Day 28: Breaking, fixing

Coordinates: 72.45 N 55.48 W

Day 28 - Today's location.

Day 28 – Today’s location.

We’ve moved north in the Baffin Bay and are working hard on a deep-cast station. By and large, it hasn’t been an easy one – over the course of it, we’ve had equipment break, plans postponed, and quite a few large and small problems of various types (most of which I don’t even know about). The trace metal rosette winch broke, but the coast guard crew was very quick in fixing it, so we’re able to keep working. We woke yesterday morning to the news that the motor spinning one of the propellers was overheating, which is a rather large problem – there is one propeller on each side of the ship, and if only one works, we cannot sail straight. This delayed all operations for 12 hours while we sat and waited for the Amundsen’s engineers to troubleshoot the problem. As of this writing, the one of the two MilliQ (pure water for lab use) systems is broken, and the other is in a restricted-access zone, leading to interesting workarounds. My instrument had a rough go of it yesterday, as did one of the other underway instruments in our lab – the membrane inlet mass spectrometer – so we had quite a bit to do to try to fix them yesterday.


Dave, Clara, OSSCAR and Josef wait for samples to filter.


Samples ready for analysis.


A propeller shaft spinning – a bad thing to break!

All the small and large breakages notwithstanding, we’re more or less back on track, and headed to the Archipelago tonight, after a hearty Saturday night meal of poutine (One of the particular benefits of a Québecois ship.) We can see mountains in the distance, and fingers remain crossed for polar bear sightings.


The moon pool is a hole in the ship through which we deploy large-volume pumps.


Stefane the boatswain and crew fixing the cable.


The trace metal team leaves detailed correspondence for its collaborators.


…as does the particulate organic carbon team.


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