22 March 2004

Monday, 22 March 2004

Finding the spot.

We spent the last day and night running a transect south through the site where we hope to make the release. This survey will last for a few days, as we determine what is going on in the surface ocean. Initial results confirm that the iron in the seawater is low, and that there are enough of the other nutrients needed for a bloom to form. It is also important for us to find a place where the currents are relatively weak, so that the fertilised patch doesn't get swept away. The figure shows sea surface temperature along the ships path. There is a sharp front to the south, that we will avoid. Somewhere near 47°S, 173 °E is looking like a good candidate for the iron release site.

Meanwhile, the weather has given up on being nice to us, the wind is up and we are all having to get used to the rolling and pitching of life at sea. There are problems with some of the equipment needed for the release, so we will shelter in Dunedin tomorrow, and use the time to sort out the faulty gear.

Contributor: Ed Abraham

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ed Abraham in one of the ship's labs.

The track of the ship over the last 36 hours. The colour indicates the temperature of the sea surface water.

View from the starboard side showing the rough conditions encountered. The line dragging behind is to provide underway water samples for analysis.

Research subject: Oceans