2015-2016 Science Planning Summaries
United States Antarctic Program United States Antarctic Program Logo National Science Foundation Logo
2015-2016 USAP Field Season
Project Detail

Project Title

Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) Southern Hemisphere cruises

The NSF-funded Ocean Observatories Initiative Southern Ocean Surface Buoy awaits deployment in Punta Arenas, Chile. Photo by Bob Weller


Event Number:

Program Manager:
Mr. Bauke Houtman

ASC POC/Implementer:
Matthew Erickson / Adam Jenkins

Principal Investigator

Mr. Michael Kelly

Arlington, Virginia

Project Web Site:
http://oceanobservatories.org/ External Web Site


Supporting Stations: RV/IB Nathaniel B. Palmer
Research Locations: Argentine Basin / Southern Ocean


The Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) has constructed a networked infrastructure of sensor systems to measure physical, chemical, geological, and biological variables in the ocean and on the seafloor. This season, the OOI team will only service the Coastal & Global Scale Node (CGSN) at global site 55° S, 90° W (Southern Ocean) from the RVIB Nathaniel B. Palmer (NBP). On this cruise, the team will recover and redeploy the array, which consists of several moorings. The platforms carry multidisciplinary instrumentation and provide the capability for real-time communication of data and control of sampling. The surface mooring captures the surface forcing and upper-ocean variability. The profiling mooring measures the entire water column. Additionally, three sub-surface moorings will obtain vertical profiles and sample the mesoscale variability at the site.

Field Season Overview

Researchers will make two cruises on the NBP, both departing from and returning to Punta Arenas, Chile. On the first cruise, NBP15-10, the team will sail to locations in the Argentine Basin where they will deploy one Global Surface Mooring, one Global Hybrid Profiler mooring, two subsurface Mesoscale Flanking Moorings, and five gliders. The moorings will support sensors for measurement of air-sea fluxes of heat, moisture and momentum, and physical, biological and chemical properties throughout the water column. Gliders will be equipped with acoustic modems to relay data from the mesoscale flanking moorings to shore via satellite telemetry and will sample within and around the triangular array. These gliders will carry sensor suites with the capability to alter sampling rates during a mission. On the second cruise, NBP15-11, the team will sail to locations in the Southern Ocean where they will deploy a similar suite of moorings and gliders.

Deploying Team Members

  • Sebastien Bigorre