RRS Discovery

29th AMT research cruise sets sail


PML scientists are on board a research cruise that will spend six weeks sailing from the UK to Chile, taking samples and measurements along the route to contribute to various scientific projects.

The 29th Atlantic Meridional Transect (AMT) cruise departed Southampton on Sunday 13th October heading for Punta Arenas in Chile. Over the next six weeks, PML researchers will continue observations of biological and chemical processes taking place in surface waters of the Atlantic Ocean that have been made annually for the last 24 years. The team on board are being led by Chief Scientist Dr Giorgio Dall’Olmo and include participants from the UK, Spain, Russia, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, India and Venezuela.

AMT is an interdisciplinary scientific programme, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council's National Capability, undertaking biological, chemical and physical oceanographic research during an annual voyage between the UK and destinations in the South Atlantic. This journey crosses a range of marine ecosystems from sub-polar to tropical and from shelf seas and upwelling systems to mid-ocean gyres.

During this expedition the team will be reporting back to the European Space Agency (ESA) to validate measurements made by their state-of-the-art satellites; will be reporting on long-term trends in biodiversity and CO2 concentrations of the water and atmosphere; and will investigate the impact of Saharan dust on biological processes in the North Atlantic.

Dr Andy Rees, PML Senior Scientist and AMT Principal Investigator, said: "Not only has AMT delivered sustained observations of ocean processes over approximately 100°latitude for over two decades but also provides the unique opportunity for researchers to access the infrequently sampled waters of the North and South Atlantic Ocean."

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