On this voyage, the research team of Anthony, Dominique, Elisa, and Jazmine studied salinity for their presentation project, collecting samples as the ship traveled from Gravesend Bay to the Palisades. Their results were unusual compared to the results of past voyages; usually, the Hudson River reaches 0 ppt (completely fresh water) near Newburgh Bay, but in this case, the water turned completely fresh shortly after entering the Hudson River. Why? Rain! Runoff from Hurricane Irene and subsequent recent storms is still coursing through the Hudson River watershed.
The team recorded their most significant change in salinity while the ship was anchored at Bay Ridge Flats. The team took water samples as a tidal boll passed under the ship — a visually distinctive swell of water formed as the incoming seawater pushes its way into the outflowing river water. Within a span of 20 minutes, the team recorded a drop in salinity of 6 ppt — quite a dramatic difference!