Windy and Rainy
25 deg 20.3S
Longitude: 70 deg 02.3E
Wind Direction: SSE
Wind Speed: 25 Knots
Sea State 4
Swell(s) Height: 15-18 Foot
Sea Temperature: 79°F (26.1°C)
Barometric Pressure: 1014.0 MB
Visibility: 5 Nautical Miles
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Daily Update: Sharks and stormy seas
By Amy Nevala
lab received the alert just after breakfast.
is a shark off the bow, starboard side, said geologist
Susan Humphris, who has a sharp eye for spotting birds and
fish. Her call sent us racing to the ships forward
deck, arriving in time to see the sharks cement-colored
shadow swish near the surface, then fade into the sea foam.
people have spied the whitetip oceanic sharks swimming near Knorr,
likely drawn to our food waste. The deep water species rarely
goes close to shore and can grow up to 12 feet.
sharks pose no danger to us, since we do not swim in these waters.
When someone on Knorr spots a shark, it often draws a camera-carrying
crowd eager for a look at these graceful, powerful creatures.
Todays stormy seas were equally amazing to watch. With 15
to 18 foot waves rolling into Knorr, we careened down hallways
and ladders, bumping shoulders into walls and straining to open
the heavy doors when the tilting ship and gravity pulled them the
opposite way. Today in the galley we ate off plates stuck to the
tables with rubber mats and kept one hand on our sliding beverages.
Second Mate Doug Mayer said the winds and white-capped
seas stem from a large, high pressure area to our south that is
trying to fill the gaps of a small, low pressure area in the north.
The meeting of these weather systems interrupts the constant Southeast
Trade Winds of the Southern Hemisphere, which are blowing stronger
than usual with winter descending on this half of the world.
Within 72 hours, Doug predicts that these squally
conditions will diminish based on the weather reports we have received
from South Africa, Réunion
Island, the US Navy in Japan, and NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Todays weather made Jasons delicate sampling at the vents impossible
at our present location, so rather than just sit around and twiddle our
thumbs, we decided to go where we can do other research, said geologist
we have a bumpy seven-hour, 85-nautical mile journey north to
24°00S 69°40E, our first research site. Nine
days ago we left a current meter mooring in a spot where hydrothermal
plumes were identified by previous expeditions and our initial
Tomorrow we will release the current meter from its mooring. The data we gather
will help us measure the speed and direction of ocean currents in this area of
the Central Indian Ridge. This will help us to understand which direction the
hydrothermal plumes drift, offering another clue to the vents location
on the seafloor.
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