Archive for July 26th, 2008

At the Target Latitude – Finally.

Saturday, July 26th, 2008

RU17 is traveling north and making the turn to the east. We are approaching 41 N, our target latitude.  This has been a long wait.  We have forecasts of eastward currents along this latitude that we hope to catch.

Below is a 72 hour composite SST image. We followed the eastern side of the cold eddy centered near 39 N, 47W, staying in the warm water and riding the current north. We are now turning toward the cold eddy we see in the imagery between 40-43 N, 38-42W. We want to fly along the southern side of this eddy.

Below is the satellite altimetry. We are trying to circle a high (orange) in the sea surface height field located near 40 N, 45 W.  The hope is to whip around this high to the east, and cross the saddle point near 40.5N, 43.5 W into the southern side of the intense low corresponding to the cold eddy discussed in the above SST image.  The danger area is the saddle point.   Here it is quite easy to get pushed the wrong way.  We have already experienced trouble trying to cross one of these regions before.  Maybe this time we will be more lucky.