“During our studies concerning the transport and transformation of biogenically produced organic compounds in seawater, it became apparent that a more efficient method of collecting water samples was needed.” Thus began a scintillating
article I wrote for Limnology & Oceanography when I worked for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The sampler was pretty cool. Its best feature was that it could be lowered underneath the organically rich (and therefore highly contaminant) surface layer to be opened and cocked before lowering miles down to the sampling depth. Actually, I think the cross-sectional diagram I did is the best.
I used the sampler as the answer to a question I got from a Wall Street recuriter when I was looking for a job out of college: “Give me an example of how you have solved a difficult problem.” Hah! No one else will have solved a complicated problem in heavy equipment sampling when you’re faced with nasty surface goop leaching off a dizzingly moving platform thousands of miles at sea! (so I thought). She just looked at me rather puzzled.