7 weeks 2 days
Underway Geophysics During transit to Tahiti
Submitted by Heather Barnes on Mon, 09/27/2010 - 01:42
Transit to Tahiti – yes I said Tahiti! From Victoria, BC, Canada to Tahati, French Polynesia.
Have I mentioned how much I love this job. This has to be one of the best jobs on the planet!
Our current location is N 22deg 45’, W 135deg 51’, speed 11.5kts. Tonight there was a ‘green flash’ during sun set, actually a double green flash, but I missed it…6 years at sea and I have yet to see this ‘green flash’. Steve Prinz (ALO onboard) says he may have caught it on camera – if so I will post it for all to see.
The most exciting event onboard the ship right now is the deployment of a new magnetometer. Erik Moortgat (Marine Specialist, Underway Geophysics) provided us with a little background information on the new ‘Maggie’ (the onboard nick name for the magnetometer is Maggie - personification always helps us techs relate better to any instrument).
“The marine magnetometer (Seaspy, from Marine Magnetics Corp) measures the ambient magnetic field using a specialized branch of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance technology (Overhauser principles) applied specifically to hydrogen nuclei. The towfish (orange tube) is a pressurized vessel that contains the sensor and electronics. It is towed about 450m behind the vessel to eliminate the affects from the ship. The sensor has no dead zone, meaning it will produce great results, regardless of the direction of the ambient magnetic field. You can survey in any direction, anywhere in the world, without worrying about aligning the sensor to the Earths field.”
The Maggie being lowered into the ocean
Maggie being towed by JOIDES Resolution
Only another 2532.3 nm to go until we reach Tahiti. I imagine myself like James Cook when he sailed to Tahiti in the late 1700’s onboard the HMS Resolution, well, not quite the same…
HMS Resolution,1773, Tahiti, Matavai Bay, painting by William Hodges