This is my 68th science cruise as a Marine Technician and my first at the Mariana Trench –a career highlight for those who work in oceanography. However, I am not a scientist by trade and my degree isn’t in marine biology or oceanography – its computer science. My job on-board research vessel Falkor is to … Continued
Sink it—bring it up, sink it—bring it up. Sinking the equipment is fun, but bringing it back is the real thrill. A lander is a mechanical platform system that can independently hold instruments, carry tools, produce imagery, measurements, etc. for underwater observation and sampling. Every lander sinks with flotation devices and weights attached beneath it; … Continued
One hundred adult elephants standing on your head. That is about the weight you would feel at the bottom of the Mariana Trench from nearly 11,000 m (7 miles) of water above! Water’s weight creates pressure (more properly, hydrostatic pressure), one of the most important factors affecting deep-sea life. Pressure increases by 1 atmosphere (atm) … Continued
I am possibly the luckiest high school marine biology teacher on the planet. Here I am headed to the Sirena Deep with some of the most brilliant deep-sea scholars in the world. If you have not read the Team Bios, do it soon. This place reads like a Who’s Who in deep sea exploration. Dr. … Continued
Trenches fascinate me for a lot of reasons. They are the one place on Earth where geology creates the most spectacular events. Trenches form where boundaries of the huge tectonic plates on the surface of the Earth (its crust and upper mantle) collide and one plate moves down beneath another. The largest earthquakes occur in … Continued
Ocean trenches, the most hidden habitat on Earth (6000-11,000m), account for the deepest 45% of the oceans. This enigmatic environment is called the hadal zone and remains one of the least explored habitats on earth. This isn’t for lack of interest. Trenches form where one tectonic plate subducts underneath another one and the movement creates … Continued
Last night we steamed over the Mariana Trench, registering a maximum depth of 9726 meters (over 6 miles deep), by far our deepest sounding.
When I landed in Pohnpei, Micronesia for the Ontong Java expedition I was greeted by the local customs authorities in the airport.
Sometimes you have to multitask. On the 31st of October, the science party and ship’s crew of the Falkor had a series of objectives to accomplish.