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News And Announcements
Thursday, 28 February 2008 19:09
CASO activities on the Polarstern
Dear friends, The next International Polar Day, focussing on our Changing Earth, is in two weeks. We have prepared a number of webpages, resources, and links to relevant IPY science. These can all be accessed from the link on www.IPY.org (top right), or directly at http://www.ipy.org/index.php?/ipy/detail/earth/ There are also three aspects of particular interest that I hope you can inform your networks about: 1. EDUCATIONAL FLYERS Flyers can be downloaded from the educators page at ...
Published in News And Announcements
Thursday, 14 February 2008 18:15
Drawing South - An Artist journey to the Antarctic
Drawing South is a website documenting the visual communication of artist Nicholas Hutcheson from on board the ship Aurora Australis as it visits 3 of the Australian bases on one of the annual re-supply trips. Nicholas will be heading to the Antarctic as part of the Australian Governments Antarctic Arts fellowship progam. Each week of the 8 week voyage, a new set of drawings will be uploaded featuring the weather, interviews with people working in the Antartic, answers to viewers questions and the daily observations of things around him. Part of this project is working with school students who are following the journey, asking him questions and learning about Ant...
Published in links and resources
Sunday, 27 January 2008 18:03
Happy Australia day…
Saturday 26th January 2008 Just look at the latitude! We will be back in Australian waters tonight and arriving at the Hobart wharf early tomorrow morning. Everyone’s focus is on home now and those who can have been losing themselves in movies or sleep, willing the hours to pass. Emails from managers are flying around the ship thick and fast. Quarantine paperwork is being finalized, the labs are packed up and cleaned, project reports are being written. The day is mapped out for us. We have our Australia day morning tea at 1000. After lunch our last shipboard seminar will be a screening of a DVD of Jeff Hoffman’s work on the Sorcerer 2 yacht voyage with Craig Venter. (Jeff’s pitch is the great travel footage, but I know there’s also fanta...
Saturday, 26 January 2008 17:40
Miracle in the galley
Friday 25th January 2008 John, Kim, Ashley and Lyn are at the front line when it comes to safety at sea. They have ensured that we all added an extra layer of fat to keep us safe in the event that we found ourselves exposed to the extreme Antarctic elements for any length of time. We were warned at the outset that the first precaution before heading outside is to have a hot meal, the second being to dress appropriately for the cold. I have been meticulous in following this advice and feel confident that if I was stranded outside for any length of time I’d do nearly as well as an elephant seal....
Friday, 25 January 2008 21:37
The Jeffs work on
Thursday 24th January While some on the ship have got what John in the galley called 'the channels' and slipped into a kind of lethargy and listlessness associated with nearing home, the oceanography lab is pumping. Some background first: Three quarters of the Earth's surface is water but it's this vast frontier of ocean that we are only just starting to discover. The future, it seems, is microbiology. As recently as 2004 a report in Science astounded the scientific community. It described the microbial diversity in water samples taken in the Sargasso Sea by the Venter Institute. This sea was selected specifically because of its low nutrient levels but remarkably, of the 1.045 billion base pairs sequenced from the water sample...
Tuesday, 22 January 2008 10:37
The last trawl; let the work begin.
Todays' Sitrep proclaims success. 'CEAMARC sampling officially finished at 8 minutes past midnight. Overall, 82 different sites were occupied during CEAMARC, with samples collected from at least 78 sites; well in excess of the 67 sites we had hoped for.' We are one of three ships working in this part of Antarctica collecting marine life for the Collaborative East Antarctic Marine Census (CEAMARC). Our focus is on the benthic organisms below 200 metres. We have been looking at biodiversity in a region never before investigated so comprehensively and can now offer another jigsaw piece of information to complete the larger Census of Antarctic Marine Life (CAML) picture. Our grand tally is 106 trawls and 114 grab or box-corer deployments. The CEA...
Monday, 21 January 2008 12:22
Lunch at B-17A
Because everything is going so well and we are on target with our sampling, a window of opportunity has opened. We are going to have lunch beside the giant iceberg while the crew in the Fast Rescue Craft (FRC) takes a small party to collect some special water samples. When they return we will have a group photo on the helideck. Looks good on paper. The berg has a name and a history. B-17A calved from the Ross Ice Shelf in April 2000 and appears to have become grounded here in 2006. It's 35 km long. Toby measured its height using the sextant and found it was 43 metres high. From the chair in my cabin the iceberg makes up a strip across the middle third of my porthole. Testing the waters around B-17A is Tank's extra project. He wants to find out if icebergs ar...
Sunday, 20 January 2008 12:14
In recognition of the debubbleometer
The oceanography lab next to the CTD room is a maze of plumbing linking test tubes, flasks, computer screens and electronic devices. It's heart, which never stop beating, is the 'debubbleometer', which provides the lifeblood to many of the research projects underway on the voyage. Surface seawater drawn from beneath the ship is continuously measured by a range of instruments: a salinometer (measuring salt), a fluorometer (measuring fluorescence) a temperature probe and a CO2 monitor. There's a great deal of interest in CO2. People are taking samples to learn more about the relationship between CO2 found in the air and the ocean, which makes the debubbleometer (or air separator) a vital piece of equipment. It's crucial that only the CO2 in the water is measured an...
Saturday, 19 January 2008 08:23
The 'In Sung No 1' incident.
Anti whaling activities in the Southern Ocean headlined this morning's daily onboard newspaper "Australia Today". The paper comprises four A4 pages printed from News on Board services via TEAMtalk Satellite. Anything from our part of the world, the Southern Ocean, generates animated conversation. Two Sea Shepherd Conservation Society members from the ship the 'Steve Irwin' boarded the Japanese ship the Yushin Maru No 2 to deliver a letter to the captain advising him that he was illegally killing whales in the Southern Whale Sanctuary. They were promptly taken into custody on the ship, where they remain. Notions of law at sea were bandied about at lunch along with the practicalities of regulation, prosecution, anarchy and foolhardiness. Opinion was divided....
Sunday, 13 January 2008 08:11
Mending the nets.
We are amongst some very dramatic icebergs at various stages of decay. There are lots of crazy triangular tilts, some long tabulars, many with massive glowing caves, decaying fringes and yawning cracks. Sharing the stage is the backdrop of the Antarctic continent. We steam parallel to it all day and because it might be my last glimpse I'm up and down to the bridge for regular good long looks. The ship is a fascinating combination of complex and traditional technologies. Take the 'French beam trawl' which is doing so much of the benthic work. In the end it's just a four and a bit metre long lump of wood with a 35 centimetre frame to keep the mouth of a ten metre long prawn net open to the catch. Sounds simple, but it's a workhorse that needs...
Calendar of Events
Fri, 07 May 2010IPY Monthly Report: May 2010
Tue, 30 Mar 2010IPY Report: April 2010
Wed, 03 Mar 2010IPY Report: March 2010
Tue, 02 Feb 2010IPY Report: February 2010
Thu, 21 Jan 2010IPY Oslo Science Conference -...
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Thu, 16 Dec 2010Missatge 10: Un cervell realment...
Wed, 15 Dec 2010Ice Core Goes on Display...
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Tue, 14 Dec 2010Missatge 9: Les peculiaritats de...
Mon, 13 Dec 2010Another Use for Antarctic Icebergs?