Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Hi, sorry this is a day late coming up! It appears that every time we travel NW (which will be about half the time we're out here) we won't be getting much in the way of internet. Now that we know that, we'll try to make sure we get posts up for the day before we lose our connection.

05/20 (sunrise)

Today has been fairly eventful. After nearly two days of transit we finally reached our destination in the Northern Galapagos. Early this morning, the crew on watch helped the Hawaii mapping group deploy the MR1 sidescan (for more info on the sidescan and the Hawaii Mapping Research Group, follow this link:, and later redeployed "Maggie" - the magnetometer - and we started "mowing the lawn" - sweeping back and forth across the region. Watches are now busy as we collect Multibeam bathymetry, MR1, and Mag data, make initial interpretations of the sea-floor we are mapping in preparation for the dredging we will do later on in the cruise.

MR1 being deployed (below)

Today was also exciting as we saw land for the first time in a couple days! Late this afternoon we cruised by the tiny Darwin and Wolf islands - both remnants of the volcanic processes that we're researching. Tomorrow morning we'll pass by them again even more closely. It will be the last time we see land for a couple weeks.

Darwin Island: Home to LOTS of birds (above)

Wolf Island (above)

As might have been mentioned before, we also have science meetings every day at 3pm. During the meetings we discuss what we've been up to on all of our watches as a way to stay connected to the group as a whole. We've also had a couple really interesting presentations already. Yesterday Dorsey - a member of the Hawaii group - told us about her participation in the search for the wreckage of Flight 447, the AirFrance flight that went down last year in the Atlantic on its way from Rio to Paris. Today Daniel - an Ecuadorian biologist - gave a presentation on his PhD disseration on Black Coral.

We're also starting a blog feature today that will be continuing on a periodic basis over the next month. Head over to the Crew Corner page to check out our first crew interview, with one of the crew members who we interact with the most, Drew.

05/20 Sunset (below)

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