The Japanese GEOTRACES GP22 cruise is sailing in the western North Pacific Ocean

The Japanese GEOTRACES cruise on board R. V. Hakuho-maru will be sailing from 30 June to 21 August 2022* along the GEOTRACES section cruise GP22 in the western North Pacific Ocean.

It is well known that both Oyashio and Kuroshio are strong surface currents and transport trace elements from marginal seas like the Sea of Okhotsk and the East China Sea to the western North Pacific. Moreover, atmospheric dust deposition from the Asian deserts supplies huge amounts of trace elements to the western North Pacific. However, this unique area has not been sufficiently covered by the meridional GEOTRACES section cruise. In this cruise, scientists are planning to occupy 17 stations and reveal the full-depth profiles of trace elements and their isotopes (TEIs) in the western North Pacific. In this cruise, they will also obtain bottom sediments with a multiple corer and a piston corer at some stations. During Leg 1, 31 scientists and technicians, including 10 students and 1 Indonesian researcher, will join the cruise, while 32 scientists and technicians, including 12 students and 2 Indonesian researchers, will participate in Leg 2.

Cruise Chief Scientist: Dr. Hajime Obata

*Cruise KH-22-7: Leg. 1: 30 June, Tokyo – 26 July, Tokyo, Leg. 2 30 July, Tokyo – 21 August, Tokyo. A part of GP22 (Leg. 3) will be carried out in June 2023 because of a steep rise in the price of fuel.

Figure: Japanese KH-22-7 cruise track in the western North Pacific Ocean.