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IODP Expedition 403

Eastern Fram Strait Paleo-Archive


Daily science report for 13 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: All groups continued their laboratory training. In the early afternoon, the Ship’s Captain, Operations Superintendent, Offshore Installation Manager (OIM), Tool Pusher, Ice Navigators, Co-Chief Scientists, and EPM held the prespud meeting, discussing the operations and ice management at proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618).

The vessel is underway to proposed Site VRE-03 at full speed and completed 282 nmi of the transit at an average speed of 11.8 kt. We are estimated to arrive on site in the morning on 14 June. The ship has transited 1578 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 99 nmi remaining.


Daily science report for 12 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: All groups continued their laboratory training and submitted their methods chapters to the Science Office for review. In the morning and afternoon, the Operations Superintendent gave a tour of the vessel to scientists and new technical staff.

The vessel is underway at full speed to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) and completed 262 nmi of the transit at an average speed of 10.9 kt. It is estimated to arrive on site the morning of 14 June. The ship has transited 1296 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 381 nmi remaining.


Daily science report for 11 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: All groups continued their specific laboratory training and worked on their methods. The Geochemistry Laboratory technicians, microbiologists, Curator, Assistant Laboratory Officers, Co-Chief Scientists, and EPM met several times to discuss the workflow and laboratory protocols for taking sedimentary ancient DNA (sedaDNA) samples. At 1300 h, the vessel crossed the Arctic Circle and King Neptune visited Expedition 403. All aboard proved worthy to become members of the Order of the Blue Nose. We are now sailing in the Domain of the Polar Bear.

The vessel is underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) at increasing speed as weather eases, and has completed 214 nmi of the transit at an average speed of 8.9 kt. It is estimated the vessel will arrive on site in the early afternoon on 14 June. The ship has transited 1034 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 643 nmi remaining.


Daily science report for 10 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: All groups continued their specific laboratory training and worked on their methods. Several meetings were held to discuss sampling strategies as well as measurement intervals for the physical properties loggers.

The vessel is underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) at reduced speed due to weather and sea conditions, and has completed 195 nmi of the transit at an average speed of 8.1 kt. It is estimated to cross the Arctic Circle on 11 June, and arrive on site late on 14 June. The ship has transited 820 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 857 nmi remaining.


Daily science report for 9 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: In two groups, one for the day shift and one for the night shift, all scientists attended tours explaining the core flow in the laboratories. In the morning, the Operations Superintendent gave an introduction to IODP drilling and coring operations. All scientists continued to familiarize themselves with their laboratories and worked on their methods.

The vessel is underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) at reduced speed due to weather and sea conditions, and it is estimated to arrive on site early on 14 June. The ship transited 205 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 1052 nmi remaining.


Daily science report for 8 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: The vessel is underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) at reduced speed due to weather and sea conditions. The technicians continued to set up the laboratories. The vessel transited 240 nmi of the 1677 nmi journey, with 1257 nmi remaining. The ship is estimated to arrive onsite late on 13 June.

All scientists gave short presentations of their academic background and their individual science objectives for Expedition 403. This was followed by a presentation from the Curator on IODP core curation and sampling. In the afternoon, the Co-Chief Scientists, Curator, and EPM attended multiple meetings with different laboratory groups. All groups continued their laboratory orientation and worked on their methods.


Daily science report for 7 June 2024

Location: Underway to proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618)

Science Update: The pilot boarded the vessel at 0730 h, the tugboats arrived at 0800 h, the last line was away at 0810 h, and the journey to our first site began. The ship entered the Ijmuiden lock at 0953 h and cleared it at 1029 h. At 1030 h the vessel entered the North Sea and headed toward proposed Site VRE-03 (Site U1618) at full speed. The pilot departed the vessel at 1100 h. At the end of the day, the vessel completed 180 nmi of the 1677 nmi transit.

Throughout the day, all scientists attended laboratory-specific safety orientations and worked on their methods chapters. The Expedition Project Manager (EPM) gave a presentation on the expedition’s goals and methods. This was followed by a presentation from the Publications Specialist on IODP publication conventions and obligations. At 1300 h, a boat drill for all scientists, staff, and crew members was conducted. In the afternoon, the Co-Chief Scientists, Curator, Laboratory Officer and Assistant Laboratory Officers, and EPM attended multiple meetings with different laboratory groups.


Daily science report for 6 June 2024

Location: Damen Shipyard Berth #4, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Science Update: Two remaining JRSO staff members boarded the vessel in the early afternoon. All scientists met in the conference room for welcome and safety presentations by the Ship’s Captain and Ship’s Doctor. This was followed by presentations from the Co-Chief Scientists and the Expedition Project Manager. Safety instructions included cold weather training and practicing the donning and doffing the survival suits. The pilot is scheduled to board the vessel at 0730 h on 7 June for departure.


Daily science report for 5 June 2024

Location: Damen Shipyard Berth #4, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Science Update: At 0954 h, the science party and three Outreach Officers went through immigration and boarded the vessel. The scientists met in the conference room for welcome and orientation, life at sea, and safety presentations. In the early afternoon, everyone attended ship safety orientation tours led by the Laboratory Officer and the two Assistant Laboratory Officers.

Other port call activities included laboratory assessment and setup by the technicians, as well as initial training for new JRSO staff.

The vessel is scheduled to depart on 7 June.


Daily science report for 4 June 2024

Location: Damen Shipyard Berth #4, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Science Update: At 1015 h, IODP Expedition 403 Eastern Fram Strait Paleo-Archive officially began in the port of Amsterdam, Netherlands. Twenty-three IODP JRSO staff members, both Co-Chief Scientists, and two Ice Navigators boarded the vessel. Port call activities included the crossover between offboarding and oncoming staff, safety orientation, and the moving of D-tubes out of the reefer to make space for the anticipated high recovery of sediment cores.

In the early afternoon, the Ice Navigators gave their first assessment of the sea ice situation at >79°N, the location of proposed Sites VRE-03A and VRW-03A.

The oncoming science party continued to arrive in Amsterdam and will board the following day.

The research area of Expedition 403 is the Eastern Fram Strait, the only deepwater passage connecting the central Arctic Ocean with the Northern Atlantic and lower latitudes. Eastern Fram Strait is defined by the warm, northward flowing Western Spitzbergen Current, the northernmost branch of the Gulf Stream System. By looking at the northward flowing current, which moves heat, salt, and moisture into the high Arctic, Expedition 403 will collect crucial data from an area where profound changes in Earth’s climate history are stored in the sedimentary record. The expedition stands out in significance as it will return with data to understand better some of the most pressing details of the current climate crisis. Expedition 403 is the final JOIDES Resolution cruise under the current phase of IODP.