Since getting back from Devon, the last 10 days have been pretty non-stop.
I am researching the potential of glacial flour as a novel fertiliser. However, the quantity required and the samples we had here at Bristol Glaciology just weren't enough for the laboratory investigation we had planned. SO.... On Wednesday last week, Jemma, Jon and I came up with the plan that I would go to Iceland ASAP to collect some samples.
I fly Sunday 30th October and return Thursday 3rd November. All the risk assessments are complete, the trip is planned and I feel as trip leader, we are good to go (only after a solid day of sleep tomorrow though!). The amount of kit we are taking just for 5 days is pretty astonishing; I hope it will all fit into the Plucky Yaris to get to the airport!
The team consists of myself, Guillaume (PhD student) and Mike (PhD student). We are going to be sampling glacial flour and rocks from all along the S and SE coast of Iceland, it looks like it will be an unforgettable field trip!
In other news - I have started using a Midi PAM to look at fluorescence as a measure of plant stress. The picture below shows the set up - I think it is awesome that you can see the fluorescence live on the laptop! What does it mean? Well when a plant is happy and it is photosynthesising well, the levels of fluorescence are lower than if it is unhappy and photosynthesis has been affected. It is a pretty cool noninvasive way of looking at plant health. There is a great paper by Maxwell & Johnson (2000) explaining the process.
That is all for now! - Fingers crossed Iceland goes to plan - I'll hopefully find time to post some updates and maybe some pictures....