Closing in on the Edge of a Waterfall
As Silbo slinks forward in the slow moving waters of the western side of this cold counter clockwise rotating eddy, he inches closer to a ledge that will lead to a strong southern current as we enter the realm of the clockwise warm eddy- the first currents flowing to the south since October.
Silbo has been fighting for almost 4 months now trying to find his way across the northern flux we found in the central Atlantic, but all that work has amounted to the southern flux we hope to find on the edge of this eddy. If the signal seen in the model is true, this eddy may be what carries us to the south and close to the equator, but more importantly Brazil! By the end of this mission, Silbo will have blown past Ru27's record of 220 days at sea (we are currently on day 203) and will be ready for much needed rest and tune up. Best Wishes Silbo!
In the South, Challenger is continuing to push on to the North as we follow our way point towards the eddy to our north west:
With this way point, we hope to fly a similar path to that drawn on the figure above, snaking our way along the northern brim of the warm eddy and out to the west along the adjacent cold eddy.
The most important point of this path is that it keeps us away from the second eddy to our north. If we were to get caught in this eddy, we would be in trouble as we would get pushed by the current across state lines into the waters of Namibia. Luckily, Dave has confirmed that we can fly both north and west directions well so following this path should not be a problem.
Speaking of the tests Dave has run, in today's update, he reported on a number of things including the energy consumption of diving deep. Now this is important because we are trying our best to avoid the highly productive waters off of South Africa. We want this because Challenger has a very long journey ahead of her and we have already run into complications as it is. The last thing we need is to get bogged down by critters growing on her hulls and slowing her down.
By diving between 200-1000m, we would increase our energy consumption by roughly 10% while keeping ourselves in waters below 15˚C and out of solar radiation - two key factors in our biological issues.
Force Wind Sea & Honor