you nervous when you were transfered from one ship to the JOIDES
School: San Isidro Jr.
High, San Isidro TX
we flew into Townsville and actually boarded the ship from the
dock. It was just a little difficult to get our luggage up the
gangplank stairs, over the bulkhead doors, and into the cabin.
Fortunately, I had a nice gentlemen from ODP at Texas A&M
who assisted me. I have transferred numerous times at sea from
one vessel to another and I have been a little apprehensive about
it. Actually, I usually become scared afterwards when I think
about what I did. However, it was easy to get on the JOIDES Resolution
from the dock.
Question: When will you start
when was the first core sample taken aboard the Joides Resolution?
Name: 2nd period 8th
Jr. High, Rocksprings TX
actually started drilling last week and the first core was up
at about 2:15 A. M. on January 11. I am going to be talking about
that in the broadcast; it was quite exciting!
Question: How long do you
plan to stay out there on Leg 194?
Name: 5th period science
Jr. High, Rocksprings TX
shall be staying on the ship until we arrive in Guam around March
5. Each leg is approximately two months so the scientists have
a lot of work to do in that short period of time.
Question: How many scientists
are aboard the ship? Has there been any new scientific evidence
of earth's past history from the study of the core samples?
Middle School, Charlotte TX
There now are twenty-four scientists on board; we had twenty-five,
but one of our young female scientists cracked her femur and had
to be evacuated by helicopter to MacKay to the hospital. It really
is too bad because this is important to her and her learning as
well as being in a hospital in a strange place where you have
no family with you. She would like to return to the ship, if possible,
but it is very difficult to get around on a ship like this with
lots of steep stairs and constant movement. In addition to the
scientists, we have twenty-four technicians many of whom have
Ph.D's or other advanced degrees and just enjoy the work. They
are out here for two months and then they are on land for two
months. Some are permanent employees of ODP (Ocean Drilling Program)
and some just come for the two months. As far as results, those
will not be know until everyone gets through with all the tests,
but it looks promising!
Question: Can you explain
how they are able to drill off of a boat?
School: Bellaire High
School, Houston TX
a deep hole from a ship in the ocean requires a drilling platform
which is capable of maintaining it's position over a specific
location on the seafloor. Without this capability, the platform
would be moved by the currents off location resulting in either
pulling the drill pipe out of the hole or breaking of the drill
pipe. The Ocean Drilling Program uses the JOIDES Resolution as
its coring platform. This ship has a computer-controlled system
which regulates 12 powerful thrusters in addition to the main
propulsion system. These thrusters are located around the vessel
to allow moving in all compass directions. Using an acoustic beacon
set near the drill site on the seafloor, this system keeps the
ship positioned over the drill hole despite wind and waves, permitting
drilling in water as deep as 8,235 meters. Pieces of drill pipe
are threaded together and lowered from the steel derrick through
the "moon pool," a seven-meter-wide hole in the bottom
of the ship. A heave compensator in the derrick acts as a giant
shock absorber, so that the up and down movements of the ship
are not transferred to the drill pipe. Thus cores can be cut and
lifted smoothly. To drill through soft sediment or mud, a hydraulic
piston corer is used. This device uses seawater to drive a steel
barrel through the sediment. To penetrate into harder sediment
and rock, drill bits with cutting heads are used. As the hydraulic
piston corer or drill bit cuts through layers of sediment and
rock, cores of subseafloor material in segments as long as 9.5
meters are collected in tubes. The tubes are attached to a wire
cable allowing the crew to pull the core up through the drill
Question: Mrs. Guerra's 8th
grade science class would like to know what some of your biggest
fears were when you were selected to go on this assignment.
Name: Mrs. Guerra's 8th
grade science class
School: San Isidro ISD,
San Isidro, TX
biggest fear in being selected for this adventure was related
to how much I really needed to know about geology. My background
is geography; although I have taught the physical geography component
of world geography, it is not as in depth as geology in recognizing
various types of sediments and other more detailed aspects of
the research here. However, as I have mentioned before, everyone
is wonderful in helping me and explaining their research. I
thoroughly enjoy traveling, being on the ship, learning all about
the research here, and sharing it with you.
I think it is very interesting to see all the young scientists
here, some of them not much older than you are, but they have
worked hard and were able to be selected to participate on this
project. Most of them seemed to decide at the middle school or
high school level that they really wanted to know about the earth
and this was one way to do it. JVL
Question: Will this be an
adventure that you will not forget? What are the pros and cons
on this voyage that you are making??
School: San Isidro ISD,
San Isidro TX
far, this adventure has been an exciting, learning experience
that one could never forget! There is something new constantly.
To me, learning about anything is exciting and here I have all
sorts of teachers. If I have a question, there is someone who
can answer it from one of the drillers to one of the ship's crew
to one of the scientists. I was a little apprehensive about getting
in the way of someone in the middle of special research, but,
so far, no one seems to mind stopping what he/she is doing and
explaining the research or answering a question as to what this
rock has on it. They also help me with answers to questions coming
from the students. As far as I am concerned, there are no "cons"
other than feeling sometimes I am in a time warp; the other day
I had to consult with several to make sure what day it was. Most
of them were not sure either. My working shift is 6:00 P.M. to
6:00 A. M.; yesterday at 1:00 P. M. we had an abandon ship drill
in the middle of my breakfast. Some might consider that a "con",
but I just consider it a new and different experience. My suggestion
to you is to consider seriously going into science so that one
day you can have this experience as a scientist. JVL