29 July 2014 Spontaneous Knotting of an Agitated String

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10PM to Midnight?! All that

10PM to Midnight?! All that food looks good...yumm

10 PM?

Bobby- Happy to report I slept until 6:30 this morning! The trick was to open the window. It's been too hot in here!

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I cant believe you are staying up until midnight.....never thought I would see the day!
Can u get blackout curtains? I am impressed you sewed the drogue!


Ya, my night time escapades are pretty impressive. Sewing comes in handy, for sure. Never thought I'd be sewing an ocean measurement device!

Jonathan McNeal
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eating snow buntings

do you ever eat the snow buntings

Snow Buntings

The arctic fox preys on snow bunting eggs and chicks. The eggs and young are also eaten by gulls and skuas. That surprised me; I didn't know that seagulls would eat other birds. A skua is another seabird. The Gyr Falcon preys on snow buntings as they migrate. All told, it is a pretty risky and harsh life to be a snow bunting. Survival of the fittest.


Hi Peggy! I love your journals and the photo of you all riding polar bears is pretty fantastic! Do the drogues slow down the water velocity? We learn in Earth Science that larger rocks require a stronger velocity to move them, so would that affect your data? If so, how do you account for it? I hope you are having a great time out there!


Hi Michelle!
I've been thinking about your question and talking with others about it. The question really is "how closely does the velocity of an object in the water match the velocity of the water molecules? Really the object (in this case the drogue) is a proxy for the velocity of the water. How accurate is it?
A drogue is a pretty low tech way to measure water velocity and has been used for hundreds of years. In 2011, another student calculated water velocity in front of the glacier using a drogue so we have baseline measurements. Three years later we have the drogues again but also a current meter. The current meter measures the Doppler shift of sonar pings against tiny sediment particles in the water. So a current meter uses the same principal of measuring something moving through the water to calculating velocity (although the object is much smaller). We will be able to compare the current meter readings to the calculations from the drogue and determine the accuracy of our baseline measurements and account for any descrepencies.
I think the most accurate measurements comes from an instrument that stays in the same location while the water flows past it, turning a fan mechanism. The rotation rate of the fan is converted to water velocity. It is like an anemometer for water.
Incidentally, I discovered the origin of the unit "knots". It dates back to the 17th century when sailors used a devise called "a common log". It was a coil of rope with uniformly spaced knots tied in it, attached to a piece of wood shaped like a slice of pie. The piece of wood was lowered from the back of the ship and allowed to float behind it. The line was allowed to pay out freely from the coil as the piece of wood fell behind the ship for a specific amount of time. When the specified time had passed, the line was pulled in and the number of knots on the rope between the ship and the wood were counted. The speed of the ship was said to be the number of knots counted (Bowditch, 1984).
That was probably a longer answer than you expected, but I had fun thinking about it and learning about knots!

Lucy Ivey
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I'm so glad to read that you

I'm so glad to read that you're sleeping better. I can't help it--all day I've been designing in my mind sleeping masks for you. They are roughly black, leather, batman-like designs that cover your pineal gland and eyes, leaving only your nose and mouth open. Why didn't I think of this before you all left?

Sleeping Masks

Lucy- I think you just came up with a great product and business plan! You can sell them in the store here!

Ryan S.
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The Internal Clock

Wow! It is pretty awesome that the animals' internal clock works not only with 12 hours of sunlight and 12 hours of darkness, but with 24 whole hours of daylight! Thanks for visiting Brooklyn Prospect and answering my question, Ms. McNeal. Please visit again someday!


Ryan Shepherd

The internal clock

You are very welcome, Ryan and I would love to return to Brooklyn Prospect. My daughter lives in NYC, so maybe I will! Thanks for following along.

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