Scientists are on board the R/V JOIDES Resolution for two months to
investigate the interaction of currents and monsoons in and around
Western Australia. They retrieve and analyze ocean floor core samples
that carry clue’s to Earth’s past.
The International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) conducts scientific
ocean drilling expeditions throughout the world’s oceans in search of
clues to Earth’s past. The current expedition is Expedition 356:
Indonesian Throughflow, aboard the U.S. vessel for scientific ocean
drilling, the JOIDES Resolution (http://www.joidesresolution.org). On
this expedition we are investigating the interaction of currents and
monsoons in and around Western Australia. We’ll do that by drilling
sediment samples from six different sites in the northwest Australian
shelf, to see how sediments have changed over the last 5 million years.
We’ll use the data we collect to work out how the Indonesian Throughflow
and Leeuwin Currents have changed over this time, and the patterns of
the northwest Australian monsoon over the same period. We will also use
our data to study the movement of the Australian tectonic plate. The
scientific objectives are to: Look at the history of the Indonesian
throughflow and Leeuwin current a. See how the flow of these currents
has affected the development of reef systems Look at how these currents
have affected climate a. Understand the history and changes of the
Australian monsoon b. Understand the nature and timing of aridity
(dryness) in Australia Construct subsidence curves a. Better visualize
the vertical movement of the Australian plate b. Investigate changes in
sea level c. Look at the subsidence history A team of 30 scientists from
around the globe are on board for two months to work on these questions.
Hand-in-hand with the amazing technology required to drill deep into the
ocean floor, we are collecting the core samples that hold clues to
answer these questions. Join us to ask us anything about this intriguing
science, how we got here, what we hope to discover, and our lives on
board the ship! We will be back at 1 pm ET (10 am PT, 5 pm UTC) to
answer your questions, ask us anything!