Deep Sea Diary: Day 2

We are out at sea on the Atlantis having left port at 9am and I cannot wait to share the edited photographs of this adventure, about 1,500 so far but that includes stop action which is a lot of frames.

Woods Hole, NSF, Duke Marine Lab, Oregon Institute of Marine Biology and NC State are all involved in Collaborative Research: Connectivity in Western Atlantic Seep Populations. At 2pm Eastern Standard Time we had the first sonar reading that indicates a 300 foot mud volcano at longitude 13 degrees 27.954 decimal minutes and latitude 59 degrees 15.5410 decimal minutes. We are in the computer room and Laura Brothers, a geologist from USGS, is mapping the ocean floor. This is the first time that this mud volcano has been seen. Material coming out of the ground from deep within the earth causes these on the ocean floor. We are in an age of discovery and we know more about Mars’ surface than we do about the deep sea.

Laura is the scientist that I am working with this week. I am mapping with watercolor the visual information as it becomes available and she can correct any mistakes in my interpretation. We have had many science and ship safety drills and meet with the Jason Crew at 3:30. At 10 pm tonight we will slow down to map for seeps to prepare for a dive. My shift is night.

55 people are on board. Scientists, artists, crew, and the Jason team. A lot of people are studying microbes. There are microscopes and places to store the creatures brought up. I am painting these too. They are so loveable, these larvae and adult mussels, clams and tubeworms.

Lastly, as soon as I came on board JT, 2nd Engineer was playing guitar and I found that there is one for me to use. Immediately Ronnie, also crew and an amazing musician, and I found some common ground. Later scientist and folk singer, Cliff, came with his Martin. We jammed til time for sleep.

Gotta go learn more. Tell Dr. Sperry I am very happy.

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