Category: preparation

Back at it!

Hello there.

It’s been a while, but I’m heading back out to sea! I leave on Monday for San Diego and we head out to sea on Wednesday. I’m going to try to blog from sea, but as always its hard to predict what the internets will allow out in open water.  No hydrothermal vents this time, but we will be investigating an oxygen minimum zone off Baja. I will post again soon with some more info about the cruise location and research goals.

This post is primarily to test out an automated system for updating my facebook and twitter feeds.

This is just 1 shipment of stuff I will be bringing with me, and I’m the only person going from my lab.



Today was productive.  I wouldn’t say we did any science, but we are certainly getting ready to!  Kiana, Pete and I spent a long time today getting seawater plumbed to our van.  This involved pumps, filters, various fittings and clamps, and of course, many lengths of garden hose.  We ended up flooding the van in the process, but lets not dwell on that, shall we?  Seawater alll over equipment = recipe for corrosion.  The good thing is that you can just hose it out.

We also started putting together all the valves and fittings for our high pressure pumps.  These allow us to keep titanium vessels at the same pressures that exist on the ocean floor.  Very cool, but a bit scary if you are also heating the contents of the vessel.

The work day ended with a bit of danger laced crafts time.  We  sewed titanium mesh into a burrito shape with titanium wire (this stuff is sharp, and on a rocky boat leaves your finger quite sore).  These burritos will be filled with things that microbes can grow on and left in a chimney for a while to see what grows on them.

I am really excited by the idea of getting to bed before midnight.  We are currently transiting to a new site where we will dive tomorrow.  Hopefully we will get samples for Kiana and I to work with.

That’s all for now… more pictures soon.

The Work Begins

I am writing from my phone because my hotel in Astoria has no wireless. Sorry if this is short. We have made it to the boat, but we don’t move on board until tomorrow. As soon as we walked on board we walked past Alvin. It was really exciting to see up close. I was even able to shake its “hand”. We spent yesterday unpacking and setting up 3 different lab spaces. Moving heavy water baths around a ship is certainly a challenge!

Octavian clearly can’t wait to get to sea. (see photo)

Also we had an amazing dinner last night that Octavian also enjoyed. (see other photo)