A CTD determines the essential physical properties of ocean water. It gives scientists a precise and comprehensive charting of the distribution and variation of water temperature, salinity, and density that helps to understand how the oceans affect life. (Media Relations, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)
Not all CTDs look the same, and they often are equipped with different components, depending on the needs of the scientists. The long gray tubes are Niskin bottles used to collect water samples at various depths and at specific times designated by researchers on the ship. (Media Relations, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)
Using a CTD often requires the help of a variety of crew members, especially when deploying and recovering the instrument in heavy seas. (Media Relations, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)
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