Welcome to the web site for Sediment and Solute Transport on Rivers and Margins (SSTORM) Research Group! Reide Corbett and J.P. Walsh from East Carolina University and the UNC Coastal Studies Institute lead the team.
Check out our research in/on wetlands, estuaries, barrier islands, shelves and groundwater.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Let the Coring Begin and The Vampires Come Out

The first core heads over the side.

Scientists wait with baited breath.

Muddy and sleep-deprived, a couple of Vampires (Sid and Ray) use their remaining energy to focus on cutting a core.

4 August

At about 2100 (9 PM), we arrived on our first site.  The "Sunshine Shift" started the sampling, but it was just a few hours until the "Vampires" had to report for watch.  Our first hiccup in operations arrived quickly when the Marine Tech, Tina, discovered that the CTD water-column profiling system decided to stop working.  These kind of challenges are the norm in oceanographic research and can be frustrating for all.  But, I've learned t is always better to have a an positive attitude when things don't work as you hope, and it's wise to have a backup plan.  Fortunately, our work is focused on collecting seabed samples, so this isn't a major issue.  Of course, Tina would work hard in the coming day to see if she could ressurrect the sytem.

The first two cores went relatively smoothly.  The Vampires trickled onto the deck at 2345, prepared to do some work...and ready to lose some sleep.  The first night of a night shift is always tough because there is no easy way to make the transition.  Most people tried to take a nap that afternoon, but that hour or two sleep is of little help the next morning when you still haven't really slept for 30 hours.  It was a busy night, and people kept awake by learning their watch responsibilities and getting stuff done.  By the morning, our faces and clothes were muddy, and our minds were numb. Everyone needed rest.  But, it was a successful, productive night.  As you can see from the lack of many pictures, our focus was on survival.

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