The message below arrived in my email inbox this morning, from contributor “Intrepid Research Assistant”:
Intrepid research assistant here, aboard the R/V Oceanus. It is 8:30am and we are currently working on final preparations for departure. Our original plan was to leave this morning at 9:30, but that’s been pushed back to noon so we have a bit more time to get organized. I’ve never seen so much equipment and so many scientists aboard a ship before! We have about 18 scientists participating on this leg of the cruise (the first two weeks), and enough equipment to sample everything from sediment to zooplankton and chemistry to physics and everything in between. My personal responsibility will be sampling zooplankton with the MOCNESS. This is just like the MOCNESS we use in the Chesapeake Bay, but it has a one square meter opening, which is bigger than the 0.25 square meter that I’m used to. The MOCNESS is ready to go; we completed assembly yesterday and it’s been tested and strapped down for the trip. Space is very tight with all of the work we’re trying to do, so I still need to find a place to process my samples, but I’m sure that will work itsself out. I hope to check in again when we make our port call in two weeks.