University of California Santa Barbara
Department of Ecology, Evolution, Marine Biology
Santa Barbara, California
Supporting Stations: McMurdo Station
Research Locations: Cape Evans / McMurdo Jetty
This project will examine the effects of environmental change on a key Antarctic marine invertebrate — a pelagic mollusk, the pteropod, Limacina helicina antarctica. There are two main activities in this project: (1) To deploy oceanographic equipment — in this case, autonomously recording pH sensors called SeaFETs (sea field-effect transistors) and other devices that record temperature and salinity; and (2) To use these environmental data in the laboratory at McMurdo Station to study the response of the marine invertebrates to future changes in water quality that is expected in the next few decades. The researcher's objective this season is to retrieve and re-deploy SeaFET sensors at field site locations in McMurdo Sound. These sensors continuously record seawater pH and were deployed last December by divers. The replacement sensors will record until next austral summer field season when they will again be replaced.
Field Season Overview:
Our field requirements will be minimal this season: we are only sending one person to deal with the sensors. This individual will need to work with the divers and accompany them onto the sea ice in order to facilitate the sensor swap. We will need some access to bench space so that the sensors can be assembled and tested. The preparation process also requires that we submerge them in water for a few days before deployment so access to a seawater table to a tank will be needed.