Panama Coral Reefs

Panama Coral Reefs

Antarctic SeaScience

Antarctic SeaScience

Monday, March 16, 2015

Expedition Success!

Having just arrived back in Punta Arenas, Chile, our Antarctic expedition has officially come to an end.

Reflecting back over the last few weeks, our team has managed to execute a very successful research expedition!

In imaging over 400,000 square meters of the Antarctic deep seafloor, we were able to create a picture of this greatly unstudied area of the ocean.  We were able to successfully photograph hundreds of king crabs on the Antarctic continental slope, as well as all the other organisms that make up this unique community, and even discover some whale falls along the way.

One of the many images taken of a king crab on the Antarctic deep seafloor.

SeaSled, our underwater camera vehicle, being lowered into the water.
This instrument took over 250,000 photographs of the seafloor in the last three weeks.

Our team also had great success in collecting samples from the Antarctic deep seafloor, despite the immense difficulties involved in sampling at such deep ocean depths.  We were able to successfully collect king crabs from the Antarctic deep seafloor, as well as many of the other species of organisms that call this extreme environment their home.

One of the king crabs we collected from the Antarctic deep seafloor.

A brittle star collected using a trawl net.
Although our expedition is at its end, there are still so many conclusions and discoveries to be made as our team analyzes the data and samples we've collected.

As we say a bitter sweet goodbye to our research vessel, we are excited about the immense potential for new scientific discoveries to be made about this incredible and unstudied part of the world.

Our team in Marguerite Bay, on the Western Antarctic Peninsula.  Team members from Florida Institute of Technology, University of Alabama Birmingham, and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

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