Principal investigators Shana Goffredi, Victoria Orphan (middle), and Greg Rouse (far right), along with a team of graduate students and post-doctoral researchers aboard the Wester Flyer
We completed 2 dives today to pick up seafloor experiments initiated ~48 hours prior. These samples allow us to test hypotheses about what factors control the distribution of microbes in ocean sediments and how they respond to added nutrients. It takes a large team of people to accomplish our goals each and every day – 25 to be exact, including scientists (from Oxy, Caltech, and Scripps Institute of Oceanography), ROV pilots, the captain, chief mate, steward, engineers, oilers, and deck hands. Yesterday we had a mechanical issue with the ROV and the pilots sprang into action and completed the repair in just over an hour. They are an incredibly capable and fun group to work with. As a bonus, we were joined by a pod of dolphins that stayed with us for nearly 5 hours surfing the bow waves from the ship, just at sunset. A truly magical moment at sea that will carry us through the final day of our expedition.