Monday, January 5, 2009

NBP0901 is underway

Hullo All,

We are steaming through the straits of Magellan, so named for the
explorer. It's not the only thing named for this guy around here.

Tonight will most likely be be our last glimpse of land (aside from
the occasional nunatuk -- look it up and post the answer for extra
credit!!) for the next two months. Desert tortoise and friends, I
don't know if I'll be able to take a picture of cape horn, as we will
head southeast out of the straits of magellan into the open ocean
tonight! There are some pictures of the Straits, which are
spectacularly scenic, on my website under Antarctic photos. I'll try
to take some more, weather dependent, later tonight. I'm hoping for
some wildlife -- dolphins, magellanic penguins, albatrosses, a whale?...

It's likely that the next week will be spent in transit across the
Drake Passage. Depending on the sea state, we will be working hard
making sure that all of the instruments will work as we get closer to
the "ice". Tonight I'm making and bottling some chemicals which we
will use to analyze dissolved oxygen in water that we collect from
below the surface. More important is to make sure belongings and
gear are secured so they don't fly around in rough waters. I have to
brush up on my knots, which I was never very good at to begin with.

Tonight we had a brief meeting to discuss the science objectives of
the cruise. Since there will be more talking than doing over the
next few days, I'll plan to describe them as I learn more.

Please feel free to post questions in the form of comments, otherwise
you'll just have to live with what I'm thinking when I sit down to

Thanks for reading...


  1. Hope the Drake Passage isn't too rough this year! Do you take samples all the way out and back...or only on the way to Pine Island Glacier?

  2. One of my 10-year old students had a good question for thought: since early explorers only had the view of the land from the surface of Earth, how did they know that the land was shaped like a horn so they named it Cape Horn? They are working on figuring that out now. Don't kids just amaze you!?
    Will the results of your tests be logged on a website/archive available to the public who might be interested. Today my students will learn to test the water in our salmon tank for several things, one of which is dissolved Oxygen. They are interested to make comparisons.

  3. Thanks for the "look here" with regards to the Horn images. I'll forward this onto the kids. We present about our shadow project to the school board in the next couple of weeks, but then they are excited to compare the t-s diagrams.