|Doug showing Alfred the method for sampling methane from the water samples collected|
in the grey Niskin bottles on the CTD profiler in the background.
|Alfred collecting water samples from a Niskin bottle on the CTD profiler|
In addition to the chemical species being investigated, the microbiologists are particularly interested in the changes in the microbial community and the effects these microbes have on communities living in the plume environment.
On Saturday night, a CTD was used to pinpoint the major black smoker on E2. We sampled at various depths where the hot buoyant chemically-rich plume rose through the water column. We collected water samples to analyse for gases, metals and nutrients. Some of these will be analysed on board and others will be taken back to respective labs in the UK. Last night a series of CTD dips were conducted over the northern end of the E2 site to prospect for a new site for which evidence was found in 2009/2010.
This type of work normally leads to very excited geochemists and biologists catching up on their sleep!