In late July, UTMSI researchers Dr. Ken Dunton, Susan Schonberg, and master’s students Carrie Harris, and Christina Bonsell departed for the Arctic to conduct research in the Beaufort Sea. The researchers are working from the UTMSI research vessel Proteus and the Norseman II. The scientists work is focused on several areas, including the retrieval and re-deployment of various sensors that detect long-term changes in the water like temperature, salinity, water level, and oxygen. Through sampling, they will create inventories for benthic organisms across the shelf, the Arctic Ocean food web structure, and those mechanisms responsible for the high diversity of fauna in an arctic kelp community.
As a part of the project middle school students from Kaktovik Alaska will join them on the Proteus to widen their understanding of the critical ecosystem in which they live. They are currently just finished sampling in the eastern Beaufort Sea.
You can track the progress of the Norseman II at: http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0S6yCfCa6g3i1OpN3MvFceyMp5BMmFLqb