Diary entryDiary entry
Leaving Kelheim for Geisling on the 15th
Air-lift sampling in Kelheim
Scientists analyze samples on-board the Argus
Location map

A challenging start A challenging start

Location: Kelheim, Germany

After the Regensburg launch on August 14, the JDS2 Scientific Team set out for sampling station 2 in Kelheim on the Danube. This would be the first sampling stop for the Argus scientific ship. Unfortunately, the current was very strong, making the trip upstream very slow. Getting through the locks along the way also slowed the trip. Arriving in Kelheim only at dark, the ship was forced to try to land at a private dock, as no landing arrangements had been expected for Kelheim. After a discussion with the surprised owner, taxis brought the crew back to Regensburg where the Széchényi ship was waiting for them. While the Széchényi had been expected to wait for the crew at Deggendorf further downstream because of earlier heavy rains (see August 11 diary entry), the crew had decided on the morning of the 14th that the Széchényi come to Regensburg. Good thing! After a long day, the crew from the Argus finally got some sleep on the Széchényi.

On the 15th at 5:30 am, taxis returned the crew to the Argus in Kelheim. By 9:00, Kelheim sampling was completed, and the Argus started back downstream to sampling site 3 in Geisling. Finally, both the Argus and Széchényi arrived in Geisling. Once the sampling was done. the ships quickly started to head toward the 4th sampling site at Deggendorf but again the sunlight was fading fast. For the security of ship and crew, the Argus decided to stop at Straubing, falling short of reaching Deggendorf. To catch up, three committed scientists stayed up late on the Argus, processing the samples, and then sleeping on the ship laboratory floor. The rest of the crew continued on the Széchényi to Regensburg, ending the long day at 21:30.

"The crew and scientific team have been working very hard," says Jaroslav Slobodnik, JDS2 Technical Coordinator. "Many wake up at around 4:30 and end the day around 10:00 or 11:00, at times sleeping on a floor. The German national scientific team has also been busy helping and preparing their own samples in parallel. We're about one site behind schedule and we've met some serious barriers. Nonetheless, optimism and cooperation remain high on-board."

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