Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Day 6

As expected, I did not sleep well this night, because every time the ship was encountering some sea ice, I was awakened by the noise and shaking. I did not put my ear plugs because with them I don't hear my alarm clock, but I don't care missing breakfast tomorrow morning, I want to sleep well tonight !

After the most amazing day of the cruise yesterday, today has been the most boring day of the cruise so far. I prepared one of the two automated water samplers that we are going to deploy, and that will automatically take 500 ml samples of seawater near the bottom of the Antarctic shelf once every week. The water samplers will then be analyzed for salinity and for oxygen isotopes ratio, which together give information on the origin of the water: melt water from ice sheet or from sea ice, local precipitation, or oceanic water. The goal is to quantify the freshwater budget at a particular location around Antarctica, to better understand the physical processes influencing ice shelves melting and modifying the properties of the water that ultimately sinks to the deepest parts of the world ocean. But back to these water samplers, they each have 48 bottles, that must be individually carefully prepared before deploying. It is a very tedious and repetitive task, but research cannot be exciting all the time ! I managed to prepare one of them today, I will do the other one tomorrow.

So I did not have time to take pictures today, to hunt for seals and penguins, sorry...
I wanted to put a video I took yesterday instead, but I realized I forgot the cable to transfer the video from my camcorder to my laptop. What an air head !...

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