SMU students testing coring gear off the pier. (Photos by Joey F.)

An update from Brett, a geophysics major:

We flew into Kingston’s airport and arrived at Morgan’s Harbour Hotel in Port Royal at about 3 p.m. After a long day of flying, it was great to finally get settled into the hotel and be in the Tropics.

Cliff beside the seismic chirp system.

After a debriefing by Professor Hornbach, we divided into specific groups based on our project goals and interests for the week. These groups include a group responsible for seismic imaging, a group responsible for sediment coring, and a group interested in slope stability surveying. One key goal for this study is to integrate multiple datasets so that we can begin to determine areas prone to slope failure if an earthquake occurs. Today these groups tested equipment and methods to make sure everything worked smoothly for when the real research begins tomorrow.

After spending a few hours making sure all the equipment is functional, we had a dinner of fish sandwiches and burgers right on the water. I think the temperature was somewhere around 85 degrees; couldn’t get much better.

Ben examining seismic data display tests.

After dinner we then met back up and went over what each groups’ goals are for tomorrow and where they are going to conduct their research. We also began to record the methods we plan to use and present over the next several days.

Overall, it was a hectic day of travel and preparation, but after a good night’s sleep, we will all be ready for the days to come.