July 2012 archive

Jul 31

Day 15: GLAD Expedition – Farewell drifters!

Today was the day we bid farewell to our last drifter. I am told it was a bittersweet moment (not really). I missed it on account of sleeping in- late nights on deck can take it out of you. The groundwork for this morning’s final deployment (an inverted “L” on our cyclone) was an all-night, …

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Jul 30

Day 14: GLAD Expedition – Cyclone Hunters

Today is cyclone-hunting day. Don’t worry- it’s not nearly as sinister or dangerous as it sounds. The kind of cyclone that we’re eager to meet is a circular current 50 km in diameter with flow speeds of up to 40 cm/s. In other words, it’s no menacing maelstrom; rather, it is a counterclockwise-rotating feature that …

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Jul 30

Day 13: GLAD Expedition – bit of a blur

I’ll be honest- I don’t like to take shortcuts, but today was a bit of a blur. Maybe it’s because I’m trying to recall events that began 14 hours prior to my writing this. I’ll start simple: breakfast was as it always has been: fresh fruit (!), eggs, and breakfast pastry with some kind of …

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Jul 29

Day 12: GLAD Expedition – Deja vu all over again

It’s like deja vu all over again… Morning brought Gulfport, MS. Gulfport, MS brought visitors to the ship. Today’s gaggle of visitors was made up of scientists and representatives from the NRL (Naval Research Lab). After a brief tour/presentation much in the mold of last week’s version, we were off to Historic Gulfport. Same restaurant, …

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Jul 28

Day 11: GLAD Expedition – Hyperbolic Points

July the 27th has been a bit of a lull in the normal course of GLAD events. It was to be expected, of course- our current ship trajectory has us heading towards Gulfport for a second refueling/restocking. Anyway, much of the day has been spent surveying, organizing data, and (for me) sorting out a data …

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Jul 27

Day 10: GLAD Expedition – Another day, Another drifter

Another day, another drifter deployment. This morning contained the entirety of our “S2” deployment. Three hours of ripping around our drop site left us with a total of 214 transmitting GLAD units in the water. For those of you don’t track this kind of thing on your own, this means that the Grand Lagrangian Deployment …

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Jul 26

Day 9: GLAD Expedition – Construction PARTY!

As of 4:15 PM Eastern Daylight time, our construction for drifter deployment S2 had been completed. Well, half-completed. One half of the sails were left off to allow for compact storage and to decrease damage to drifters while the ship is in transit. The bulk of the legwork is done and our precious fiberglass is …

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Jul 24

Day 8: GLAD Expedition – Codename “Wild Goose Chase”

The S1 recovery operation (codenamed “Wild Goose Chase” in yesterday’s post) is almost done. Informal (and modest) estimations had us finding around half of the originally released 90 drifters. At the time of my writing this (seven hours into this operation) 77 of the 90 initially released have been recovered. I would not be shocked …

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Jul 23

Day 7: GLAD Expedition – Aquarium-State-of-Mind

Day seven of GLAD has been filled with all things Gulfport thus far. The day’s first development was the (scheduled) addition of a 12th member of the science staff: Darek Bogucki out of Texas A&M University. Quickly on the heels of his arrival came the presentation/question session with members of our funding agency, the Gulf …

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Jul 22

Day 6: GLAD Expedition – 2 boats, 5 hours, 90 drifters…

Two small boats. Five hours. Ninety drifters. The time from breakfast to lunch was filled with the long-awaited “S1” deployment. Using nothing more than our small boat’s compass and our own mariners’ intuition (with some pre-loaded GPS waypoints on a hand-held Garmin), we dotted our little patch of Gulf with a third of the payload. …

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