An outreach day

20 May 2014

An outreach day

Outreach to 8th graders in Porto via video from the farm house. Fortuna, Zé, João Pereira and Lara answering questions from the inquisitive.
Outreach to 8th graders in Porto via video from the farm house..
Marina on the other end with the kids as seen on the video link.
8th graders in Porto talking to researchers at the farm house.
Lara responding to questions and taking cues from the others at the farm house.
João Pereira shows off the tags he and Renato built.
Showing the Xplorer AUV to 8th graders in Porto.
Having an interesting time with the curious kids.
João Pereira during the interaction.
Zé interacting with the 8th graders.
Wrap up time after a full hour of interaction.
Back at work, João Pereira pulling together the parts of a simple (yet robust) drifter to get ground truth on surface currents.
Doing what was needed; soldering for the drifter.

Tuesday 20th the weather was no better. With 10-15 knot winds at the farm, going out to sea where it would be worse, was out of the question. So there we were, stranded once again, with neither the AUV nor the UAV teams were able to operate, due to the strong wind and rough sea conditions.    


Not all was lost; in the afternoon we had scheduled a video call with the 8th graders in Vila do Conde in the Porto area. Marina had planned to go over and set up the connection with Filipe (who used to study in this same school years earlier). And trooped in they did for their science class for which this experiment was the focus over the next couple of weeks. Despite their initial shyness, soon enough they were asking questions. And they had a surprise for us: they had a sunfish to dissect, caught locally and donated to the school by one of the student's parents many of whom were fishermen! This was news to us that these kids had been paying attention and clearly talking to their parents. All of us at the farm house were thrilled. The interaction on our side was with Lara, Zé Pinto, João Pereira and Fortuna to talk about the various aspects of the experiment. Given the attention the students gave, Lara did most of the talking over this lively exchange as the video and pictures in this blog entry attest. But the others here at the farm house also had a good time. No doubt we've had some impact on these kids and hopefully some of them will be motivated to become scientists and engineers.


At the farm house meanwhile, our entrepreneurial team continued to focus on building the (very) low cost drifters. That and monitoring the WaveGlider and seeing what kinds of data were coming thru took most of the day, not to mention the trek to Tavira for meals. The hope continued that weather and the situation would change for the better. But it only got colder into the evening.