September 2, 2006
After breakfast, the deployment operation begins. The releases and glass flotation spheres are readily deployed, and the wire rope segments are payed out routinely. As time goes by, the sun begins to contribute some warmth, but it seems that too often the deck is in the shadow of the ship’s superstructure. Finally, just after noon, the 64” surface flotation sphere is attached to the quick release hook and lowered to the surface of the ocean. One quick pull, and the 3800 m (2 mile) long mooring system sinks 45 m (150 ft).
Immediately after the mooring deployment, it is time for an Ice-Tethered Profiler (ITP) buoy deployment (see Dispatch 25). The weather is just too good to pass up this opportunity. First, a quick helicopter survey finds a 3.5 m (11 ft) icefloe that looks sturdy enough to support an ITP -- hopefully for several years. Shortly thereafter, the WHOI mooring team, crewmember Brian MacKenzie, Ian Green, and all of the ITP gear are transported to the floe. The instrument is deployed without the aid of any electricity using a mechanical wich through a 10” augered ice hole. In 4 hours the operation is completed and all are back onboard the Louis before 7 PM. As tired as we all are, we are pleased that we were able to complete two deployment operations in a single day.
To cap off the long day, there is a Saturday night costume party in the forward lounge. Unfortunately, the WHOI guys were too busy to dress for the occasion, but fortunately there were many other creative and amusing costumes to make up for them.