CD 157: Investigating the submarine canyons offshore Portugal


Daily diary

Sunday 30th May 2004

Weather : Warm, light cloud with sunshine, winds F3-4, gentle swell 

Main achievement

First the bad news, once the cable had been wound back onto the drum the transmission fault re-appeared. This means that any data sent back along the optical fibre will be of very low quality. At least it has been tested and time can be saved later.

Veit and Ruth working on one of the first cores

The night watch, including Elena, cut and recorded some cores taken from the previous survey cruise.

The first piston coring tube was set up. This involves fixing 6m steel tubes to a large weight, inserting a plastic liner into the tubes and then attaching an end fitting, the core cutter, which prevents all of the sample falling out on its journey back to the surface. All of this is done on a special rig set up on the side of the ship.

Belinda has recovered from her sea sickness after two days in her cabin.



Elena and I visited the bridge where we met Peter Reynolds who was in charge of the watch at that time. You can read about what goes on there and how to become a ship’s navigator under  Peter’s  profile [coming soon!].

Steak for tea! The catering staff really do an excellent job keeping us all fed. Look out for our description of the galley and its crew.



Patience and forbearance seem to be necessary virtues for survival. We have made the most of the long journey from Santa Cruz to the sample site.

The hardest job of the day, by Sara...

Confused about the time of the day, the day of the week… working on rota means that you sleep short periods a couple of times a day, waking up always involves thinking about the next meal, is it breakfast, lunch or dinner? After today’s siesta I better make sure not falling out of my bunk bed, I do my caterpillar impression and slide out of bed with a final jump to the desk where I almost crush my mobile, then a few steps down, this is definitely the hardest and most risky job carried out by scientists at sea!

Sara gracefully demonstrates the best way to roll out of your bunk in the morning...

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October 2003
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