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CANON Spring 2017 Expedition

A fleet of six long-range autonomous vehicles and a Wave Glider sit by the R/V Western Flyer prior to deployment.

CANON Spring 2017 Expedition

Chief Scientist Francisco Chavez
R/V Western Flyer
March 2-8, 2017

Chief Scientist Francisco Chavez is leading a group of researchers during a six-day expedition in Monterey Bay aboard the R/V Western Flyer. The overarching goal of the expedition is to use a fleet of smart, autonomous instruments and shipboard sampling in parallel with two other methods of sampling: net tows and an instrument called an Environmental Sample Processor (ESP) that has been installed inside of a long-range autonomous underwater vehicle (LRAUV).

Aboard the R/V Western Flyer, MBARI researchers will conduct shipboard sampling using a tool called a CTD (an acronym for conductivity, temperature, and depth) that can determine physical properties of seawater. Attached to the CTD are bottles that collect water samples at varying depths. A fleet of smart, autonomous instruments (such as LRAUVs and autonomous surface vehicles) will help researchers identify where to conduct the CTD sampling.

Net tows will be conducted by researchers aboard another ship, the Reuben Lasker, which is operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The Reuben Lasker and the Western Flyer will meet at an offshore upwelling front identified by the autonomous vehicles and conduct their respective methods of sampling in the same location. A long-range AUV, named Aku, will carry an ESP that will also conduct autonomous sampling. All these methods of sampling will be compared to determine if they detect the same organisms.

A fleet of six long-range autonomous vehicles and a Wave Glider sit by the R/V Western Flyer prior to deployment.

About CANON Spring 2017 Expedition

Chief Scientist Francisco Chavez is leading a group of researchers during a six-day expedition in Monterey Bay aboard the R/V Western Flyer