Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Day 9

Noon Position 30°43'58.02"N, 158°57'52.98"W
Blog 9 Tuesday 9/15/09
First, I have a correction. The sea anchor is closer to 24 feet in diameter. And I have to admit, it’s been a little bit of a preoccupation for a couple of reasons. One reason is, we are drifting trying to keep a location as best we can for the past two days so there hasn’t been a lot going on. I went out on the bow today and watched the sea anchor swim deep below the surface. (The water is that clear!) Because it has several lines that connect to the bridle and then two lines that connect it to the front of the ship (one on the starboard side another on the port side), it looks much like a huge jelly fish. The lines emulate tentacles as the parachute fills wide with water then squeezes inward and repeats the motion. I had no idea such a simple concept could hold back the 25 plus ton RV Alguita from traveling faster than a knot. Pretty cool.

The other reason why I’m trying to keep myself busy is because we’re waiting on visitors. Remember I mentioned there was a reason for holding our position. Well, one was to try the experiment that didn’t bode well and the other is, we are waiting on a special visit. They were supposed to arrive tomorrow, but due to ocean conditions it’s been delayed. Right now the sea state is working back down from a five this morning to a three. We need it to be closer to a one to make it happen. It’s all very exciting and I’ll keep you posted as the potential event unfolds.

We did have an unexpected ship sighting that was about six miles away. “Research vessel Alguita to Antonis a Gelicousis can you read me on channel 16 over?” Captain Moore sent over the airways. And after several attempts a voice came back with either a French or Asian accent, we couldn’t decide. The voice came back requesting us to change the channel to 12 so we could talk. We explained that we were doing research and were anchored making it difficult to change positions. The Captain asked where they departed from, and the voice said, “Los Angles,” then the Captain inquired about their destination, and the voice replied, “Singapore.” Each Captain wished safe travels and then it was over. Check out this picture Jeff Ernest took of it when it was six miles away. It looks like a ghost ship.

We’ve been cleaning the place up for visitors. I cleaned windows and the bathroom. Gwen vacuumed, and Bill got rid of some food supplies that didn’t make it. It’s a team sport! The Captain made the day more interesting by going out on the dingy looking for plastics. Since the sea state is still rough and we aren’t really traveling vary far, we aren’t seeing the swath of Open Ocean like we had in previous days. Not long after he left, he was back again with plastic gadgets from the sea. “Any one lose a toilet brush? How about some caulking?” Look at all the animals that live in or on the plastic pollution the Captain found, can you count them? (see the photo at the beginning of the blog)

More later.



Anonymous said...

Hey my names is Landan and I am a junior at River Ridge High School in New Port Richey, Florida. I was wondering what is the outrageous piece of plastic you have found in the ocean so far?

Austyn said...

Hello, my name is Austyn. I attend River Ridge High School as a junior and it's in New port richey, Florida. I wanted to ask you and your team what are you expecting to find out from your research?