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Images: The Hunt for 18° Water

Researchers and crew members struggle to deploy a spar buoy in rough seas during a January 2006 cruise of R/V Atlantis in the North Atlantic. The buoy measured the exchange of heat and moisture between the atmosphere and the ocean. (Photo by Terry Joyce, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

Atmospheric scientist Jim Edson launches a radiosonde—an instrumented weather balloon—from R/V Atlantis. (Photo by Dave Stuebe, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

(Illustration by Jayne Doucette, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)