A captain assembled a crew for an expedition from Sandy Hook, New Jersey to the Caribbean with stops in Bermuda and Puerto Rico, and back up to the Outer Banks, North Carolina. The total journey was 2519.49 nautical miles and would have taken 13.48 days by ship, 2.95 years by glider, and 57.59 hours by car. Unfortunately, the captain and his crew never made it from Puerto Rico to The Outer Banks. The last known radio communications relayed screams and eerie, ghost like sounds. It is suspected that they were lost to the Bermuda triangle. Satellite images from that day show large clouds over much of the area, so no data was able to be collected. Patrick Ambrosio
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As our gliders continue to push onwards, both has slowed down a little as we encounter some less than favorable currents.
From the start of this month through this week, Challenger has run into an eddy that developed as we approached leaving us little time to react, resulting in us flying our glider up the eastern side of a clockwise rotating eddy:
In the animation above, we can see how as the glider approached the area in question as there appeared to be currents that flowed up to the north west. Then as we got closer to the area, the currents shifted and by the time we were about even with the center of the small eddy, the currents then accurately showed the rotation that was plaguing our progress.
Although this causes some frustation as the pilot when we lost some of our speed, instances such as this do leave us with a sense of accomplishment as we can see the data from our gliders being reflected in the models that our data is being plugged in to.
We can also see the fight with this eddy reflected in the velocity data above. As we approached the eddy, we can see how our velocity continued to plummet until just recently as we rounded the edge of the eddy and now we seem to be increasing ever so slightly. Hopefully we will be able to sustain this increase in the coming days and build up some more speed.
Over the next day, we will also be keeping an eye on the bathymetry around both Challenger and Silbo, asa they both are in the midst of obstacles:
Challenger is crossing the last of the sea mounts that are associated with the chain we have crossed a number of times now as we put distance between ourselves and the African Coast.
Silbo on the other hand is about to cross the Mid Atlantic Ridge for the second time, the firs being back in June of 2011 when we deployed out of Iceland along the Mid Atlantic Ridge.
Both of these regions reach up less than 1000m in some regions but we have taken the necessary precautions to make sure we do not run aground.
Force Wind Sea & Honor
This semester, I have made the leap transitioning to being a lecturer for the Ocean Observatories course that I took every semester under Scott Josh and Oscar for 4 years beginning with the fall semester of RU 17. And in helping with the class, I have built a model comparison tool that takes the data from both Challenger and Silbo and compares it to the data provided to us by the ocean models we have utilized as our road maps. These models not only provide us with the direction of the currents, but also have temperature and salinity.
One observation we have made now that we are tracking the comparisons, is that it seems that the models are underestimating the temperatures at depth; not fully capturing the temperature transfer at depth in the vertical direction. This could potentially skew the results of forecasts made based off of this data for such cases as climate change and other cases dependent on similar data. To aid with this, the data from Silbo and Challenger is now being fed back into the models to hopefully aid in the accuracy as we provide data points that were not previously available.
A few days ago, Silbo suffered from another mysterious reset at depth, followed by an increase in movement by the pitch battery- with little trace of why this is occurring After analyzing the data, the movement of the battery is still not completely known, however our friends up at TWR have been able to lock it down and reduce the movement. This has allowed Silbo's spike in energy usage to level off returning the estimate on how much energy remains into next year; well past our estimated date of arrival in the Caribbean in mid summer.
Challenger is continuing to fly well, however, we seem to have found a small eddy that is rotating against our favor, effectively slowing us down. Over the next couple days, we will continue to explore this anomaly and make a decision as to where to go from here.
Force Wind Sea & Honor
A study by members of RUCOOL (Drs. Grace Saba and Oscar Schofield) and collaborators at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (Dr. Deborah Steinberg) and University of South Florida (Dr. Joseph Torres and Erica Ombres) published recently in PLOS ONE shows that ocean acidification, the decrease in ocean pH associated with the uptake of anthropogenic atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), increases feeding and nutrient excretion rates of the keystone species Euphausia superba (Antarctic krill). The observed shifts in krill metabolism are consistent with increased physiological costs associated with regulating internal acid-base equilibrium at elevated levels of atmospheric CO2. This represents an additional stress that may hamper growth and reproduction, which would negatively impact an already declining krill population along the West Antarctic Peninsula. Read more and download manuscript here: http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0052224.
Aimee Maiorino knows how to post.
The Oceanic Platform of the Canary Islands (PLOCAN) is a general marine science and technology mobilisation initiative that seeks to obtain the international socioeconomic business competitiveness derived from access to the oceanic space. PLOCAN is working in different fields as renewable energies, focused in ocean's energy resources, oceanographic buoys and underwater vehicles.
As one of its most important areas, PLOCAN Training Program has been working in the last year with underdegree students and graduates, mainly with Spanish students.
But this summer we are carried out the MaReS Summer School, an international initiative with the collaboration of Rutgers University, University of Madeira (Madeira Tecnopolo), and with the University of Azores, with an international student exchange program.
Two of our MaReS Summer School students are now in RU-COOL helping with SILBO glider mission between Reykjavik to Las Palmas.
Heres a website to check Tv listings http://wh.rutgers.edu/collaborations/atlantic-crossing/about