January 3, 2007
Because of limited computer time (only one on ship is connected to internet), I'm not sure how often I will be able to get on. Will continue to try. Today we are at site 6. Sea is calm and sun is bright. We have just begun setting out sensors and then we will begin crossing the area back and forth to determine the best coring site. Early this morning, before I got up (my shift is noon to midnight), the marine biologist apparently sited three beaked whales. I hope to get film if they show back up. Coring should begin tonight and last for about 1 day. Coring basically involves sending down three "torpedoes" into the seafloor sediment which collect sediment "mud". The mud is then divided between scientists and tested for bacterial life, chemical composition, and geological features. At the normal rate of sea floor sedimentation, the area we are in is about 20,000,000 years old. In other words, I will work with mud (and water) that is over 20,000,000 years old! Nothing else for now. Currently reading all I can on ocean sediment. Back to the reading before lab gets busy tonight.