CTD) is lowered by a large winch. From inside the computer lab we can watch a screen and see various water parameters as the CTD descends. When it gets to the desired location (last night that was about 50 meters above the bottom) we tell it to release the bottle lids and bottoms – capturing 10 liters of bottom water per bottle.
Today we used the water we collected last night as well as some creative engineering and troubleshooting to get our water system pumping so that it is good to go as soon as we have our sample and can start our experiments. Octavian has been an enthusiastic helper throughout the process. However, his favorite part so far has been sitting on the bow and staring off over the ocean! [pictures to follow soon... the internet is a bit too slow at the moment]