Log Post: Expanding Mariana Trench Perspectives

In December, Falkor returned to the Mariana Trench for research that complemented the November expedition, and built on work that began during explorer and director James Cameron’s 2012 DEEPSEA CHALLENGER expedition.

News: Strong Connections

New Satellite Service Means Improved Research and Outreach Satellite internet connections have become both common and essential for research vessels, but their use can involve challenges ranging from slow connections to insufficient satellite coverage in remote regions. In an effort to minimize such issues while maximizing research and outreach capabilities, Schmidt Ocean Institute has just … Continued

Log Post: At the End of the Journey

The cruise is over.  30 busy days at sea finished. We have completed the first ever comprehensive study of the ocean’s greatest depths. Unlike earlier studies which targeted the Challenger deep we sampled the whole cross section of the trench. 92 lander stations were conducted between about 5000 and 10,600 meters. It was a lander … Continued

News: R/V Falkor Shares Her Name with Newly Discovered Underwater Mountain

This week Schmidt Ocean Institute announced that Falkor Seamount has been officially documented through the International Hydrographic Organization and UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission.. PALO ALTO, CA – The seamount, or underwater mountain, is likely millions of years old, but went undiscovered until last year. Revealed by Schmidt Ocean Institute’s research vessel Falkor last November, the underwater mountain was found during an expedition to … Continued

Log Post: Sharing the Passion

We will all be heading home in a day or two. Often the person that I sit beside on a plane will ask companionably where I’m headed or what I have been doing in the place I’m leaving.  Mostly my travels are related to work, so the next question is, “What kind of science do … Continued

Log Post: Where Are We, Where Are We Going

Marine Technician Jimbo (Paul Duncan) has spent all night, every night, for 24 nights keeping the Falkor’s multibeam sonar operational and recording data. The sonar sends “pings” of sound to the sea floor.  The pings bounce back.  The length of time between sending and receiving can be converted to depth.  Each pulse sends over 400 … Continued

Log Post: The Deepest Living Animals

The Sirena Deep: it’s 10,700 m (6.6 miles) deep and largely unexplored. Yesterday on the Falkor we successfully retrieved three landers from Sirena. The Rock Grabber had mud and water samples for studies on geology, microbes, nutrient cycling, and so on. The Wee Trap had another grabber with mud, and baited traps with animals. The hadal … Continued

Log Post: Who Cares

In this trench business we are often asked things like “what benefit does this have to society” and “who cares?”. Those who ask, “who cares?” should not be spending time reading blogs like these.  However, the answer to the former is two-fold: Why not explore it? First, there are still some fractions of society who … Continued

Log Post: Everything Including the Kitchen Sink (and Refrigerator)

Science at sea is not just science, but rather a cooperative effort between science, endurance, and creativity.  Imagine that you are going to be on a tiny floating island for a long time with whatever equipment you think to pack. It would be, and is, quite challenging trying to anticipate everything you will need, and … Continued