The National Ocean Survey will conduct an oceanographic expedition to the Aleutian Islands this spring. Scheduled to depart Seattle April 18th, the NOAA Ship Discoverer will cross the Gulf of Alaska to the Shumagin Islands. The ship will cruise in an arc just south of the Aleutians to Attu, then return eastward in an arc north of the Aleutians in the Bering Sea to Unimak Pass. On entering the Pacific again, the ship will round the Shumagins then return to Kodiak on May 3rd.
The principal program of the expedition is to conduct oceanographic leveling between the National Ocean Survey tide stations at Kodiak, Sand Point, Dutch Harbor, Adak, Shemya, and Attu. Of equal importance is the deployment of deep-sea bottom-mounted seismographs just south of the chain in a cooperative program with the University of Texas. A water mass comparison study will also be made of Bering Sea waters north of the Aleutians and Pacific waters to the south. Sounding verification lines will be run, and a deep temperature profile will be taken across the Gulf. In addition, a biological oceanography program will be conducted for the Smithsonian Institution.