The trip departed June 28th on the Argo, with the DeepSee Sub aboard and ready for use. In order to facilitate the trip, the Argo was outfitted with a portable weather station, lab, and additional equipment used for taking samples. Once they reached Cocos, Cruise Director Juan Manuel guided the researchers to strategic sampling locations. While a few of the dive-sites like Alcyone, Punta Maria, and Dirty Rock were visited, the researchers spent most of their time in the shallow coral gardens around Pajara, Manuelita, and Chatham Bay.
As seen in the photo slideshow below, many different sampling methods were used, including nets, bottles, and devices created especially for this trip. The DeepSee and its robotic arm played a role in the sampling as well. At a depth of 87m, the DeepSee submersible collected rocks by the sea-mount at Everest and Red Rock.
The expedition is a continuation of research that has been going on over the past several years. Researchers hope to analyze the numbers to assess climate change over time. They will also look at the physical and chemical composition of the ocean and atmosphere in order to learn how those factors impact life at Cocos. Specifically, they are trying to understand more about the physical-chemical parameters of the waters around the Islands, from the surface to 400 m / 1,312 ft.
What was measured:
To do that, they brought along different tools to measure: temperature, salinity, density, dissolved oxygen, chlorophyll and turbidity. While those levels were being testes, they also checked currents, water movements, and plankton levels. They collected extensive amounts of samples and data on this trip. To read the full report click on the Trip report PDF link below.
Expedition members also gave presentations to the Rangers, Coastguard personnel and volunteers on Cocos Island on topics including socioeconomic development, atmospheric interactions at Cocos, and the recent weather, climate, and plankton changes at the Island.