NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard NOAA Ship Rainier
July 12 – 22, 2005
Mission: Hydrographic Survey
Geographical Area: North Pacific, Gulf of Alaska
Date: July 16, 2005
Winds: Southwest at 20 knots
Waves: 7 feet
By tonight, the winds should become totally west at 20 knots the wave height should drop to 6 feet.
Science and Technology Log
We have finally gotten across the Gulf of Alaska and tomorrow will begin some real work again. We entered the Shelikoff Strait and will proceed toward the vicinity of the Semidi Islands. Our goal is to reach Mitrofania Island by Tuesday morning.
The Plotting Room on the NOAA ship RAINIER
Today I spent my day in the Plotting Room with one of the navigators named Brent. He showed me how they use the information we accumulated on July 13 while on Launch #5 in Barrows Bay. On that day we were surveying two different sections by the multi-line sensors. As the beams were sent out, they recorded whatever was in the water and on the bottom to the computer on the launch. This information was also transmitted to the proper program on a computer on the RAINIER. Now the technologists, interns, scientists and engineers analyze the information as it appears on the computer screens. Daily, already programmed into the computer, are the variations that will change such as the tides, currents and temperatures. In this way, the information is as accurate as possible. By observing the screens, the scientists, plotters and hydrographers can chart the depths, obstacles,(such as crab pots or rocks), temperatures and currents. All of this information is plotted on paper charts for all navigators and ship captains, whether their ships are owned by the United States, commercial enterprises or private sailors.
The men and women who do this work have varied backgrounds and education. Some are mechanical engineers, geography scientists, geologist, interns and college students who are learning hydrography.
That’s it from the RAINIER JoAnne Kronberg Teacher-at-Sea