Out Comes the Science Equipment

Last night, Captain Yousri Maghrabi steered the Palmer toward Station A, at 76.5 degrees south, 170 degrees east. It’s just a patch of open water about 40 miles northeast of Ross Island, but oceanographers have been measuring water here since the mid-1990s. When we got there, the only land left visible were Ross and Beaufort Islands far off our port stern. The occasional Adélie penguin swam by on its way to a small iceberg. Everything else was ocean.

Everyone got a practice run with their instruments before heading to our first major sampling site tomorrow. We dropped instruments 740 meters (almost half a mile) to the seafloor; put pumps overboard to collect particles suspended in the water; and brought water back on board so we could learn about the microorganisms living there. At 2 a.m., a small team set out in an inflatable rubber boat to recover one of our gliders. Read on through the slideshow to find out what happened:

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About Hugh Powell

Hugh is a staff writer at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and is on special assignment with the Rutgers University Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences. He has previously written for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

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