Blinding me with science.

Part 1:

(Due to really poor internet service, I’ve had to break this post in two)

We have been super busy on this cruise launching and recovering science instruments and moorings.  Here is some of what we’ve been doing.

This torpedo looking thing is called the VMP.  We launch over the side by hanging it from the crane and then someone will trip the release and away it goes.  It drifts down close to the bottom and then drops its weights and then floats back up to the surface.  Round trip in 5000 meters of water is approx. 3.5 hours.  It studies all kinds of stuff but it is mostly being used to measure currents.
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Here it is being hoisted out of its cradle and over the side.  We will be launching and recovering the VMP about 100 times this trip.
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Here it is when it pops back up to the surface.  It has a radio signal that we can home in on as well as a strobe light and flag to make it more visible
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Another piece of equipment is the CTD.  These are pretty common on most research vessels.

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The CTD is mostly used to take water samples at various depths.  Each of the grey bottles can be opened on command and the samples are returned to the surface to the lab.  In this case they have added several instruments that measure current, density, etc and are not using the water samples the normal way.
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Here they are capturing the water that was taken from 3000 meters below.  The water isn’t being used by the science party on this trip so one of the AB’s have been cooking the water to make pure sea salt.  The CTD is usually deployed straight down and up.  On this trip they are doing Towyos which are basically moving it up and down while trolling 1/2 knot forward.  They have  been ranging mostly between 4800 and 4100 meters deep.  Towyos can last 24 hours or longer.

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