Piggy-Back Project: Plume Tracking

InterRidge Office intridge at durham.ac.uk
Tue Nov 26 18:39:49 EST 1996


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                        INTERRIDGE ANNOUNCEMENT

             PIGGY-BACK PROJECT:  PLUME TRACKING

    Replies should be sent to Rick Thomson at rick at ios.bc.ca
    and copied to the InterRidge Office (intridge at durham.ac.uk)

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We would like to find a co-investigator who would be interested in studying
the deep flow structure downstream of a hydrothermal venting source.  A
colleague and I at the Institute of Ocean Sciences have three
satellite-tracked ALACE floats we would like to deploy in an interesting and
poorly charted region of the world ocean.  Given my interest in hydrothermal
plume and buoyancy flux estimates, I would prefer to see these profiling
drifters deployed in the vicinity of a strong but relatively shallow (< 2000
m) venting region.  For those unfamiliar with these floats, they are
programed to drift at a prescribed depth (typically less than 2 km).  They
then periodically report their position to the Service Argos
satellite-tracking system by rising to the surface.  The floats have a
built-in CTD system which provides detailed water column profiles of
temperature and salinity during each rise and sinking cycle.  The cycles use
up battery power so that for 1000 m depth, one gets 125 cycles; for 2000 m
this reduces to 62 cycles.  If we let the drifters stay down for a week or
so at a time, the data could span as much as 1 to 2 years.  We would be
ready to freight the floats anywhere in the world by April 1997 and would
pay for all costs.  All we ask is that the floats be treated well during
deployment (the ship needs to stop) and we try to find a venting source that
rises above 2000 m depth.  To get the buoyancy right, we would need to know
the temperature and salinity at the prescribed drifter depth.  We need to
decide by mid December so that we can have the manufacturer program the
drifter with the appropriate temperature and salinity values for the
prescribed depth.

For further details please contact Rick Thomson by e-mail (rick at ios.bc.ca)

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