Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Cruise Planning Synopsis

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AT38 Behrenfeld "NAAMES"


R/V Atlantis

Cruise Party

Michael Behrenfeld: Chief Scientist, Principal Investigator
Oregon State university Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Cordley Hall 2082 Corvallis, Oregon USA 97331-2902
+1 541 737 5289

Departure: Aug 30, 2017

Woods Hole

Arrival: Sep 24, 2017

Woods Hole

Operations Area

North Atlantic
Lat/Lon: 50° 0.0′ N / 40° 0.0′ W
Depth Range: 0 / 2000
Will the vessel be operating within 200 NM of a foreign country? Canada, Greenland
Are visas or special travel documents required? no

Science Objectives

The North Atlantic Aerosols and Marine Ecosystems Study (NAAMES) is an interdisciplinary investigation addressing two primary science goals: (1) Define environmental and ecological controls on plankton communities and (2) Define linkages between ocean ecosystem properties and biogenic aerosols. Within these two broad goals, the NAAMES investigation focuses on identifying environment-ecosystem-aerosol interdependencies in the climate-sensitive North Atlantic. This ocean region hosts the largest annual plankton bloom in the global ocean and its impact on Earth’s radiative balance is particularly sensitive to biogenic aerosol emissions. Specific baseline science objectives of NAAMES are to (1) Characterize plankton ecosystem properties during primary phases of the annual cycle in the North Atlantic and their dependence on environmental forcings, (2) Determine how primary phases of the North Atlantic annual plankton cycle interact to recreate each year the conditions for an annual bloom, and (3) Resolve how remote marine aerosols and boundary layer clouds are influenced by plankton ecosystems in the North Atlantic. These objectives are accomplished by coupling autonomous in situ and satellite measurements sustained throughout the NAAMES investigation with short-term, coordinated ship and airborne campaigns that target critical events in the annual plankton cycle and focus on detailed system characterization. These direct observations are integrated with climate-ecosystem modeling to create a process-based understanding that allows improved interpretation of historical data records and improved predictions of future change.

Science Activities

The NAAMES investigation has a duration of 5 years and involves 4 field campaigns.  Each field campaign will share a common observation profile.  The first and second campaigns were conducted in November 2015 and May 2016, respectively, on the UNOLS R/V Atlantis.  For each campaign, ship-based measurements are accompanied by aircraft measurements.  The aircraft is a NASA C-130 stationed in Saint John’s Bay, Canada. The Atlantis is required for each field campaign due to requirements for foreward deck space for a full-sized aerosols van, deck space for a radioisotope van, and the large scientific complement (34 berths).  This global class vessel is also advantageous for the NAAMES project on account of sea-worthiness during field studies that span the annual cycle and familiarity of the science team gained during the first two campaigns.

Each field campaign involves a 26-day, roughly triangular-shaped ship transect. The ship’s direction around the transect triangle is scientifically irrelevant, allowing real-time adjustments based on prevailing and forecasted weather conditions and sea-states. Assuming a counterclockwise direction, the ship proceeds from Woods Hole to the turning point at 40° N. During this outbound leg, underway sampling is conducted, but not regular overboard deployments.  It is beneficial to make at least one stop during the outbound transect to conduct a ‘shake-down’ station of overboard operations.  Following the turn northward, the full complement of ship-based measurements begins and continues until the northern-most turning point (~55° to 60°N). During this primary latitudinal science leg, daily operations involve a sampling station that begins near dawn and continues through the day.  Station operations  include multiple CTD/Rosette casts.  Optical and other instruments mounted on the rosette for shallow casts but have depth limits <2000 m and will need to be removed before a deep cast.  Following a deep cast, additional shallow casts are conducted for water sampling and underwater light measurements.  Also during station, measurements will be made of downwelling light properties and water leaving radiances.  Once the primary science transect is complete and the northern-most turning point is reached, the return transect begins, with continuous in-line measurements conducted until the day before port arrival, but no additional station occupations anticipated.

In addition to water sampling and flow through seawater measurements, another key component of the NAAMES investigation is the measurement of aerosols.  For this aspect, key measurements are conducted from the Aersosols Van, located on the forward deck of the ship.  Aerosol measurements are conducted continuously while the wind is from the forward direction. These measurement have to be terminated when the wind is from the backward direction, due to contamination from the ship.  Thus, it is desired to keep the ship orientation favorable for aerosol samples for the greatest fraction of the time feasible (understanding that ship orientation during overboard castings is dictated by sea state and wire angle). 

Also during the field campaigns, deployments are made of autonomous profiling floats and surface drifters.  Deployments will occur along the N-S primary latitudinal science transect, with exact location dependent on station location and real-time information on regional mesoscale eddies.  Surface drifter deployments will target mesoscale eddy centers and will provide water parcel tracking capabilities that inform flight patterns for the C-130.   

Airborne deployments accompanying the ship measurements focus on the primary N-S latitudinal transect.  The airborne measurements include in situ aerosol sampling and remote sensing measurements with a hyperspectral ocean color sensor, a high resolution lidar, a polarimeter, and a downwelling irradiance sensor.  Aircraft measurements need to be highly coordinated with the ship, so regular communications between the two platforms is essential. Aircraft measurements begin shortly after takeoff, and continue during the transect to the ship.  Once arriving at the ship, a diversity of flight patterns are followed to characterize horizontal and vertical variability in ocean ecosystem and aerosol properties.  The aircraft transect also includes fly-overs of regions previously sampled by the ship, as tracked by the surface drifters.  These drifters essentially provide a ‘bread crumb trail’ that allows the aircraft to follow changes in system properties well after the ship has departed a given sampling station.  Once the primary science measurements are complete along the ship transect, the aircraft returns to base.

Additional Info

Pre-cruise Planning Meeting: Teleconference/Visit WHOI
Meeting Notes: Michael Behrenfeld traveled to WHOI for the pre-cruise planning meeting on March 17, 2015 for first NAAMES cruise. For second NAAMES cruise, the pre-cruise planning meeting was conducted by teleconference.


  Station 7
  Distance: 2200
  Days: null
  Latitude: 40° 0.0’ N
  Longitude: 40° 0.0’ W

  Station 1
  Distance: 1100
  Days: 2
  Latitude: 60° 0.0’ N
  Longitude: 40° 0.0’ W

Supporting documentation:

Notes: Pre-Cruise meeting May 30, 2017


Funding Agency: nasa
Grant or contract number: NNX15AF30G

Scientific Instrumentation for R/V Atlantis

Other Science Vans:

Shipboard Equipment

Sippican XBT System (Mark 21)
ADCP 75 kHz
Deionized Water System
Science Underway Seawater System
Navigation - Heading
Fume Hood
Navigation - Position

Shipboard Communication

Basic Internet access via HiSeasNet
Is there a need to receive data from shore on a regular basis?
Is there a need to transfer data to shore on a regular basis?
Is there an expectation to use Skype or any other real-time video conference program?

CTD/Water Sampling

911+ Rosette 24-position, 10-liter bottle Rosette with dual T/C sensors
Biospherical underwater PAR (1000m depth limit) with reference Surface PAR
SBE43 oxygen sensor
Seapoint STM turbidity sensor
Wet Labs C*Star transmissometer (660nm wavelength)
Wet Labs ECO-AFL fluorometer
Wet Labs FLNTURTD Combination Flourometer and Turbidity Sensor

Critical CTD Sensors

Hydrographic Analysis Equipment

Dissolved Oxygen Titration System (Brinkmann Titrator)
Oxygen Sample Bottles (available in 150 ml sizes)

MET Sensors

Barometric Pressure
Air temperature
Relative Humidity
Wind speed and direction
Short Wave Solar Radiation

Sample Storage

Freezer -70°C 25 cu. ft.
Freezer -70°C 3.2 cu. ft. ea.
Refrigerator 8.6 cu. ft.
Scientific Walk-in Freezer
Storage Notes: is the -70oC 25 cu. ft. freezer a walk-in
-70 is not a walk in, it is a stand up.


Will you be using Long Base Line (LBL) navigation? no
How many nets? null
How many tansponders? null
Will you be using Ultra-short baseline (USBL) navigation?no


Navigation Notes: During long-term stations (36 - 48 h), it is desired to take samples following a surface drifter and, when not taking samples to maintain wind direction from the bow for aerosol sampling for as much time as sea state and other factors permit


CTD Winch with .322" Electro-mechanical wire
Winch Notes:
Winch Notes:

Standard Oceanographic Cables

Slip ring required? no
Non-standard wire required? no
Traction winch required? no

Portable Vans

Isotope Van
Science Van 1
Type/size: 20' x 8' x 8' shiping container Location: 02 deck aft
Water: no Power:no
Science Van 2
Type/size: 20' x 8' x 8' shiping container Location: 02 deck forward
Water: no Power:120 amps 'clean' power
Science Van 3
Type/size: 20' x 8' x 8' shiping container Location: 02 deck
Water: no Power:120 amps 'clean' power
Science Van 4
Type/size: 20' x 8' x 8' shipping container - see additional notes Location: 02 deck
Water: no Power:see additional notes
Science Van 5
Type/size: 20' x 8' x 8' shipping container - see additional notes Location: 02 deck
Water: no Power:120 amps 'clean' continuous power at 110 VAC

Specialized Deck Equipment

Mooring Deployment/Recovery Equipment Required: no Type: 
Cruise Specific Science Winch Required: no Type: 
Nets Required: no Type: 

Over the Side Equipment

Will you be bringing any equipment (winches, blocks, etc.) that lowers instruments over the side? yes Details:
  1. NOAA SeaSweep
  2. Peter Guabe transducer pole
  3. Peter Gaube mini-CTD underway deployment

6/3/17 update: Peter Gaube overview of the underway CTD ops that my group plans to conduct during the upcoming NAAMES expedition (AT38).  
Our system is based on of a high-power electric fishing reel that is coupled to an internally-logging CTD with a backscattering sensors.  The package is deployed from the fan tail.  During our 2016 expedition we learned that we are able to make profiles at speeds up to ~12 knots, but find that the system works best at speeds <=6 knots.  We are also able to conduct deep profiles on station as long as we communicate with the bridge and keep the ship moving forward very slowly.
The underway CTD, named the ChUMP, can be deployed and operated by a single person.  We have established a basic safety system to ensure that we can conduct underway ChUMP profiles in low to moderate seas without any danger to the operator.  
The operator MUST:
1) Wear a floatation device, preferably a float coat
2) Wear a personal locator beacon.  We are using a system that sends an AIS and VHF signal.  We chose this over a standard satellite-based system as the lag time from activation to notification on the bridge of all vessels within a few miles of the beacon is ~ 15 seconds.  This was tested on our last Atlantis cruise.
3) Wear steel-toed boots
4) Notify the bridge and SSSG on duty of planned operation prior to stepping on deck
5) Check in with bridge prior to deployment of the ChUMP
6) Maintain communication with bridge regarding line angle and any danger to entanglement with the running gear
7) Inform bridge and SSSG when deployment is halted to download data.
picture of the ChUMP on the last NAAMES cruise attched to synopsis.

Special Requirements

Elecrical Power: yes Identify Most of power must be clean and able to run with UPS
Equipment Handling: yes Identify: hand held deployment of optical sensor / bucket samples of surface seawater on station
Inter/intraship Communications: yes Identify: communications with C130 aircraft
Science Stowage: yes Identify: regular access to science sample containers and lab supplies
Water: yes Identify: plumbing for clean flow through seawater system needs to be cleaned prior to cruise

Additional Cruise Items/Activities

Explosive Devices:no Portable Air Compressors:yes Flammable Gases:yes Small Boat Operations:no SCUBA Diving Operations:no

Hazardous Material

Will hazardous material be utilized?yesDescribe deployment method and quantity:

Radioactive Material


Additional Information

Is night time work anticipated on this cruise?yesSpecialized tech support (Seabeam, coring, other):
night time operations are common during NAAMES campaigns, including Seasweep deployment, CTD casts, drifter deployments, and float deployments

Other required equipment and special needs:
With respect to the CTD/rosette - it would be helpful to have a 36 place rosette if available to facilitate water sampling requirements.  If a 24 place rosette is the largest available, it would helpful if this was equipped with 12 L Niskins.  Also, it is critical that any black o-rings on the Niskin bottles are replaced with the orange silicone o-rings, as the black versions are toxic and will have serious impacts on many of the sensitive biological measurements made during the cruise.
NOTES from Pre-Cruise meeting 5/30: WHOI Does not have or access to a 36 place rosette or 12LNiskins. We do have orange non toxic o-rings on 24 place 10L rosette.
Science party will mount UVP to CTD frame.

With respect to the C-star transmissometer and FLNTURTD requested above, it is desired that these are mounted on the CTD/rosette system for water column profiling.

With respect to science portable vans:  We are currently anticipating 3 portable science vans for the cruise.  The first is a RAD van provided by UNOLS.  The other 2 vans are aerosol vans on the forward 02 deck.  The following text provides some additional information regarding these two aerosol vans.

Both aerosol vans are 20’x8’x8’ shipping containers.  The 1st is owned by Scripps and will contain atmospheric particle measurements (possibly including Meskidhze's instruments and sampling).  The 2ndaerosol van is to be requested from UNOLS for atmospheric gas measurements.  Preferred mounting is on feet or rails 2’ above deck.  We'll need 2 stair steps for each if available.  It is prefer if both aersol vans are both mounted as far forward as possible and as close to each other as possible. 

For the Scripps van, power requirements are 120 amps “clean” continuous power at 110 VAC.  Lynn Russel will provide a 408 transformer. For the UNOLS supplied van, power requirements are  25 amps "clean" power and 14.1 amps dirty power at 110 VAC.  The UCSC team has an additional 11 amp clean + 11 amp dirty power requirement for their mass spectrometer, but where this souce is depends on where the instrument is located (i.e., either in the van or wet lab).  A crane is required to load van (15000 lb) onto “feet” bolted to 02 deck.  A crane is again required to load inlet (300 lb) on top of van while it is secured.  Two gas cylinders (dry air, standard size) need to be secured external to van (request a 2x2 rack be mounted on deck adjacent to back of van).

We would also like to request, if possible, phone installation in the Scripps van (the use of walkie talkies is not advised as they interfere with the mass spectrometers in the van)

Other miscellaneous items

(1) It was not clear in this form if the R/V Atlantis has as part of its normal operating measurement instruments a Turner fluorometer for descrete sample chlorophyll measurements (??)
NOTES from Pre-Cruise meeting 5/30: WHOI does not have a Turner florometer for running individual samples.

(2) It would be helpful to know the volume of distillied/milli-Q water the ship can generate (?)NOTES from Pre-Cruise meeting 5/30: same volume as past cruise.

NOTES from Pre-Cruise meeting 5/30:

(1) the LaRC team is again planning on mounting the upward looking lidar on the 03 deck (as before) but will not have the other 2 NOAA instruments

(2) the LaRC team will also be bringing the additional radio for the bridge to communicating with the aircraft

(3) we may be launching 10 more radiosondes than we did on the last cruise

Checklist & Notes


U.S. Customs Form: no
Diplomatic Clearance: yes
Date Submitted:
Date Approved:
Agent Information:
Approved Greenland 8/15/17
Isotope Use Approval: no
Isotope Notes:
SCUBA Diving: no


SSSG Tech:
Science team will need assistance to loft cytometer into hydro lab.
From 5/30 Meeting:
Heat lamp for forward pump (science party?)
Request temp control for main lab.
Wind from bow during ops
Lights off on hangar back deck due to incubations