NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard Research Vessel Hugh R. Sharp
June 8-19, 2009
Mission: Sea scallop survey
Geographical area of cruise: North Atlantic
Date: June 8, 2009
Weather Data from the Bridge
SW winds: 5-10KT
Barometric pressure: 1035 mb
Air Temperature: 75˚F
Science and Technology Log
The Research Vessel Hugh R. Sharp set sail this morning around 9AM from Lewes, DE. There are 11 members of the scientific crew and volunteers, including two TAS participants: myself (Jeff Lawrence) from Oklahoma and Duane Sanders from Ohio. We spent the morning introducing ourselves and watching safety videos in case of emergency on the ship. A ship can be an exciting yet dangerous place to work. There is no ambulance or fire department to call in case of a fire or other emergency. Each member aboard the ship is responsible for not only their own safety, but that of their shipmates also. Above is a photo of Duane and I as we don the safety immersion suits also known as the “Gumby” suit.
The suits can be difficult to don but everyone onboard is expected to know how to put the suit on effectively in case of an emergency at sea that may require us to abandon ship. The waters off the northeast coast of the U.S. can still be quite cold even in early summer and hypothermia can set in a matter of minutes.
The Research Vessel Hugh R. Sharp has set sail for a station about 60 miles due east of Lewes, Delaware. I have been on two other research vessels with the Sharp being the smallest. It is a newer ship and while quarters are quite close they are well maintained and comfortable. The day started out with sunny skies and warm winds. The further out to sea we traverse the cooler the temperature feels as the wind blows across the cooler water. We have just run into a fog bank and there is little to see at the present time.
Skies have cleared off and it is a beautiful day out in the Atlantic. We are sailing to the first station and the crew aboard is getting everything ready for the first tow. There is a lot to do on the ship even when sailing between stations. The crew has to make sure there are not structural, hardware, or software problems before we arrive at the first station. As mentioned earlier I also onboard with another Teacher at Sea participant, his name is Duane Sanders and he teaches at a school near Cincinnati, Ohio. Today has been a great start to the trip with the excellent weather and smooth sailing conditions.
Questions of the Day
What is a Sea Scallop and are there differing varieties or species?
Name three other ships that do research for NOAA.