Participate in a Live Video Broadcast with the JR in May!

It’s not too late! If your classroom or school would like to participate in a 30-minute, live ship-to-shore video broadcast with us during the current expedition of the JOIDES Resolution, there’s still time! No matter where in the world you are, we can schedule a broadcast with you. 

Expedition 335 "Superfast Spreading Rate Crust 4" will continue until June 3, 2011, and we can hold video broadcasts through Monday, May 30. We only need a minimum of a few days’ notice (more time is always good, but not essential) to schedule a broadcast and make it happen.

 

 

[Outreach Officer Sarah Saunders kicks off a recent video broadcast to 5th graders in Michigan; Photo by Benoit Ildefonse]
 
Our scientists are working around the clock, 900 kilometers off the coast of Costa Rica in the Pacific Ocean to help us all better understand how the Earth works. See firsthand how scientific ocean drilling works,…
 
 
[Showing viewers the drilling rigfloor; Photo by Benoit Ildefonse]
 
get your questions answered by scientists working on the expedition,..
 
 
[Scientists Jeffrey Alt and Marguerite Godard speak with students in Michigan; Photo by Benoit Ildefonse]
 
…and learn what it’s like to spend six weeks at sea!
 
 
[Scientists enjoy a barbeque on the ship; Photo by Bill Crawford]
 
Here’s how Tony Morris, one of the scientists participating in Expedition 335, described the video broadcast opportunity to a teacher at his son’s school in England:
 
 
"It is indeed possible to have a ship to shore video link, and we have a public outreach officer, Sarah Saunders, on board the ship who is looking for exactly these sorts of links from the science staff.
 
I’m on board the JOIDES Resolution, which is a specialist research vessel designed to enable geologists to collect rock and sediment samples from the world’s oceans. It is run under a major international research program called the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, which represents the single, largest collaborative research endeavour in the Earth Sciences ever to have been assembled…
 
We are engaged in IODP Expedition 335, which is trying to drill a long section through the Earth’s ocean crust in the Pacific. Each expedition is between 6-8 weeks long and this is the fourth expedition to this particular drill hole. The first three expeditions successfully drilled through the upper oceanic crust and just into the lower crust. We are now poised to deepen this hole even further (it’s currently about 1500m below the seafloor, and is covered by 3.5 kilometers of seawater, so the technological and engineering challenges are immense).
 
This is the only place in the world where we have been able to recover samples of the lower oceanic crust in its normal (in situ) position (samples have been collected from some other locations where the lower crust has been brought near the surface by tectonic activity, but these may not be representative of normal crust). Given that oceanic crust represents 2/3rds of the Earth’s crust, we know surprisingly little about it – hence the need for these major scientific efforts to obtain representative samples for analysis.
 
On board are teams of ship’s officers, engineers, drillers and caterers, alongside a 33-member strong science party (including two outreach officers) drawn from nations around the world (USA, Japan, UK, France, Germany, Korea, Australia, India, the Netherlands, and the Philippines).
 
 
[Tony Morris (in the middle) takes a break with friends aboard the JR; photo by Mark Kurz]
 
The ship houses a state-of-the-art suite of laboratory facilities, and as rock drill cores are recovered onto the ship from more than 5 kilometers below sea-level they are scientifically described and analysed using a range of techniques. The ship operates 24/7 and so the science party (and everyone else) operate on a shift system – there’s no break in activities for the full time of the expedition. It’s a high pressure working environment, but there is a very strong collegiate sense pervading the whole ship’s party, creating a fantastically positive atmosphere.
 
I hope that this information is useful, and that we can set up a video link sometime in coming days/weeks to discuss with the students at the school what we are doing on this expedition!"
 
 
 
To learn more about how you can participate in a live ship-to-shore video broadcast with the JOIDES Resolution during our current expedition, click here.
 
If this sounds like something you’d like to schedule for your university or school classroom, then email Sarah Saunders, Outreach Officer for Expedition 335, at jrs_saunders@ship.iodp.tamu.edu. Video broadcast requests are taken on a first-come, first-served basis, so don’t wait!