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Last updated: Wednesday, 16. April 2014 22:26 UTC   Local time GMT -3

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 VP8CMH/MM is QRV.  Current Grid GD. Next grids:   GE.  Operating on 14038kHz or 18087kHz at about 20z and 00z daily.  Keep an eye on the DX cluster for latest operating periods.

Wednesday has been,  mainly, foggy.  This has meant that there has been little to see or report on.  There is a theory that when the ship is shrouded in fog,  just out of sight there are hundreds of whales leaping and jumping,  but this has yet to be proved.

This morning our communications link was cut.  All the equipment on board was working correctly and the satellite link to the UK looked good.  The problem was most likely damage to the cable that links the Land Earth Station (in Aberdeen) to the network in Cambridge.  I was beginning to think we would be without the link overnight but it suddenly burst back into life late into our afternoon,  so someone was working late to get it back in order in the UK.  Fortunately this does not happen very often,  but it shows that our link to the outside world is far from guaranteed and periods of outage are to be expected.

The fog did lift once or twice and the sun did shine,  alas not for long.  During one of the brief spells of visibility I managed to snap a Wandering Albatross having a rest on the sea beside the ship.

The science has continued throughout the day with a number of CTD stations.  Yesterday I was allowed to 'fire'  one of the CTD bottles,  sending a signal down the wire to the CTD frame that released the two end caps on the bottle and thus collecting a sample of water for the scientists. 

One of the nice things about working with different teams of scientists and the various sorts of work that they do,  is that during meal times odd things can crop up and suddenly be a very interesting topic to talk about.  This evening at dinner (which was not very well attended due to either work,  sleep or circuit training) the word 'sparge' was used.  I did not have a clue as to what this was or what it meant,  and so was told that sparging in the context used is bubbling gas through a liguid using a sparge glass (a container used for the purpose of sparging).  Last month I took a picture of the equipment in the Main Lab with Jim and Siobhan.  At the time I also took a picture of the sparge glass.

The sparge glass with lots of bubbles passing through it.

I then decided to see what the Oxford English Dictionary said:  Chiefly TECHNICAL V.  Moisten by sprinkling with water,  especially in brewing.  So,  I wonder if there is more than science going on in the Main Lab??

If you have a look at the Dartcom Satellite Image for today you will see that it goes as far north as Montevideo,  which used to be a regular port of call for the BAS ships in years gone by and was an excellent run ashore.   If you look at the mouth to the river Plate,  which takes you to Buenos Aires and Frey Bentos,  you will see a discolouration of the water.  This is due to the silt coming down the river and being dumped into the sea. 

The count for wildlife yesterday was nineteen different species spotted,  but this has dropped dramatically down to five today,  although we have only travelled some 185 miles in the past twenty-four hours.

Snapshot of the NavMet image from the Underway Instruments on board the James Clark Ross.

For those of you who enjoyed the Podcast interview I gave in the summer,  there has been an addition.  A few weeks ago,  whilst still in Antarctica I gave a second interview and this can be heard HERE

The scientist on board just now are writing a blog and this can be found HERE.   This blog will also hopefully give a better insight to the science work that is being carried out during the cruise.

If you have a moment please check out some of the Google adverts below.  Thank-you.

The Daily Menu is back,  click HERE to view the latest feast onboard




Mike Gloistein
gm0hcq @ gm0hcq.com

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