donderdag 20 maart 2014

Rough start...

We did not really have the kind of beginning of the survey we were wishing for, or we might just have gotten spoiled by the unbelievably nice weather last year...

Due to some mechanical challenges we had to start a couple of hours later than expected from Scheveningen, there were even moments where we thought we might not be able to sail out at all given the problems we were eperiencing with our gear box (and some additional technical problems I don't bother to get into here for now...).

Luckily due to the hard work of the mechanics and engineers we are floating through the storm and breaking the waves, with our 2 engines at full throttle at the moment and are hoping to arrive in Galway tomorrow evening.

Besides the technical difficulties the weather is not playing nice either, providing us with wave heights up to 6 m, and severe weather warnings for the entire area...

These delays, coupled with the severe weather conditions will not allow us to calibrate our acoustic equipment prior to the start of the survey, as it is very important that we reach our transect on time on Monday, in order to assure that we will be well synchronised with the other participating vessels. This means that we will have to try to calibrate during the survey, whenever time and weather allow for it and we will still have a post-survey calibration. But more importantly we will have to hope that our equipment survives the rough weather well, which is always a bit of a gamble in this area during this time of the year, if one is using a towed body (platform towed alongside the ship, containing our acoustic equipment). Basically if a cable or a transducer  breaks or malfunctions and no prior calibration is available, the data will be more or less useless...If the equipment performs well throughout the survey, applying the calibration information from after or during the survey to the entire dataset will not be a problem...So fingers crossed...

1 opmerking:

  1. Hey Sven,
    It looks like you've got some good weather coming your way in a couple of days so I think it will be a nice calm survey in the end, I hope. I'm actually going to Ireland next week for a drive up the coast, I'll keep my eyes peeled for you guys ;).
    Good luck to you all, I hope your equipment will hold strong and if you need any mesopelagics identifying just snap a foto and send it on and I'll see what I can do.