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1 July, 2001

Settling in to Ship Schedule

Sunday, 1 July 2001

God Moron! (Good Morning!)

Life on Board

Breakfast is served every morning from 7:30 to 8:30. The typical Scandinavian breakfast consists of bread, cheese, tomatoes, cucumbers, and sliced cold meats. They also have hardboiled eggs which the Scandinavians top with caviar (fish egg) paste. Luckily, they always have an assortment of dry cereals and milk as well. One interesting thing is that at every table you can hear several different languages being spoken including Swedish, Norwegian, German, and English.

Every Sunday for dinner, everyone is expected to dress up even though we are still eating in the regular mess hall. Women are expected to wear a dress or skirt, and men must wear a tie. The Captain does this so that scientists and crew have a chance to get out of their work clothes at least once a week and act civilized. Tonight was our first ìformalî dinner and it was nice to see everyone dressed up, even though we haven't been at sea for very long.

Scientists at Work

This morning I helped one of the scientists in the Atmospheric Chemistry group move a piece of equipment from the railing on the highest deck down to a place where she could clean it in preparation for collecting data when we get into the Marginal Ice Zone (MIZ). This parcticular piece of equipment, called the Ultra Low Fog (ULF) collector, measures the number and size of fog parcticles in the air. They then analyze these parcticles for different things, one of which is bacteria. Did you know that fog can contain bacteria? They have found in previous expeditions that the bacteria count rises when it is a sunny day. Their hypothesis is that on sunny days, there is more plankton activity and photosynthesis going on in the ocean. This causes an increase in the gases produced and released which creates bubbles that rise up to the surface and burst. The bursting of these bubbles flings tiny marine bacteria up into the air and they get trapped in water molecules that were already floating around in the atmosphere. Wow!

Three more scientists were helicoptered onboard this morning starting at 4 am with more equipment. We were near enough to the Norwegian city of Bergen for the helicopter to make 3 trips back and forth. On the last trip, the helicopter, with a pilot and mechanic, settled onto the helicopter deck where it will remain for the rest of the expedition. It will be used to take scientists and their equipment out onto the ice during stops.

Where Are We Now?

We are moving north along the west coast of Norway but no land is visible. You can check the website updated by the ship at: www.polar.se although I am not sure whether it is in English or Swedish.


Dena Rosenberger

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