In the study of the homogeneous layer in the ocean, Rossby1 found it desirable to have an instrument which would provide a continuous record of temperature against pressure in the surface layers of the ocean. A preliminary instrument named an "oceanograph" was constructed and used during the summer of 1934. The manifold uses to which such an instrument could be put presaged a widespread employment of the apparatus. This, however, did not come about because of certain inherent difficulties in Rossby's design. The record was made on a large smoked foil, and thus entailed the attachment of multiplying linkages to the actuating elements for pressure and temperature. Such multiplying linkages are uncertain in action in sea water, and, furthermore, the size of the instrument to accommodate them must necessarily be fairly great. At Prof. Rossby's suggestion, the author attempted to modify the oceanograph so that it would be more suitable for routine use. The modifications were made with the following aims in view:....
Spilhaus, Athelstan F.. 1938. "A bathythermograph." Journal of Marine Research 1, (2). https://elischolar.library.yale.edu/journal_of_marine_research/522