Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Dana Fields's Internship, Summer 2013 - Part 1

Hello all! My name is Dana Fields and I teach chemistry and environmental science at James S. Rickards High School in Tallahassee, Florida. I’m extremely excited about this opportunity to work on a project with Dr. Nico Wienders, a physical oceanography professor at FSU. Because I have a MS in chemical oceanography (also from FSU), this is an amazing chance for me to "go back to school' for the summer and continue to learn about the intense interactions between Earth's physical, chemical and biological systems.

My primary task this summer will be to work with data collected by the CTD-Diver instruments that were deployed at the head of the De Soto Canyon (an erosional valley that cuts through the broad continental shelf in the northern part of the Gulf of Mexico) from May 2012-May 2013. These instruments recorded temperature and salinity at different depths every 3 minutes for a year! I am learning use MATLAB to illustrate and publish this data so it will be available to the various Deep-C scientists. If all goes well, we will be able to investigate the different physical mechanisms (like waves, tides, eddies, upwellings, river plume interactions, etc.) responsible for inducing the variations in the data. Deep-C scientists from other disciplines may be able to use our data/findings to further their own research.

This week, I’ve been researching the scope of the Deep-C and GoMRI initiatives. I’ve already come up with several lesson ideas I intend to develop for use in my classroom. That’s been fascinating and fun… and I’m sure my students will appreciate the effort! Learning to use the MATLAB software is more of a challenge and will take more work. I look forward to meeting that challenge… after I get back from the research cruise scheduled for next week. As you see, I have a busy summer ahead!

Posted By:
Dana Fields, Florida State University

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