Joint Cruise Meeting for NBP01-03 and LMG01-04

Punta Arenas, Chile

19 April 2001

Eileen Hofmann began the joint cruise meeting by welcoming everyone. Because many people had not yet met one another, she asked everyone to introduce him/herself. The majority of the scientists from both ships and many of the Raytheon Polar Services people were present at the meeting. Following introductions, Peter Wiebe (chief scientist for NBP01-03) gave a brief overview of the proposed sampling plan for the NBP01-03 survey cruise. He showed the proposed survey grid and indicated the proposed sites for the process studies. Wiebe next went over the calculated times for running the survey grid and discussed possible options for modifying the timing. These involved dropping some stations (with scientific justification) and perhaps not doing all activities at each station. These options are to be used if the survey cruise gets behind schedule due to bad weather or equipment problems. Wiebe next brought up the special activities that would take place on the NBP01-03 cruise after the survey grid is completed. These are:

  1. deployment of two Automatic Weather Stations,
  2. sea beam surveys of the bathymetry in the vicinity of the current meter moorings deployed during the previous Gould cruise and in Marguerite Bay,
  3. a krill patch study that tests strobe lights on the MOCNESS,
  4. biological and physical mapping of the canyon extending into Marguerite Bay and the region of Circumpolar Deep Water intrusions, and
  5. reoccupying sites of interest.
One other activity is to rendezvous with the German vessel, Polarstern, to transfer Debbie Thiele (IWC scientist) to the N.B. Palmer. This transfer will likely take place in the northern part of the survey grid during the first 1.5 weeks of the cruise. Wiebe then asked if there were questions about the survey cruise.

Torres (chief scientist for LMG01-04) next gave an overview of the process cruise. He showed the five proposed process sites and went over the rationale behind choosing the sites. He indicated that the site locations are flexible and can be modified once the environmental and biological conditions become better known. Torres next discussed the suite of activities that would take place at the process sites and again indicated that these would likely be modified once the conditions became better known. Torres then asked for questions.

The next discussion focused on joint ship operations that would occur after the survey grid is complete and after the process site work is done. A suggested joint operation was testing of the strobe lights on the MOCNESS on the N.B. Palmer and L.M. Gould. This would provide a good assessment of how effective the strobe light system is in increasing the ability of the nets to catch Antarctic krill. Other joint ship operations might consist of the N.B. Palmer doing a fine scale survey grid in the vicinity of the L.M. Gould. Again, Wiebe and Torres stressed that this is flexible and will be worked out once things are better known.

Following the cruise overviews, each scientific group was asked to briefly explain their science objectives for the cruise and to make known any special needs they may have in order to meet their science objectives.  Issues such as the need to find animals (e.g., krill, seals, and penguins) and the need to put small boats over the side for some activities (e.g., whale biopsy and diving) were brought up and discussed. Wiebe and Torres assured everyone that they would make every effort to ensure that the individual science objectives were met.

Hofmann next introduced Mark Christmas, a reporter from National Geographic, who would be going on the N.B. Palmer cruise. (Christmas was filming the pre-cruise meeting.) Christmas explained to everyone about the web site that National Geographic was developing for the cruise and encouraged everyone to tell others about it. He said that the web site would become live once the ships sailed. He also said that he would be talking with various people throughout the cruise and would appreciate feedback for the dispatches that he would be sending to National Geographic for posting on the web site.

Hofmann next introduced Aparna Sreenivasan, who is a science writer from the University of California-Santa Cruz. She will also be on the N.B. Palmer and will be writing stories about the cruise activities for posting on the National Science Foundation web site. All cruise participants were encouraged to talk with her about their work.

Wiebe next asked if there were any "show stoppers" that needed to be dealt with before the ships left port. Some issues with winches and equipment (acoustic problems) were brought up. The Raytheon representatives said that these were being worked on and should be fixed by the time the ships sail.  Wiebe next explained the need to keep an event log on each ship and briefly explained what this involved. He then mentioned ship-to-ship communications and the need to keep informed about what each was doing. One suggestion was that the times for electronic mail transfers for the two ships be staggered so that responses to questions could be obtained in a timely manner. This was agreed to be a good a good idea and would be implemented on the cruises.

The final item for discussion was general responsibility for tasks. Alice Doyle from Raytheon Polar Services went over the various responsibilities for the Raytheon people on the two cruises. She said that they were on the cruises to help make them a success and encouraged everyone to talk with the Marine Project Coordinator on the two cruises (Doyle for NBP01-03 and Skip Owen for LMG01-04) as well as the other Raytheon technical support people.  Hofmann then asked if there were any other issues. There being none, the meeting was adjourned.