Ian Church and Lauren Quas multibeam (1)
PI Ian Church shows student Lauren Quas how to operate the Multibeam during the Fall Campaign. (photo credit: Heather Dippold)

CONCORDE’s Mission to Mentor Young Scientists Apparent in Spring Campaign and Beyond 

Two postdocs, Ali Deary and Adam Greer, took turns as Chief Scientist aboard the R/V Point Sur during the recent Spring Campaign, while three others—Kemal Cambazoglu, Sabrina Parra, and Inia Soto-Ramos—devised the cruise plan for the R/V Pelican.

Earlier in the year PhD student Adam Boyette organized and led a research cruise to study the impacts of the sudden and dramatic opening of the Bonnet Carré spillway, while working alongside Soto-Ramos to marshal CONCORDE’s resources to research a damaging harmful algal bloom in the Gulf. Read more>>>


Chief Scientist Adam Boyette (left) and Peng Ho prepare to launch the rosette. (photo credit: Ali Deary)

CONCORDE’S Adam Boyette Coordinates Multi-Consortia Bonnet Carre’ Response

On January 9, 2016, the Army Corps of Engineers diverted rising Mississippi River floodwaters via the Bonnet Carré spillway to take pressure off the New Orleans levee system. The twenty open bays on the spillway allowed fresh water to move into Lake Pontchartrain and onwards to the northern Gulf of Mexico. Exactly one month later, researchers from the GoMRI consortia CONCORDE, DEEPEND, ECOGIG, CARTHE, and ACER mobilized in Gulfport, Mississippi to spend three days aboard the R/V Point Sur sampling in areas impacted by the influx of river water. Read more>>>

Ali Deary shows off cleared and stained larval Banded Drum samples.
Ali Deary shows off cleared and stained larval Banded Drum samples. (photo credit: Tara Skelton)

Ali Deary Follows Larval Fishes through the Nearshore Water Column

“I never thought of any other career,” laughed CONCORDE postdoc Ali Deary. “It was always science.”

Sitting in her office surrounded by her work—including a tray of larval Banded Drum samples she cleared and stained ‘for fun,’ she recalled how a vision of dolphins playing during a high school trip to Virginia Beach made her realize marine science would be her final destination. Read more>>>

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Scientists from many fields work side-by-side in the Point Sur’s on-board lab space. (photo credit: Heather Dippold)

Point Sur Spring Campaign Highlights

The R/V Point Sur departed from Gulfport, Miss., on March 29 for two weeks at sea. A full suite of 18 scientists from three institutions—University of Southern Mississippi, Oregon State University, and Dauphin Island Sea Lab—worked day and night to sample near freshwater plumes in and around Mobile Bay. The first half of the cruise worked the three corridors established during the Fall Campaign, transects that characterize the Northern Gulf’s shelf region. The second leg primarily focused on the freshwater plumes coming out of Mobile Bay. Read more>>>


Crew members deploy moorings during the first half of the Pelican cruise. (photo credit: Laura Handsel)

Pelican Spring Campaign Highlights

The R/V Pelican set off from Cocodrie, Louisiana, on March 29 with ten researchers from the University of Southern Miss and the Naval Research Lab aboard. USM’s Stephan Howden served as Chief Scientist. Other investigators included USM’s Bob Arnone from the Ocean Weather Lab and NRL’s Alan Weidemann and Jeff Book, all leading teams of postdocs, students, and techs. Read More>>>


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A mud-laden BOPPER is pulled from the Gulf floor during the Bight IV cruise. (photo credit: Naomi Yoder)

Bight III and IV Cruises Overlap with Spring Campaign

Specialized sampling equipment, including underwater gliders and cutting-edge towed instruments like the ISIIS and ScanFish, characterize CONCORDE’s large coordinated efforts such as the AUV Jubilee and Fall and Spring Campaigns. At the same time these mobile adaptive sampling missions are taking place, CONCORDE scientists led by the Naval Research Lab’s (NRL) Jeff Book, are also gathering data via moorings anchored to the seafloor in several locations.  Read more >>>


CONCORDE Engages Fishing Community in Research

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Thao Vu (center, red) translates as Heather Dippold (center right, green) demonstrates to area commercial fishers how to use common sampling equipment. (photo credit: Jessie Kastler)

The plan from the outset has been to include the area’s commercial and recreational fishing community directly in CONCORDE’s research, both as learners and as participants. Step one took place when the outreach team, under the direction of Dr. Jessie Kastler, contracted boat captains Hoang Nguyen Van of D’Iberville, Mississippi, and George Barisich of Ycloskey, Louisiana to join the Fall Campaign’s data collection efforts. The two sampled alongside the Point Sur and Pelican, with mixed results due to the participants’ newness to the technology and weather constraints. Kastler felt it was an appropriate introduction to the community of just how involved—and at times frustrating—scientific research can be. Read more >>>

Stephan O’Brien launches a drifter into Mobile Bay. (photo credit: Brian Dzwonkowski)

Spring Campaign Small Boat Drifters Seek a Path to Understanding

Once again, CONCORDE investigator Brian Dzwonkowski used his specially-designed surface drifters to track the path of freshwater as it moves through Mobile Bay and out into the northern Gulf. Read more>>>


CONCORDE Educators Work with Area Teachers to Increase Oil Spill Science Awareness

On March 11 and 12, CONCORDE, in partnership with Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant, hosted an oil spill science workshop for secondary school teachers at University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory. Read more>>>


Louisiana Children Meet CONCORDE Scientists on Earth Science Day

On May 5, CONCORDE scientists travelled to Mandeville, Louisiana to participate in Ponchartrain Elementary’s Earth Science Day. Read more>>>

Summer Research Campaign Scheduled

A Summer Research Campaign, the third of CONCORDE’s coordinated multi-platform sampling efforts, will take place from July 23 to July 30. In July 2015, CONCORDE kicked off the consortium’s initiative with the AUV Jubilee, a coordinated sampling effort using automated underwater vehicles across the Gulf. Read more>>>