Flexibility and adaptability …..

….. are an art.

The first deployment of the post-COVID area is complete – six OBSs are in the water and sitting on the seabed recording micro-earthquakes for the next five months.

Working around oceanic islands always makes for spectacular scenery, whether that be from the plane on arrival …

or from at-sea whilst transiting between deployment sites.

For this particular study the Portuguese Navy provided the vessel as part of their Disaster Mitigation Plan – not what we are normally used to, and an activity not what the crew were used to doing either!

The lab space work area onboard turned out to be rather cramped with some seating to match the holiday feel of the destination – but if there is one thing that we are good at, it is adapting to our surroundings and making the best of what we have available.

After a very challenging shipping, mainly due to the customs documentation, the instrumentation arrived safe and sound and was loaded onto the vessel for readying for deployment.

And six ocean-bottom instruments were readied in swift order …

and lined up, lashed down, and ready to go.

We suspect the crew will be keen to get the RIB out for the recoveries as well.

And the reason for the study – to understand how magma ascends from the deep Earth and erupts on the seabed over and over again to build the islands.

Continuing to erupt and forming a hazard to those that populate them.

A recent eruption has formed a new cone within the crater, with the erupting magma filling the crater until it overflows and runs down the side of the island until it meets the sea.

Understanding this system – or more specifically when an eruption might occur – enables risk assessment and disaster mitigation planning.

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