CD 157: Investigating the submarine canyons offshore Portugal


Daily diary

Monday 31st May 2004

Weather; 17oC, still cloudy, slight swell

Main achievement

Great!! We got our first samples today. We pulled out the Kasten corer at about 0800hrs after a three hour journey to the bottom of the sea and back. It took us two hours to describe, bag and clean up the sample which is now stored in the hold at 4oC. The sample showed some dramatic events; three large avalanches (called turbidity currents) which have poured their sediments 250km from the coastal margin into the abyssal plain. It is very likely that the last avalanche was related to the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, which was probably the greatest seismic event in human history!

Click here to see photos of the coring activities

Winch on the side of Darwin


Seeing Fin whales (left) on Sunday evening, Doug was the first to spot them in the distance and they delighted us with their presence for a few minutes. They are the second largest animal in the planet, we identified them by their blow which is usually between four and six metres.


Quote from Doug referring to the rota system: "There is only one thing worse than staying up till 4.00am and that's getting up for 4.00am".

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October 2003
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