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You are browsing the archive for Public outreach Archives - Page 2 of 38 - The Plainspoken Scientist.

30 September 2022

#AntarcticLog: The wombat connection

I’m in Crownpoint, New Mexico this week, researching future comics at Navajo Technical University– and learned that the campus here used to have more trees. Piñon and juniper have died because of recent drought, says Abishek Roychowdhury, who teaches environmental science here. 

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23 September 2022

#AntarcticLog: Why did the ship cross the Drake Passage?

Why did the R/V Laurence M. Gould cross the fierce, fearsome Drake Passage? To get to the other side — to the Antarctic Peninsula and Palmer Station. 

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16 September 2022

#AntarcticLog: The importance of research ships

I learn so much from drawing ships.  Here is E/V Nautilus, from an artist-in-residence and science communications tour I did in 2015. Nautilus is the mother ship to Hercules, a deep-diving ROV. 

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9 September 2022

#AntarcticLog: A close look at a glacier’s edge

The Alvin Science Verification Expedition may be over (science? verified!) but the research and findings are ongoing.  What’s more, the scientists aboard bring plenty of fascinating stories to the table — not all of them related to Alvin. 

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2 September 2022

#AntarcticLog: (Climate) refugees

More than the population of Australia. That’s how many people the United Nations Refugee Agency says are refugees. These numbers are unimaginable, inconceivable, and overwhelming. 

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26 August 2022

#AntarcticLog: Finishing up with Alvin

Hello from the tail end of the Alvin Science Verification Expedition, in which we worked to verify the submersible Alvin’s ability to carry scientists, their equipment, and samples to depths of 6500 meters.  The upshot: human-operated vehicle HOV Alvin is ready, willing, and able indeed. 

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19 August 2022

#AntarcticLog: Alvin dive 5101

Greetings once again from sea, this time the Caribbean Sea, off the Cayman Islands to be precise, way down deep at the Mid-Cayman Rise.  Today is Alvin dive 5101, on the Beebe Vent Field (named for the deep-sea pioneer William Beebe who, with Otis Barton, descended 417m in the bathysphere in 1930, the year Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution was founded), the deepest known hydrothermal vents in the world. Wonder what we’ll find… 

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12 August 2022

#AntarcticLog: Diving on the Mid-Cayman Rise

Leg 2 of the Alvin Science Verification Expedition finds us once again exploring new territory. After all, that’s the point of certifying Alvin to dive 6500 meters — to give us access to much more of the sea floor.  Today we’re diving on the Mid-Cayman Rise, a spreading center in the Earth’s crust at the deepest point in the Caribbean.  

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5 August 2022

#AntarcticLog: Greetings from the Puerto Rico Trench

Greetings from the deepest place in the Atlantic Ocean!  So far I’m reporting from the surface, but every day human-operated vehicle (HOV) Alvin carries scientists deeper. I mean, if you knew you had access to 99% of the seafloor — where before you had access to 2/3 — wouldn’t you head for the deepest spots?

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29 July 2022

#AntarcticLog: Down with Alvin

Down with Alvin!  That’s where the scientists aboard R/V Atlantis are headed.  As Alvin Science Verification Expedition chief scientist Adam Soule says, “our human brain is good at seeing what’s different in an environment — anything from organic shapes to unusual colors.” 

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