Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tuesday, June 15


Well today was full of mixed emotions; exciting as we finished our last dredge but also sad as the cruise winds down in its final days. Dredge 47, the base of Mount Schlitzky, was the last dredge, and it did not disappoint. The dredge produced only a few rocks, but they were of nice quality and so it was a great ending. After the dredge, which was located in the northeast section of our survey area, we finished the last bit of multibeam surveying in order to make our map more complete. After surveying for a few more hours, we are now in transit back to Costa Rica where we are set to arrive at Porta Caldera at 0800 Friday morning.

Dredge 47 being brought up on deck

Since scientists have a habit of deciding to be done and then change our minds and do just one more dredge, it is tradition for the wire to be cut at the end. At the daily science meeting, our Res techs held a wire cutting ceremony for the science crew. Chief scientist Karen Harpp had the honor, and challenge, of cutting through the thick metal cable, which she did with such poise. She now has a very cool wire loop to keep…and possibly make into a really huge necklace!

Karen as she attempts to cut the wire with the first pair of wire cutters
Chief Scientist Karen cutting the dredging wire

Other than dredging these past few days we have been working on an assignment where we were each assigned a different section of the area we mapped. We each got the side scan and bathymetry maps of our sections, over which we placed a layer of Mylar. We then interpreted the data shown on the two maps by looking at the different units or types of features there are and then inferring what these features mean on our maps and also what they mean for the whole survey area. Over the next few days at the science meetings we will be presenting our results. It is a really cool assignment and gives us Marques diligently working on his map. practice in interpreting the data we have collected which will come in handy for our senior theses.
Krista's map that she presented today

Although we are done dredging, there is still a lot of work to be done. The whole lab area and fantail need to be completely packed up and cleaned by Friday! So we will still have our watches, but only our day shifts, so it will be 8am-12pm, 12-4pm, and then the 4-8 watch will change to 10am-2pm. As a result, we are awake and working during the day, but can relax in the evenings and get back onto a normal sleeping schedule. We have a lot to pack up, we have many many buckets of rocks as well as tools, papers, rock saws, and just about every other office supply or tool you can think of, so the next few days will be a little chaotic! In addition to packing up everything from the lab we also need to compile all the data onto one hard drive and then make sure everyone has a copy. Thankfully Gretchen has offered to be in charge of the daunting task. As well as sharing data we are all also sharing pictures by compiling them onto one hard drive, that way we can all have pictures from the trip.

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