JC007: Drilling the Mid-Atlantic Ridge


Cruise diary

Day 3: Wednesday 7 March - Passage to sample area
Position at midnight: 24º20N, 25º29W

The morning watch was quiet with scientists mostly concentrating on setting up computing equipment as well as making records of the ship’s position and speed, and other important readings. At about 02.00GMT depth profile data showed that we were passing over an elevated area, which may have been a submerged volcano, or seamount.  The second watch continued with the recordings and observed the XBT deployment, this instrument measures the sound velocity profile, similarly to the SVP we used yesterday. The XBT has the advantage of being used whilst the ship is in motion whereas the SVP requires the ship to stop.  

We spent much of the afternoon marvelling and being slightly bemused by the huge media coverage our cruise is attracting from the worlds media.  Our three leading scientists Roger, Chris and Bram have been fielding phone calls and interview requests all day, just to mention a few articles…..CNN, Science American.com, Caribbean News, The Times, The Taipei Times, and the list goes on!  There appears to have been some crossed wires along the way as to what the science of the cruise is, primarily that there is a gaping hole in the ocean crust, as exciting as that would be, in fact the upper layers of the ocean crust are missing leaving the lower oceanic crust units and mantle rocks exposed at the seafloor.  We have also received hundreds of questions through the website so please bear with us as we work through them all, unfortunately we won't be able to answer all of them as much as we would like to.  On behalf of all the scientific team we would like to thank everyone who has wished us good luck and a safe journey - so far it seems to be working!

The day ended with some dolphin watching off the aft deck.  

Quote of the Day:
Jack to Kay: “Keep us in suspenders until tomorrow!”

Chris and Sam hard at work in the lab

Chris pores over maps of the seafloor

Bram monitors progress

"Of course I know where we are...."

Chris poses next to the magnetometer

Preparation and deplyment of the Sound Velocity Profiler (SVP) - essential for making sure the bathymetry adata is as accurate as possible

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February 2007