August 3, 2008
Rick and Will have found a suitable floe and we are going out to deploy an ITP. I am going out on the ice! We helicopter out to the site and work begins right away. First Will and Jim drill the hole using a 10' auger bit. They drill 3.2 meters down, into the water below.
First to go in is the anchor, weighing 250 pounds. Note that it is designed to fit into the 10" hole. The anchor is lowered into the hole with a most interesting device. The Arctic Winch was designed by Don Peters at WHOI specifically for ITP deployment. It is lightweight, made of aluminum, so it can be carried onto the ice. It comes apart for easy shipping and moving. Its design exploits the weight of the anchor so that the weight of the anchor pulls the line down into the water beneath the ice. Next the profiler goes in, another innovative WHOI design.
The profiler functions much like the MMP on moorings-- it travels up and down the wire measuring the temperature and salinity of the ocean water it travels through. (Remember, the ITP is on ice -- which moves around the Arctic.) After the profiler goes in, we have time to appreciate our surroundings while the weight of the anchor pulls the line down 760 meters. Our ice camp is named Ice Camp Louis.
In the top of the buoy sits the GPS and the Iridium phone that calls Rick's lab at WHOI with its data, allowing him to go home and not have to stay in the Arctic 24/7/365 to gather the data.
One in, 4 to go.