1. Who are you, where are you from, what is your role in the project?
My role in this project is to insure that a key piece of instrumentation, the AIS iSea-III, is in proper working order for the expedition. This instrument will allow for the simultaneous determination of chemical species in the subseafloor hydrothermal fluids. In addition to this I will be testing our new electrochemical designs aboard DSV Alvin and deploying other electrochemical equipment with the CTD over several vent fields.
2. What questions/problems are you addressing/trying to answer, & why?
I am currently investigating a new type of electrode cleaning procedure that will allow electrodes / sensors, to be deployed for many months without the need for cleaning. This new method will allow sensors to be deployed and not loose sensitivity or become biofouled over long periods of time. By having this new patent-pending technique available, long term deployments of sensors/ electrodes can be made at various observatory sites.
3. What brought you to your current career position (how'd you come to be in marine sciences-related field?)?
I have always done electrochemistry, from a BS student to my PhD I have always used electrochemistry to answer unique questions about our environment. From working in the pharmaceutical industry to developing electrochemical analyzers for EG&G Princeton Applied Research, I have always enjoyed instrument development. I especially enjoy instrument development when practical applications of that technology can be used to solve real world questions. Many years ago I had the idea to apply my laboratory instruments to analyzing key reduce species in the environment. I received several SBIR grants which allowed me to develop the instruments which we are using on this expedition. I have done in-situ electrochemistry for many years starting with simple profiling of microbial mats in a marsh to profiling the water column in the Black Sea. As an analytical chemist I enjoy the challenge of analyzing the environment and acquiring the data in real time.