Coastal Ocean Research and Monitoring Program
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Data Inventory

Cape Fear River Plume Sampling Cruise


On our Cape Fear River Plume sampling cruises we start the day inside the mouth of the Cape Fear River and end our sampling in the ocean, outside of the river plume. There seven sampling stations that we visit monthly. Basic information including time (GMT), latitude, longitude, water depth, sea surface temperature, weather conditions, and sea state are noted upon arrival at every station.

We deploy the YSI-6820 Water Quality Sonde at each station from the stern of the research vessel. This instrument measures water temperature, pH, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, and turbidity. Additionally we collect Nitrate, total Nitrate, Phosphate, total Phosphate, ammonium and Chlorophyll a measurements at each station. Zooplankton samples are also collected at four of the plume stations.

Along with the YSI, technicians also deploy the following equipment at each station:
  1. Li-cor 1000 measures the light attenuation from 0.5m down to 4.0m below the water surface.
  2. Secchi disk is used to document water clarity.
  3. Satlantic Micro-SAS measures the amount of sunlight reflecting off of the water. This data is then used to calibrate ocean color and sea surface temperature images.
  4. Satlantic Micro-Pro measures light penetration from the bottom to the surface of the water column.

Technicians pulling water samples from the SBE 25 Rosette Water Carousel after it returns to the boat deck.
The Plume is sampled monthly; however every other month, we deploy the SBE25 Rosette Water Carousel. The SBE25 collects water samples and takes physical measurements of the water (e.g. conductivity, temperature, pH, oxygen saturation) from the bottom of the water column, mid-water, and at surface. The water collected is used to process Chlorophyll a, Total Nitrogen, Total Phosphate, Nitrate, Ortho-phosphate, and Ammonium. The surface water that is collected at each station is also analyzed for pigment detection back in the lab on an Ocean Optics Spectrophotometer.

The LISST (Laser In-Situ Scattering and Transmissometry) is attached to the SBE25 and transmits suspended particle size and quantity data.

Onslow Bay Sampling Cruise


Our Onslow Bay sampling cruises are conducted bi-monthly. We sample six stations, each approximately five nautical miles apart, beginning at the Masonboro Inlet sea buoy and extending 27 miles offshore. Our most offshore sampling station (OB27) also serves as the location for a fixed underwater instrument mooring.

Basic data including time (GMT), latitude, longitude, water depth, sea surface temperature, weather conditions, and sea state are noted upon arrival at every
station. When on station, scientists take measurements of physical parameters (temperature, currents, salinity, etc.) and collect water samples for analysis of nutrients, phytoplankton pigments, and colored dissolved organic matter (CDOM) using a SBE-25 CTD Rosette Water Carousel.

    Satlantic Micro-SAS measures the amount of sunlight reflecting off the water's surface.
    Scientists also collect data for light attenuation using a Licor 1000. Measurements are made from the surface down to a depth of seven meters. A secchi disk is used to measure relative water clarity. More detailed observations are made of surface reflectance, upwelling radiance and downwelling irradiance using Satlantic instrumentation. Scientists use a gunwale-mounted Satlantic Micro-SAS to measure surface reflectance versus total solar irradiance. A Satlantic water column profiler is then deployed to measure upwelling radiance and downwelling irradiance. Data from the Satlantic instruments are used to calibrate satellites for remote sensing efforts in the nearshore coastal ocean off North Carolina.

     

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