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Miller Freeman Cruise MF97-09A

September 8 - September 18, 1997

Richard Brodeur, Chief Scientist
Alaska Fisheries Science Center
7600 Sand Point Way, NE
Seattle, Washington 98115



RADM John C. Albright, Director
Pacific Marine Center
Seattle, WA 98102


/S/ Eddie N. Bernard  
Dr. Eddie N. Bernard, Director
Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory
Seattle, WA 98115
 /S/ James W. Balsiger
Dr. James W. Balsiger, Director
Alaska Fisheries Science Center
Seattle, WA 98115

13 May 1997


Cruise No: MF97-09A

Area: Southeast Bering Sea

Depart September 8 -- Dutch Harbor
Touch and Go September 18 -- St. Paul

Participating organizations:
NOAA - Alaska Fisheries Science Center (AFSC)
NOAA - Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory (PMEL)
UCI - University of California, Irvine
NURP - National Undersea Research Program


Fisheries Oceanography Coordinated Investigations (FOCI) is an effort by academic and federal scientists to understand ecosystems and biological and physical processes that cause recruitment variability of commercially valuable fish and shellfish stocks in Alaskan waters. FOCI comprises Shelikof Strait FOCI, Bering Sea FOCI, and Southeast Bering Sea Carrying Capacity (SEBSCC). Presently research is focused on the western Gulf of Alaska and the southeastern Bering Sea to examine the affects of the biotic and abiotic environment on the ecosystem and the early life stages of walleye pollock. FOCI uses four scientific approaches: environmental monitoring, process studies, retrospective analyses, and modeling. Research cruises address the first two approaches.

Continue acquisition of long-term biological and physical time series,
Conduct acoustic and trawl survey of juvenile walleye pollock for examining distributions in relation to hydrographic fronts,
Collect samples of juvenile pollock for studies of growth, feeding, pathology, and condition,
Examine vertical distribution of pollock and other biota using nets and a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV),
Examine impact of midwater and demersal predators upon juvenile pollock,
Examine distribution and feeding of seabird and marine mammal predators in the vicinity of the Pribilof Islands,
Examine jellyfish distribution and ecology.


1.1. Chief Scientist:

Dr. Richard D. Brodeur M/USA AFSC
(206) 526-4318 [voice]; (206) 526-6723 [FAX]

The Chief Scientist has the authority to revise or alter the technical portion of the instructions as work progresses provided that, after consultation with the Commanding Officer, it is ascertained that the proposed changes will not: (1) jeopardize the safety of personnel or the ship; (2) exceed the overall time allotted for the project; (3) result in undue additional expenses; (4) alter the general intent of these project instructions.

1.2 Participating Scientists:

 Name Gender/Nationality Affiliation
 Matthew Wilson  M/USA  AFSC
 Jeff Napp  M/USA  AFSC
 Morgan Busby  M/USA  AFSC
 Claudia Mills  F/USA  UW
 Lisa Britt  F/USA  AFSC
 Frank Morado  M/USA  AFSC
 Tiffany Vance  F/USA  PMEL
 Glen Taylor  M/USA  NURP
 Chris Baier  F/USA  UW/JISAO
 Mary Beth Decker  F/USA  UCI
 Tabitha Mattson  F/USA  NMML
 Richard Thall  M/USA  Teacher-at-sea

1.3 Ship Operations Contact:
Larry Mordock
(206) 553 - 4764
1801 Fairview Ave. East
Seattle, WA 98102-3767

1.4 Program Contacts:

Dr. Phyllis Stabeno
7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
(206) 526-6453
Dr. Arthur Kendall, Jr.
7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
(206) 526-4108


Scheduling of individual activities will depend upon weather conditions and progress of scientific work, therefore, firm advance scheduling of events will not be possible, and a continual dialogue between scientific and ship's personnel will be especially important. To insure fulfillment of all the scientific objectives, the ship is asked to steam at maximum cruising speed whenever time in transit and between stations is greater than one hour.

A standard oceanographic watch will be utilized which consists of a winch operator, a scientific staff of three and a Survey Tech on deck. Operations will be conducted 24 hours a day.

2.1 SUMMARY OF ACTIVITIES (See Table 1 and Figure 1):

The summary below is the tentative order of execution. The order of activities will be determined by the Chief Scientist.

a) Proceed to offshore end Line D off St. George Island (Fig. 1) and begin CTD survey heading north. Stations should be approximately 9 km apart, but closer spacing may be needed in the area of the front. Water bottles for collecting nutrients, chlorophylls and microzooplankton samples should be used at stations specified by the project scientists. An acoustic transect should be done both day and night on this transect. ROV deployments, MOCNESS tows and Methot, anchovy or bottom trawls will be made along this transect at stations specified by the chief scientist. Up to 2 days will be spent at this transect.

b) Proceed to the inner front of Line C on the other side of St. George. (Fig. 1). Conduct similar physical, biological and acoustic sampling operations as described in previous section over a complete diel cycle (2 days) sampling both at the front and on both sides of the front.

c) Proceed to front on Line B south of St. Paul and continue physical, acoustical and biological sampling as before (2 days).

d) Proceed to front on Line A north of St. Paul and continue physical, acoustical and biological sampling as before (2 days).

e) Depending on progress of the survey, the ship will either proceed to the Pribilof Canyon area (Fig. 1) to do extra ROV deployments as before or it may return to an area of high pollock density determined previously and do a full diel series sampling at least 48 hours at the same station. At any time during the sampling when large aggregations of pollock or seabirds are observed, additional sampling will be requested at that location. Depending on weather, several biologists will be deployed on the rhib boat to collect seabirds. If there is more time available at the end, an additional diel series or several acoustic transects with trawl sampling will be requested.

f) The cruise will end with a touch-and-go at St. Paul and all scientists will disembark.

A standard oceanographic watch will be utilized which consists of a winch operator, a scientific staff of three and a survey tech on deck. Operations will be conducted 24 hours a day. A fishing crew will be required to assist with the MOCNESS, Methot, midwater or bottom trawls, which may be conducted in daytime or nighttime. A survey tech and winch operator will be needed for CTD, bongo and ROV operations. These will be conducted at times and locations to be determined by the Chief Scientist, based on acoustic signal and juvenile abundance. Collections of juvenile pollock for growth and condition studies will be made during the juvenile survey.


Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).

Relevant Sections:
2.2.1 CTD/Water Operations
2.2.2 MARMAP bongo tow
2.2.5 MOCNESS tows
2.2.7 Methot trawl
2.2.8 Midwater trawls
2.2.10 Chlorophyll Samples
2.2.12 EK-500
2.2.13 ADCP
2.2.14 Radiometer
3.4 Seachest and Uncontaminated Seawater


The following systems and their associated support services are essential to the cruise. Sufficient consumables, back-up units, and on-site spares and technical support must be in place to assure that operational interruptions are minimal. All measurement instruments are expected to have current calibrations, and all pertinent calibration information shall be included in the data package

3.1 Equipment and Capabilities to be Provided by the Ship

SEAS XBT launcher, recorder, and probes for synoptic weather report,

Oceanographic winch with slip rings and 3-conductor cable terminated for CTD,

Wire-angle indicator and readout for oceanographic winch to be used with bongo tows,

Oceanographic winch for bongo net sampling with slip rings and 3-conductor cable terminated for electronic Time-Depth recorder. Wire should be capable of 1200 lb. loading,

Sea-Bird 911 plus CTD system to be used with PMEL stand (primary system)
(The underwater CTD unit should have mounts compatible with the PMEL CTD stand).

Sea-Bird 911 plus CTD system with stand (back up system)

(Each CTD system should include: underwater CTD, deck unit , tape recorder, weights, and pinger).

10-liter sampling bottles for use with rosette (10 plus 4 spares),

For CTD field corrections: IAPSO water and AUTOSAL salinometer,

Sea-Bird SBE-19 SeaCat (backup system),

Meter block for plankton tows,

Wire speed indicator and readout for port, starboard, and Rowe winches,

For meteorological observations: 2 anemometers (one the R. M. Young system interfaced to the SCS), calibrated air thermometer (wet-and dry-bulb) and a calibrated barometer and/or barograph,

Freezer space for storage of nutrient samples (blast and storage freezers),

Simrad EQ-50 echo sounder ,

JRC JFV-200R color sounder recorder,

RDI ADCP with PC-compatible data acquisition computer and SyQuest drives,

Radar-tracked drifter buoys,

Bench space in DataPlot for PCs, monitor, printer and VCR to fly MOCNESS,

Use of 486 PC in DataPlot for data analysis,

SCS (Shipboard Computer System),

Aft Rowe winch with single conductor cable and sliprings for MOCNESS,

Electrical connection between Rowe winch and DataPlot,

Stern platform should be removed and stowed priot to departure,

Laboratory space with exhaust hood, sink, lab tables and storage space,

Sea-water hoses and nozzles to wash down nets,

Adequate deck lighting for night-time operations,

Navigational equipment including GPS and radar ,

Safety harnesses for working on quarter deck and fantail,

3.2 Equipment to be Provided by the Project

Sea-Bird SBE-19 SeaCat, SBE 36 deck unit, SBE Power Data Interface Module (PDIM), and SBE 5T pump (primary system),

PMEL PC with SEASOFT software for CTD data collection and processing,

Fluorometer, light meter, and chlorophyll absorbance meter (ChlAM) to be mounted on CTD,

CTD stand modified for attachment of fluorometer,

Temperature thermistors for CTDs (one for primary system, one for back up system),

CTD rosette sampler

XBT's for project,

60-cm bongo sampling arrays,

20 cm bongo arrays,

Spare wire angle indicator,

Electronic BKG computer, printer and software,

Anchovy midwater trawl,


Methot frame and trawl,

MOCNESS, primary and spare parts, and expendables,

Super Phantom 2 ROV,

Hitachi CCD Color Video Camera,

Bathythermograph and Light Meter for ROV,

ROV cables and accessories,

Miscellaneous scientific sampling and processing equipment,

Scientific ultra-cold freezer,

Poly Nor'eastern bottom trawl,

5'x7' steel-V trawl doors (1250 lbs.)

3.3. Scientific Computer System (SCS)

Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).

3.4. Ultra-cold Freezer Requirements

Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).


Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).


5.1. Additional Investigations

Marine bird scientists will monitor bird abundances from the flying bridge during transects, and may request the use of the rigid-hull inflatable boat for collecting seabirds. Scientists will bring firearms and ammunition on board, but will check these with the XO during the cruise.

5.2. Ancillary Projects:

Ancillary tasks will be accomplished in accordance with the NOAA Fleet Standing Ancillary Instructions.

5.3. Piggyback Projects:

None at this time.


Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).

Hazardous Materials.

Additions to FOCI/AFSC chemical manifest -- none


Please refer to FOCI Standard Operating Instructions for NOAA Ship Miller Freeman, 1997 (1/13/97).


Table 1. Operations - CTD Stations (not included here)
Figure 1. CTD Stations (not included here)

EcoFOCI Project Office
7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, Washington 98115
Comments and information:
  EcoFOCI Coordinator

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