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Journals 2004/2005

Catherine Roberts
Western Branch Middle School, Chesapeake, VA

"Study of frontal zones in
the vicinity of Cape Hatteras"

R/V Cape Henelopen
July 31 - August 14, 2004
Journal Index:
July 28/31

August 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9

          10 - 11 - 12 - 13 - 14

August 4, 2004
On the High Seas

2400. We are steaming to our first grid site in the Atlantic off the coast of Bodie Island (a small North Carolina Barrier Island). Bodie Island was named because during the Civil War it was the island the currents and waves carried the dead bodies to.

The day began with three Spotted Dolphins swimming alongside the ship. Today was spent launching a buoy to record temperature, current ,and wind speed; small buoys with tidbit thermometers to record temperature at 5 meter depth intervals; and ADCP (Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler) moorings to measure sea height. Each mooring and buoy has weights attached to anchor it in place. The data will be collected and saved within the electronics of the buoys and moorings. In two weeks we will recover the moorings by signaling it to drop the weight releasing a buoy to float at the surface which can then be grabbed to pull the mooring aboard. The large buoy with the 1000 pound weight went in well. That's a lot of delicate equipment and heavy weight to maneuver in five foot waves. The next down, the ADCP caused some problems. It was difficult to tell when it hit the bottom and was important that it land right side up since it was pinging off the surface to determine sea surface height. It took three tries in very bumpy seas to get it right. The next three buoys with the tidbit thermometers went well; just a matter of carefully tossing them in. The last two ADCP also went in well. The last watch finished up around 2300.

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