Saturday, March 30, 2019

Antarctic toothfish

57kg, 170cm, delicious

Friday, March 22, 2019

Wednesday, March 20, 2019



ROV operations

ROV went down to 1800m, through the moonpool, and took samples from the sea floor: animals, plants and stones.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019


Sea glider

Diving through a plankton bloom

Satellite image: Sentinel 3, Tilman Dinter, AWI
Today, during the #DronningMaudLandCruise2019, we deployed one of our two Seagliders; an underwater drone that will make dives between the surface and 1000 m depth to measure ocean temperature, salinity, oxygen, and chlorophyll-a. Satellite images showed that a big plankton bloom is happening right now in this area, perfect timing! The glider will make transects across this bloom for the coming three weeks, remotely piloted by our colleagues in Bergen through Iridium satellite connection. At the end of the cruise we will pick up the glider and obtain a lot of new information on the biology and physics. First water samples confirm that we are looking at a very strong bloom, dominated by various large diatoms.

Photos: Sebastien Moreau, NP


Catering on board is excellent. Our cook Arild deserves a medal.
Breakfast from 7:30 til 8, hot lunch at 11:30 and diner at 17:30. Buffet style, always 2 dishes to choose from. Plus salad bar and dessert. Big fridge for those who are hungry in the evening or at night.

Thursday, March 07, 2019


After taking several pictures of icebergs, I suddenly discovered that they all have a halo: a white, foggy arc on top. Scientists onboard say it is because of the microclimate around the iceberg, forming arcs of ice crystals. Kind of.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Feersum Endjinn

Title courtesy Iain M Banks

Tuesday, March 05, 2019


Antarctic ocean.Today we encountered B15AA, a slab of tabular ice that broke off of the Antarctic shore in 2000. Still floating, after all these years. When we arrived, the whole beast was covered in fog. But I managed to get a glimpse of this mysterious iceberg. With an icy halo! Strange how the weather changes around a large iceberg: windy and cold with rough seas. We do not want to get too close, it's dangerous.

The sun behind the fog casts a silvery light over the ocean. The silver sea.

Monday, March 04, 2019


On Wednesday, we will probably arrive at our goal at the northern shores of Antarctica. We got a satellite image in today. The weather is excellent and we are making good speed. Godspeed.
There is a lot of ice waiting for us, and today we got a taste of what is to come: Majesty !

Sunday, March 03, 2019




We have crossed Drake Passage and entered the Antarctic Ocean.
After breakfast, the first iceberg appeared: a tabular one: huge vertical walls of sea ice: 40 m. The weather is nice and sunny, sea is calm. Beautiful day.

Saturday, March 02, 2019


This huge mf is going down through the moon pool. It is a ROV or remotely operated vehicle. Ægir will go down approximately 2000m and explore the sea floor, take pictures and samples. We have a specialist crew with us to operate the beast.

Note: a moon pool is a hole in the ship to let divers and robots directly into the water. This way we do not have to cut through the ice first

"In Norse mythology, Ægir is a sea jötunn associated with the ocean. He is also known for being a friend of the gods and hosting elaborate parties for them." - Source: Wikipedia

About Ægir - Source Wiki

Drake Passage

Drake Passage, the roughest sea on the planet. We will sail for 8 more days before we meet the first icebergs. Some people on board have gotten seasick, one has been in bed for 2 days. Otherwise, all is well, good crew and group. The food onboard is excellent.
56º 43.050 S - 59º 43.343 W