Have you heard of the shrunken cups? I am pretty sure that you have to have one to be considered a real ocean scientist.
Shrunken cups start off life as normal Styrofoam cups, just like the ones you have for take-away coffee. Then you draw and color and write all over them . Some folks use them as birthday cards. Other folks draw memorable things from the cruise on them. Cup art was very serious business for about two days. We cleared off one of the science benches and turned it into a crafting corner. Every time we got a break, we crowded around the table to draw on the cups.
Once we reached the station, we stuffed the cups with paper towels, bundled them into a mesh bag, and then secured to the deepest diving instrument we had.
We attached the cups to the CTD for the last station on the grid. They took a return trip to 750 meters at station W07-01 near Elephant Island.
The pressure at depth released a lot of air from the Styrofoam cells. Our cups shrank nicely, but they are still a little pliable. That means if we had sent them deeper, they would have shrank some more. On the deep sea cruises, scientists send their cups down to 2,000 or even 4,000 meters. Even though it took a relatively shallow trip, my cup still shrank about 50%. I know this because I put a one inch reference line on the bottom before I shrank it. That line is now half an inch long
I drew some of my favorite (or easiest to draw) things from the cruise all around my cup. Maybe you can recognize Clione limacina Primno macropa, and Eusirus properdentatus on my cup.
I put an emperor penguin (we saw one from a distance on this trip), and the station information on the cup.
So there you have it, I am now a cup carrying ocean scientist.