Non-glorious post number 100

Well, the cat is out of the bag. I have been super-duper busy of late. By that I mean I have been pulling around 80 hours a week on research in the field! I was holding out on my 100th post for something cool, but at this rate, I may retire before getting to it, so alas it will just have to be a simple one. Rats.

Contrary to popular belief (or at least the belief of my mom), I am alive and well…even kicking. Jordan is great also. In fact, she received a promotion of sorts, you know, the one in name only. She is now essentially managing a bank branch, sans pay raise. Maybe at her evaluation after summer things will be reciprocated. At the least, I know she is happy with the move, and the new ‘job’ as it were. I like it also. She is now ‘permanently’ at the campus branch, which means I can walk out my back door here at the office and meet her for luch on occasion, and she doesn’t have to drive any longer! She now takes the bus in, as it is more convenient, much cheaper, and hippy like. We’ve maybe driven 10 miles in the last 3 week because of this. Obviously, I am stoked! Now I’m trying to convince her to bike commute…I’m working on it.

I am doing well. Things here are busy, but I am living it up. I am trying to get my field site setup to take flow measurements later this summer, and that has been pretty intense. But, I have done some pretty cool things already, like make a topo map using a sweet Real-time Kinematics Differential GPS system that is accurate in 3-D space to 1-1.5cm. Awesome. Here is the map for kicks:

Each of those dots represents a spot where I took a GPS measurement. There are about 1200 of them, and it took me around three and a half hours to do it. The scale and axes, by the way is in meters. This particular reach of river is on the Embarras River just south of town. The bend here is migrating outward (up in the image) at a particularly fast rate. I am trying to set up to study the three dimensional flow structure through this bend, and how specifically it correlates with the planform migration. Also, I will be developing a sediment mass balance for the reach (this one is especially interesting as for as a method approach, but I won’t bore you here with it). The nice thing about al of this is that I am working with Bruce and a guy named Jorge to produce a numerical flow model which simulates what the water should be doing in the reach. I’ll be able to compare what I measure to that model to help put the whole picture together. All in all some pretty intense scientific research.

In addition to all that, I have been helping my collueges collect data for their dissertations, and crunching data for Bruce to put in a presentation he is making in Italy in a couple of weeks. The nice thing about all the work is that I am set to write and co-author a book chapter, and two scholarly articles on my work. Muy Bueno! All in all it has been a fabulous fist year here, I achieved more than I thought possible, somehow kept my head above water, and earned the respect and trust of my peers and advisor.

And now, a random smattering of pictures for over the time void matrix style ala Nyet (specific descriptions follow in (row,column) format:

(1,2)- The USGS boat we took out the the Wabash and White Rivers confluence to do shear layer work in.

(1,3)- Some of said shear layer work (the shear layer is the mixing interface where the waters of the two rivers meet).

(2,1)- One of the ADV probes I’ll be using this summer in the field

(2,2)- Looking at a cross section of sand dunes from a huge (bigger than the Amazon) river from the Pennsylvanian Era (~300 million years ago).

(2,3)- Lovely sailor waxing poetic about being patriotic on the USS Constitution. Do you think he planned the picture op? Yes, yes you do…

And finally, a couple of vids I took in Boston. One of a street performer in Quincy Market, the other of the view from the water taxi back from the USS Constitution.

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4 responses to “Non-glorious post number 100

  1. I love you!!! This is so awesome!!! And I’m so proud of Jordan I could just bust!
    Oh, and don’t be too hard on her about the biking… it’s not easy to bike in heels and a nice dress or suit..especially for the ladies. She’s fine just riding the bus as a branch manager type dudette!
    Love the video selection.. that fellow is pretty impressive in the second one. Neat stuff… neat stuff.
    Soooo glad to see a new blog, even if it was not what you wanted to put up for no. 100, I still think it’s a keeper. And I am especially delighted to know that the two of you are “alive” and well!!
    Again… I love you!!!!!

  2. Hey Frank! Welcome back to the interwebs!!!

    Congrats on a highly productive first year. We thought of you quite a bit on our recent hike to a spring up in the mountains. I fully realize that associating you with all things river is akin to people telling Beck they thought of her when they saw a dog, but hey, that’s just the kind of limited in scope people we are.

    (Actually, it wasn’t just that it was a river; it was a river with some crazy flow patterns and rapids. So this was maybe a little more apropos than, say, seeing the Mississippi).

    Anyways, good work, and keep up the posting!

  3. Boy, I bet them strawberries are wonderful! Oh, and my picture is still prettier than Nyet’s… lol.

  4. Frank, you have “Teacher” stamped all over your blog. It’s a rare and special person who enjoys sharing the details of his work, hoping to educate those of us who just saw muddy water before knowing you. I’ve always been a Mark Twain/Mississippi River enthusiast, but you add another dimension to my appreciation.

    I hope we can see some of the sites where you’ve been working when we visit. I am awed by how much you’ve accomplished in this one year. You and U of I are a winning match.

    Happy pre-birthday, River Man!

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