Sep
02
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 02-09-2009
Minibat final landing

Minibat final landing

     The minibat has been collecting data for the last 24-30 hours. Overall, the horizontal mixing of momentum and water properties like temperature, salt, and chemicals that were once poorly understood over horizontal scales of 100 to 1000 meters will now be analyzed and explained further. After the removal of the minibat, the drifter was retrieved.

Retrieving drifter

Retrieving drifter

     It is unclear if the drifter was helpful in locating the dye patch. The shipboard CTD was deployed to calibrate some instruments taken from the mooring that was retrieved on day 1 of the cruise. The depths of the calibration were 1000, 700 and 400 meters.

CTD going down

CTD going down

     This morning Orcas were spotted at approximately 11:55 am at 44.614582°, -152.024212° heading NE. Orcas aren’t usually found this far south. One possible explanation is that they are chasing a female humpback and her calf.

     I want to thank COAS TAS, and the crew for all their support and help while I sailed with the R/V Wecoma. This has been a great opportunity for me and I can’t wait to share with my students. Aloha!

Our team

Our team

Aug
31
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 31-08-2009

Today has been another wonderful day at sea. Breakfast 0715 was interrupted by a school of Pacific White sided dolphins that were cruising with the ship. See video

We are using the last of the dye which was released in a semi-straight line to continue the study of coastal circulation. The scientists believe it might be easier to track a straight line and make it easier to get the depth they are aiming for – 3 meters – without a lot of movement. Also, they deployed a drifter to help keep track of the dye patch as it disperses.

driftergettingready

driftergoing in

The drifter was deployed with the dye. In theory, the drifter will move along with the dye patch. It has communication capabilities via a little antenna located on the buoy. The anchor sock of the drifter moves with the currents and the dye. It will broadcast its position to the ship via e-mail and can also be tracked using the “Argos” satellite system. It’s Ata’s Job to decipher the code and tell the crew where he thinks the patch will be.

A deep mix layer was discovered at 10-20 meters. This shows that there might be linear internal waves at that depth. Even though the dye was injected at 3 meters, it has been found at 10-15 meters. This is a sign of subducting water with currents flowing at that depth. The data that the science party has compiled could take years to analyze.

last injection of dye

Aug
30
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 30-08-2009

Log of Vertical Integral Fluroescine along true ships track

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The black line you see is the ships track. The blue are lower values and the red are higher values. Currently, the minibat is at 25 meters. The ships speed is 4.6 kts and we heading north.

Chief scientists Murray Levine primary goal in further analysis is to determine if we are able to track a patch of dye adequately enough to learn something new about the horizontal diffusion process. Brandy Cervantes, a research associate post doc, boarded yesterday to monitor this dye release until the dye dissipates.

Brandy

Brandy

At 1057 hrs we passed OSU’s drifter. The drifter’s main purpose is to collect temperatures from the base layer around 7 meters. The scientists are curious to see if the drifter picks up any temperature variations as it passes through the dye patch. Today, I had an opportunity to fly the minibat. I had to keep it in the range of 1-25 meters. This sounds easy but it’s not. I had to continuously push the button up or down while the ship was cruising at 5 knts. There are a lot of variables to consider. After my watch ended (early), I went to dinner and was interrupted by a huge school of Pacific White side spinner dolphins that were chasing tuna. Currently we are in a upwelling season and the water temperature is perfect for the tuna’s travels. This has been a great day for me on the ocean.

Aug
30
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 30-08-2009

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Today were headed back to Yaguina bay to drop off two people and pick up two more.

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We did not dock because it would take too much time.  Instead, they launched “Wecoma 1” a zodiac that was operated by Doug Beck the lead Bosun. Doug is also a Dive master so, in the event some work needs to be done underneath the ship Doug is the man for the job.  It was exciting to watch the deployment of “Wecoma 1”.

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Currently, the ship is conducting another survey to determine where to inject the second dispersion dye.

At 1647 hrs (4:47) 44° 41.3′ N -125° W – the minibat was launched for the second time. The science party monitors the minibat on a 24 hr watch. This entails flying the minibat and shouting out “we are in the dye”. Currently the minibat is flying between 10-12meters depth below the ocean surface.


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Aug
28
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 28-08-2009

We traveled through the dye patch all night at 5 knots and continued today. Samples were taken at 8hz. Chief Levine has noticed horizontal changes in the temperature.

Mike is a mechanical engineer from OSU. He helped construct Skita the bouy. Pictured here he's hard at work.

Mike is a mechanical engineer from OSU. He helped construct Skita the bouy. Pictured here he's hard at work.

monitoring station

monitoring station

Following the dye has been challenging as the hours tick away so does the dye. Chief Levine must guess what the currents are doing and where he thinks the dye patch might be, and  then he calls the bridge and tells them to change course. The minibat was removed at 1000hrs to change out the batteries which last approximatel 10-12 hrs.

All maritime vessels use knots when referring to speed.

A common conversion is wind velocity. On analysis charts and weather reporting observations, wind is the most commonly given in one of three units: Miles per hour, knots, or meters per second. A mile per hour is a higher numerical wind speed than a knot. The way to remember this is that “m” in miles stands for ‘more”. To find mile per hour, multiple the knots value by 1.15. To find knots, divide the miles per hour value by 1.15

1 knot = 1.15 miles per hour

1 mile per hour = 0.87 knots

100 knots = 115 mph

Beautiful sunset

Beautiful sunset

Aug
27
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 27-08-2009

The Wecoma has a system that pumps seawater from below the ship into the laboratory where the Salinity and Temperature are continuously measured.

The minbat is getting ready to launch. Chief Scientist Murray Levine is putting on last minute touches.

The minbat is getting ready to launch. Chief Scientist Murray Levine is putting on last minute touches.

Last night, Chief Scientist Murray Levine asked the captain to stay on a particular course so that he could track changes in the surface seawater temperature. Today, we deployed the Minibat and released the first dispersion dye following the same course as the ship followed last night.

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The reason this track was chosen was because there was a big change (gradient) in water temperature. The minibat has one CTD to measure Salinity, Temperature and Depth and two fluorometer monitors. The fluorometer detects the dye as the water passes through its chamber. The ship’s track will be continually modified based on the real time data in order to follow the dye patch. The maximum depth the minibat can dive is 50 meters. Chief Scientist Levine wants to measure water currents across the temperature gradient and how the temperature gradient affects change within the currents. I’ll be “on watch” today from 4-8pm with Kate Adams and Ata Suanda. Ata is a graduate student in Coastal Oceanography. The crew says I already “have salt in my veins”– this must be a sailor saying!


Scientists use the Celsius temperature scale instead of Fahrenheit.

The formula to convert degrees Celsius to Fahrenheit is:

degrees F = 9/5 x (degrees C) + 32      (the symbol for degrees is ° )

° F = 9/5 x °C + 32

Example: Convert 20 °C  to  °F

Answer:  68 °F

Tomorrow we will learn about wind velocity conversions.

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Aug
26
Alder bouy (and Sea lion!)

Alder bouy (and Sea lion!)

When we first arrived to retrieve Alder the (OrCoos bouy) after five months at sea we had kick off a few stellar sea lions who weren’t really too happy to see us. They jumped in on their own – I think they some how knew we were there to pick it up.

After many hours of intense labor by the Wecoma crew Alder after was successfully boarded along with all its instrumentation (except for one CTD – conductivity, temperature and depth instrument). We don’t know how it was lost but it was gone – only the frame was still attached. I was surprised to see a lot of biological growth on Alder. There where some barnacles and a lot of sea weed, (at least that’s what I think it is) There are no biologists on-board to verify this. I’ll find out and let you know. As I observed all day from the O1 level I was reminded that science is hard work and really the work has just begun. Scientists need to interpret all the data that their instruments have gathered over the last 5 months.

Alder onboard

Alder onboard

Aug
26
Filed Under (cruise blog) by Ting on 26-08-2009

Today is a gorgeous day in Newport we are about to depart at 1000hrs. I spoke with Kate Adams, a Ph.d graduate student in Physical Oceanography. Her research interest is in seasonal O2 depletion. She took me on a tour of the new OrCoos Ocean Observatory bouy that we are going to deploy. She explained that we are going to replace Alder (the name of the old bouy) which is located at NH-10 approximately 10 nautical miles off shore. The reason why we are replacing the Alder is because it’s ADCP (Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler) battery life has expired. The ADCP measures currents and directions. They are going to replace Alder with (Sitka). Sitka weighs 2,600 lbs in air and 2,400 in the water. Sitka has a variety of instrumentation. It collects data on Temperature, Salinity, Wind speed and Argos is used to tell scientists its position sort of like a GPS. In the event that it becomes free OSU scientists can retrieve it.

Skita

Skita

Skita's Anchor

Skita's Anchor

Aug
25
Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Robert on 25-08-2009