Yoshiko-san, good job!

Ms. Yoshiko ISHIKAWA (Marine Works Japan) is a reliable and friendly marine technician. She is doing the nutrients analysis of water samplings from CTD and bucket. The nutrients are chemical compounds including P (phosphorus), N (nitrogen), Si (silicon) for growing phytoplankton. They cannot be measured by any electrical sensors and we need hand-operated procedures by marine technicians who have special skills for the analysis. In fact, Motesaku didn’t care of nutrients. After Yoshiko-san’s explanations, Motesaku understands the importance of the nutrients. Yoshiko-san, good job!

Happy New Year, Happy New Shower, Happy New Night Rainbow.

Happy New Year! We continue to do the air-sea interaction observation over the Indian Ocean. Till 00 UTC (07LST) on 1 January 2018, we have completed 225 casts of the TurboMAP. I felt the MJO arrival from the night rainbow under a search light (see photo) due to the heavy rainfall over 100 mm/hour at the beginning of this new year. The Rising Sun is always in our hearts.


Mirai on New Year’s Eve

In the R/V Mirai, we eat “Toshi-Koshi-Soba” which is buckwheat noodles customarily eaten on New Year’s Eve in addition to usual dinner and “Shime-Nawa” is ornamented at several important places. The Rising-Sun and JAMSTEC flag are raised beyond the main table in the dining room. Even while we continue to do observations, we can do well by our national culture for a happy new year.

We love the both.

The 1st picture shows the reliable marine technician’s back view when the CTD frame is going into the sea water. Because the sea surface gives the sensors a shock, watching is one of the important procedures for him. So, who is him?

The 2nd picture shows Mr. Hiroki USHIROMURA (Marine Works Japan) laughing between Dr. HORII and Motesaku. It assures you of our friendship. The both of his reliable back and bright face are necessary for us during the long cruise.


Flying wave glider

Today, we have recovered the wave glider “Umihei” at 4S101E that was deployed at the location of the Sumatra m-TRITON buoy 5S100E on 3 December (the 1st picture). It was moving around the Sumatra buoy to gain the validation data and swam using wave’s forcing to the stationary observation point of R/V Mirai. It also gained horizontal variations around R/V Mirai. We were deeply impressed with its return after a lot of challenges.

Mr. Makito YOKOTA (JAMSTEC/Department of Marine Technology Development Center) who is in charge of the development of various optional functions on the wave glider is at the left edge of the 2nd picture. He meets the demands of researchers over trouble-shooting and develops “Umihei” like a child raising with warm affection.

Now, it’s our turn to raise “Umihei” by using the data. Fly, “Umihei”, toward the future of the air-sea interaction research.

Motesaku (looking forward to using the data)

With BMKG members

In the evening of the day of press release, I went to dinner at a cafe in the downtown with BMKG members. Since not only local foods but also western foods can be eaten in the cafe, I ate special hamburger. The taste is “Enak sekali”. Thank you very much for inviting me to the cafe. Of course, I check the name of cafe and introduce it to our group. (tk)


Lightsaber between the Galaxy and lightning

When the green laser beam like a lightsaber of “The Star Wars” from the Mirai LIDAR pointed at 3 o’clock (LST) before daybreak on 29 December 2017, frequent lightning flashed due to the diurnal convection over Sumatra against the Galaxy.

Left: RICHO THETA S 360 photo with ISO light sensitivity 1600 and shutter speed of 60 seconds
Right: cloud image by NOAA


The Mirai Corps Survivor

Mr. Masanori MURAKAMI operating the winch for the TurboMAP is on the left side of this picture. He has the multiple functions: a chief radio operator, purser, and technical officer. His brave figure wearing a dark glass, yellow helmet, and orange life jacket fits perfectly my ideal image of a hero. Go! The Mirai Corps Survivor!


Press release


Yesterday (Dec 27), BPPT, BMKG, and JAMSTEC colleagues took interview from the local media and introduced what is going on at Bengkulu as well as onboard the R/V Mirai, and how important our YMC campaign is for understanding and prediction of local and global weather-climate.
Without understanding and collaboration by local people, we cannot conduct this campaign. We believe the locals now understand why Bengkulu was chosen as a super site of this intensive observation.
Local media immediately sent out news. Some can be found from below. (Note. Mostly are in Indonesian.)

<Bengkulu News>

<Kompas TV Bengkulu>

<TVRI Bengkulu>


State of the art things in the R/V Mirai

The sophisticated steering skills of the R/V Mirai are needed considering the situation of waves, currents, and winds when we do CTD and TurboMAP on the right side of the vessel. Mate Nunome (left) communicates with the crew and operator of the observations by radio. Captain Akutagawa (right) correctly judges and softly steers.

The R/V Mirai has stayed for more than 20 days but she is easy to be affected by waves, currents, and winds when her speed is slow. Then, various steering skills are necessary depending on any situations. When we do radiosonde, her heading direction should be changed so that winds blow from the left side and balloon goes away to the right side. When we do CTD and TurboMAP just after the radiosonde, her heading direction should be changed to the opposite so that she is moved by winds away from the sensor cable to avoid troubles under the vessel.

Now you see, R/V Mirai is always moving around the same location and all observations, which need various vessel’s conditions, are safely realized without a break. Now, that’s what Motesaku wants to call such comprehensive but invisible skills “state of the art.” Such skills consist of so many operations, reports, and judgements.

The R/V Mirai changes her heading direction for observations and there is few chances that sunset is on her heading direction. I want to say something for this moment.

“What a artistic!”