15 Sep '12, 1pm

[Blog] The first 'seaglider' (in hot rod pink) is away on the #NASAspurs ocean salinity expedition.

[Blog] The first 'seaglider' (in hot rod pink) is away on the #NASAspurs ocean salinity expedition.

We just launched the first of our autonomous vehicles – a pink Seaglider with the sexy name of #189. The story of Seaglider 189 begins. Underwater gliders are the longest-range autonomous undersea vehicles in the oceans by virtue of their very simple propulsion mechanism: the translation of a vertical force into an horizontal one through use of wings. Gliders adjust their buoyancy by alternately inflating and deflating a small swim bladder appended to the vehicle’s body, a mostly rigid pressure hull. A volume variation of only a couple of thousandths of the overall vehicle’s volume is enough to provide an upward or downward buoyancy force that balances a combination of lift and drag forces, resulting in forward and vertical motion, the essence of gliding. Gliders, in effect, use wings as their propellers. About an hour away from deployment. Once made heavy, Seagliders sink...

Full article: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/blogs/fromthefield/2012/...

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[Blog] We are underway: the #NASAspurs ocean salinity expedition is now at sea!

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