Shiyan 3 vessel sails in Indian Ocean with ECNU scientists on board


“Shiyan 3” Vessel

SIX ECNU researchers sailed through the Indian Ocean on the “Shiyan 3” after it departed from Guangzhou, capital of South China’s Guangdong Province on March 15.

The ship of South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, left Xinzhou Port in Guangzhou with 35 scientists from 13 research institutions on board. Among them were Academician Zhang Jing with ECNU’s State Key Lab of Estuarine and Coastal Research, and five of his students - Zhang Xiaohui, Wang Yao, Ma Yuxi, Zhang Yixue and Tang Ming.

Academician Zhang Jing and his students investigate the surface water of the South China Sea.

The expedition will cover 13,000 plus nautical miles in 83 days.

The scientists incorporated trace elements and profile sampling into their analysis of lead accumulation in surface waters, in which they studied the distribution, behavioral factors, and sources.

A week ahead of the scheduled take off, Zhang’s team arrived to make preparations for the mission - ostensibly to survey lab equipment and all of the ship’s key apparatus.

As the ship sailed through the mouth of the Pearl River, Academician Zhang took the opportunity to teach his students a variety of techniques for the mission, such as how to use the navigational equipment on the ship, collect water samples, and measure chemical parameters within the range of quality control on the water’s surface. This was in order to explore the primary causes of such chemical parameters (i.e. fluctuations) in the surface waters of the South China Sea and East Indian Ocean.

Academician Zhang Jing and his students are on  the vessel.

Indeed, scientists encounter more hazards when carrying out research in the sea than on the mainland. Zhang, in his 60s, ensure that his students wear protective gear and he himself is always the one who takes on the most challenging roles.

Due to high exposure under the sun, near the location of the equator, the scientists and students on board the “Shiyan 3” are prone to dehydration and heat stroke. Nontheless, Zhang guides the young oceanographers with his wisdom and experience at sea.

After sailing for 40 days “Shiyan 3” made a short stay in Sri Lanka for water and fuel supply before setting sail again in the Indian Ocean. The scientists have been at sea for 56 days in total. 


East China Normal University