Taking over @realfaguib’s Instagram account for tank experiments and student cruise

This semester, Kjersti is teaching GEOF105 under very difficult circumstances. While much of the class happens virtually, both the mandatory lab experiments and the student cruise could (luckily!) happen. So we could also do our planned Instagram-takeover of @realfaguib‘s account!

For a week, we used Instagram’s “Story” function — pictures that can be annotated and that vanish after 24 hours (not completely, you can still see a whole week’s worth of posts here if you like) — to give little glimpses of what it is like to do experiments on rotating and non-rotating tanks, and to be on a research ship for the first time.

Instagram Stories turned out a really good tool for that, for example because we could insert gifs to illustrate concepts. Above, for example, the football above the rotating tank is spinning around its own axis, while the one above the non-rotating tank is not in motion.

And of course people like seeing pictures of cruises and colorful instrumentation!

After some initial hesitation, we were lucky enough that Ide and Stephanie took over our take-over and helped make it even more authentic & fun. Thank you!

Watching their story and seeing student cruises through students’ eyes was really interesting!

With between 700 and 1000 views for each image in the story (plus some really good questions related to what we do at sea!), we feel that we had a really successful week in terms of reaching current and prospective students with interesting stories about the issues at heart of GEOF105.

That said, the only thing left to say is a huge “thank you!” to captain and crew (who, after lunch break, swapped roles) of the research ship Hans Brattstrøm, and to @realfaguib for giving us the opportunity!

Stefanie’s current!

Although the Ocean still holds many secrets, it’s not very often nowadays that oceanographers discover new currents – but earlier this week one could read in NatureCommunications (and on nrk.no, in Norwegian) that scientists have drawn a new arrow on the map showing current systems in the North Sea! The “new” current brings dense water eastward along the Greenland-Scotland ridge from Iceland towards the Faroe Bank Channel, through which the dense water continues southwards into the North Atlantic.

I was very excited (and admittedly a litte bit proud!) to read about the discovery – since the paper is written by Stefanie Semper – the very first Master’s student that I supervised on my own. Stefanie has just submitted her PhD-thesis here at UiB, and I’m certain she will continue her great scientific work and that I’ll have the pleasure to read about her findings in the future!

The name of the current? Well, it’s not officially “Stefanie’s current” (although I’ll think of it as that) , but the slightly more descriptive (although boring) “the Iceland-Faroe Slope Jet”.

Stefanie’s current – (or the Iceland-Faroe Slope Jet) is the black arrow that originates north of Iceland and continues eastward towards the Faroe Bank Channel. From: Semper et al, 2020, Nature Communications. CreativeCommon License 4.0

Science is a team sport

The upside of the pandemic is that a lot of interesting meetings and presentations are streamed and recorded so that one can “shop around” and participate & listen without worrying about neither time zones nor CO2 and travel budgets.

Last night I had the pleasure to listen to Fiamma Straneo’s lecture “Ahoy captain, is that a glacier up ahead? Lessons learnt from working in Greenland’s marine margin” which is part of the International Glaciological Society Global Seminar Series (freely available here). I write “listen”, since the children’s drawers were empty and I had to do laundry at the same time – so I probably missed out on a lot of nice graphics and photos from the Greenlandic fjords that she was talking about… but I did not miss out on her conclusions:

Fiamma Straneo’s conclusions during the her talk in the IGS Global Seminar Series (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpvjxoNWSLc)

Fiamma, who is a physical oceanographer working at Scripps while holding a Prof II position at UiB, and who is very much a team-player herself, used examples from her own research – from multi-disciplinary field campaigns in remote fjord arms to the (equally) multi-disciplinary and diverse team that stands behind the ISMIP6 projections –  to support her conclusions, and she did so very convincingly. Science is indeed a team sport!

Welcome to GFI, Mari!

Yesterday Mari Myksvoll visited me and the oceanography group at GFI and we had a nice chat about fjords, oceanography, and everything in between! We are lucky to get to see Mari more regularly in the hallways from now on, as she soon will be joining us (20%) as an Associate Professor II. The paperwork is not yet in order, but the university administration better hurry up since the plan is that she will be teaching GEOF337, the master’s course in fjord oceanography, next semester. With her background in fjord and coastal modelling – and with her enthusiastic smile – I’m sure she will do a great job! And I will for sure enjoy to have another female*, fjord-interested oceanographer around! Welcome to GFI, Mari!

Mari S. Myksvoll will join us at GFI as Ass. Prof. II next semester!

* number three in the teaching staff

Science for young minds!

Our ice shelf work is now available in a “young-mind-version” – have your daughter / son / grand children / children of your neighbours / random kids in the street and everyone else with a young mind check it out here ! And have a look yourself too while you are at it! It’s a lot easier to read than the text in Nature – and the illustrations are really cute!

Many thanks to Mirjam and to the two young reviewers (Margarita and Isabel) for making this happen!

New article in Frontiers for Young Minds about ice shelves and warm ocean currents. from: https://kids.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/frym.2020.00124