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23 May 2009 – continue SATURN-01 survey, begin SATURN-03 survey.

Currents during strong ebb tide were too much for our sampling system, and we were forced to suspend sampling for several hours in the early morning.  Misty Blakely sampled every hour for chlorophyll, nutrients, and TDN/P.  We sampled for a full suite of chemistry and nucleic acids at 0200 (s,b), 0600 (s,m,b), 1100 (b), 1120 (s,m,b), 1200 (b), 1430 (b,m,s), and 1630 (b,m,s).

  • 22 May 2009 – Continue plume feature tracking, begin SATURN-01 survey.

    The plume feature tracking exercise continued until 1100.  We collected water samples for the micro baseline sample set at four depths at stations PLT-7 (cast 85, 0100), PLT-13 (cast 91, 0600), and PLT-18 (cast 96, 1100).  We also collected water at PLT-13 for a primary production measurement and for Florian Moeller’s ammonia oxidation experiments. 

    21 May 2009 – Personnel exchange at Tongue Point

    In the morning we docked at the Job Corp docks on the east side of Tongue Point. One of the crew on the New Horizon had attended school at Tongue Point, and with that connection we were able to secure permission to dock.This saved the project thousands of dollars, which is what it would have cost to dock at the Astoria city docks. Our hosts gave permission for our science crew to take a short walk around campus.

    20 May 2009 – Beaver Army Dock and salt gradient survey

    At daybreak we left the anchorage for a journey up river to the Beaver Army Dock at river mile 53. When we arrived we conducted a CTD cast, collected water, and returned to the estuary to complete the salt gradient survey. We conducted several CTD casts in the south channel near the town of Hammond and collected water at salinities of 10, 25, and 17.

    We then returned to the anchorage for the night.

    19 May 2009 – 100m Isobath survey

    We conducted CTD casts at stations along the 100m isobath (QRLP-a, QR-19, GHQR-a, GH-21, WBGH-a, WB-19, CRWB-a). Water was collected at GHQR-a for a primary production measurement, and at several other stations for methane measurements and analysis with the Flow-cam. We crossed the bar into the Columbia River estuary around 1700 and stopped near the SATURN-03 station to conduct CTD casts for a salt gradient survey.

    18 May 2009 – La Push Line

    On our way to the LaPush line we stopped at 0651 at 47deg37.73, -125deg36.865 to collect water for a primary production measurement. We then continued our journey and began sampling the LaPush line at Station LP-52 at 0943. At this station we collected water from three depths (B, M, S) for the standard suite of chemical, biological and nucleic acid samples. I collected a bottom sample for filtration onto a 142 mm diameter 0.2um filter for RNA.

    17 May 2009 – Third dye study

    We spent the night searching in vain for the dye from dye study #2, and decided to conduct another dye release. At 1100, dye was released from the Point Sur in a ring shape at the same location as the last release.  This time, however, it was released in lower salinity water later during the ebb tide.

    16 May 2009 - Second dye study

    A second dye release was conducted several miles north of station CR-15 at 1100. It was released in a ring with a 1 mile diameter. After deploying the dye and taking our first water samples, both ships lost track of the dye location and began searching. The Point Sur used an undulating mini-bat CTD with a fluorometer attached. The New Horizon searched with fluorometers attached to the surface water flow-through system and to the CTD rosette. The dye was released just before a strong ebb, and the drifter we deployed seemed to be caught in the freshwater plume and moved many miles to the WNW. However, a particle tracking model predicted that the dye would move to the south.

    15 May 2009 – End the first dye study and wait for the second.

    We collected water from the dye plume again at 0400, sampling at 9 m (below the dye) and at 6 m (within the dye).  This station was numbered dye06.  We then sampled at four points to the N, S, E, and W of this station dye06 at a distance of 1 mile.  We did not detect dye at these other stations.  We then lost track of the dye, as did the Point Sur.  We decided to move the ship to station CR-30 and wait until morning to start the next dye study. 

    14 May 2009 – Finish Columbia River line and start dye studies.

    Morning came and the seas did not improve much. The Point Sur is in the area riding out the storm with us. Forecasts call for better conditions in the afternoon. Keep your fingers crossed!


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