Texas A&M University
|Winter 1998 / Spring 1999 - Vol. 6, No. 3|
Year of the Oceans
More than 100 scientists crossed thousands of miles aboard more than 10 vessels during more than 20 cruises.
You might say 1998 was "business as usual."
Since January 1, 1998 -- the beginning of the International Year of the Ocean -- Texas A&M University oceanographers have cruised thousands of miles across the world's oceans during more than 20 research cruises and (if you total the days each person spent on the sea) more than 300 "ship days."
Texas A&M oceanographers boarded more than 10 research vessels and investigated the physics, biology, chemistry and geology of the oceans from the Gulf of Mexico to the Ross Sea near Antarctica.
We've enjoyed celebrating the Year of the Ocean by conducting practical research, and, of course, we'll continue our commitment to ocean research and academics even after the end of the Year of the Ocean.
So 1999 will, again, be business as usual. If you're a student and you'd like to join the oceanography graduate program at Texas A&M University, call (409) 845-7412 for more information, or visit http://oceanography.tamu.edu.
Texas A&M's research on the ocean during 1998 included:
(Anchor = site of research by Texas A&M's Department of Oceanography within the last few years)
Graduate student Patrick Ressler oversaw MOCNESS sampling on a cruise October 19-28 in the Gulf of Maine as part of the U.S. GLOBEC Northwest Atlantic/Georges Bank study aboard the R/V Oceanus.
For five days in June, graduate student Daniel Lanier conducted vibracore/seismic research in New York Bight during a USGS cruise with participants from USGS, Woods Hole Institution of Oceanography, and Coastal Carolina University.
The seas near the Hawaiian Islands were the site of a multidisciplinary cruise May 21 to June 11. Chief scientist Dr. Niall Slowey, plus two TAMU scientists, four TAMU grad students (and five participants from other institutions) were aboard the R/V Moana Wave.
In Monterey Bay, California, Dr. Mead Allison and a TAMU graduate student conducted a coring study of optical properties of sediments during an October cruise aboard the R/V John Martin, sponsored by the Office of Naval Research.
A biological and chemical survey of the Ross Sea was planned for November 2 through December 20 aboard the Nathaniel B. Palmer. The cruise is sponsored by ROAVERRS (Research on Ocean/Atmosphere Variability and Ecosystem Response in the Ross Sea).
In August 1998, Dr. Bob Presley and Bryan Brattin conducted five one-day cruises in the Sea of Japan. Aboard the Russian ship Nostalgie, they collected sediment and organism samples for pollution monitoring.
Dr. Mead Allison and two TAMU graduate students (plus eight scientists from the Bangladesh Geological Survey and the Department of Forestry) conducted a vibracoring study of Holocene delta evolution in the Sunderbans coastal mangrove complex, Ganges-Brahmaputra delta in Bangladesh. They were aboard the R/V Monkat, and the cruise was in March.
From March 4 to April 29, Dr. Lisa Campbell and a TAMU technician (along with chief scientists and staff from other institutions) were aboard the R/V Revelle in the South Pacific. In the seas near New Zealand, New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga, the scientists researched nitrogen and carbon cycling in the upper water column. This project focused on the smaller phytoplankton, the picoplankton, and their role in utilization of nitrogen.
Dr. Wilf Gardner, Chief Scientist, plus four TAMU technicians (and 31 participants from other institutions), spent February 13 to March 19 in the seas near New Zealand and almost to Antarctica. Their research focused on biogeochemical cycles. This JGOFS-sponsored cruise was on the R/V Revelle.
Exploring our 'back yard,' the Gulf of Mexico
Texas A&M faculty, staff and students spent so many days researching on the Gulf of Mexico during the Year of the Ocean that 1998 could have been dubbed "The Year of the Gulf."Projects during 1998 included:
The "Northeast Gulf of Mexico Chemical Oceanography and Hydrography" project
Submarine dives on oil seeps
Piston coring cruise
Study of organic carbon transport in the ocean margin benthic boundary
Class field trip
Hydrographic survey of anoxic/hypoxic conditions around the Mississippi Delta
Study of sediment dynamics in the gulf's Mississippi Canyon
Stability and change in Gulf of Mexico chemosynthetic communities
Amy Warren is managing editor and designer of Quarterdeck. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.