South Pacific marine ecosystems Archives - State of the Planet

Zeroing in on Life Around a Hydrothermal Vent

Vicki Ferrini has spent a lot of time working on mapping the ocean floor, and now she’s sailing in the South Pacific to get a closer look.

by |April 13, 2016

Adapting to the Unexpected

I grew up outside of Chicago and I wasn’t a Boy Scout, so sometimes I feel like I missed out on learning the type of practical—albeit rarely used—skills that would have garnered merit badges. Now that I’m nearing the conclusion of my fourth research expedition at sea, I think I have amassed a few badge-worthy tricks.

by |March 24, 2015

Sampling up a Storm

I’m writing from where L’Atalante is currently parked, 18S 170W, right in the middle of a giant, anomalously high sea surface chlorophyll patch. Such a high concentration of chlorophyll—a pigment that helps photosynthetic organisms harvest energy from sunlight, and the one that’s responsible for the green color of plants—can mean but one thing in the ocean: a phytoplankton bloom.

by |March 16, 2015

Navigating the South Pacific Using DNA

I’ve never been good at navigating. When I come out of the subway I invariably turn the wrong direction, even though I already have my nose buried in Google Maps, and then walk around the block to save face.

by |March 10, 2015

A Swirling Stew of Trichodesmium

Greetings from the center of that eddy I mentioned in my last post! We’ve been here for five days so far, but tomorrow we are finally moving on.

by |March 9, 2015

Trichodesmium is Everywhere!

We have completed the first two stations of the OUTPACE cruise and we are steaming to Station 3. By noon tomorrow we should be in the center of an eddy that our colleagues back on dry land have used satellite data to identify.

by |March 5, 2015

OUTPACE Cruise: Setting Sail

The OUTPACE 2015 cruise has set sail on February 20! We left port in Nouméa at 8:30 a.m. last Friday morning. I lost sight of land around 10 a.m. or so, and I won’t see it again until we return to port in Papeete, Tahiti on April 3.

by |March 3, 2015

Bonjour de Nouméa!

Scientists from research institutions around the world are participating in a research expedition aboard the R/V L ‘Atalante to study how microorganisms in the South Pacific Ocean influence the carbon cycle. Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory graduate student Kyle Frischkorn is among them; this is the first in a series of posts in which Kyle shares what it’s like to do research at sea.

by |February 18, 2015