Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

RV Polarstern on its way into the Antarctic

16.10.2009
Journey through the polar South Pacific up to New Zealand

Research vessel Polarstern will start its journey October 16th from Bremerhaven to its 26th expedition into Antarctica. The expedition consists of four legs and leads Polarstern, operated by the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association, at first to Punta Arenas.

Researchers from the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at Kiel University (IFM-GEOMAR), from the Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research (IfT) Leipzig, from GKSS Research Centre Geesthacht and from the Alfred Wegner Institute will further develop the system OCEANET during the first and last leg which is meant to experimentally collect data on mass and energy exchange between the ocean and atmosphere. The aim is to autonomously measure important environmental parameters onboard available cargo- and research vessels.

Mainly marine geologists will come aboard in Chile at the end of November to cross the polar South Pacific on Polarstern for the first time ever. 43 researchers and technicians around cruise leader Dr. Rainer Gersonde from the Alfred Wegener Institute want to take marine geological samples at 40 sites to collect data on the last million years of climate history by means of deep sea deposits. The analysis happens within the framework of national and international projects. The researchers want to determine the role of the polar South Pacific on the development of global climatic processes. This area of bad weather has so far rarely been investigated. As a formation site of deep and intermediate water masses it transports nutrients and cold water into the northern hemisphere and influences the climate of the earth. It is a key region for investigations on the stability of the West Antarctic ice shield in the course of past glacial and interglacial periods because the polar South Pacific borders in the South on the West Antarctic ice masses. This ice shield is considered unstable under warm climate conditions; its melting could cause a rise of the global sea level from three to five metres. Next to taking probes for climate and sea level related questions, the only known impact area in the ocean of an asteroid one kilometre big is investigated. The geoscientific work includes seismic profiles in order to make a proposal for a deep sea drilling location in the framework of the international "Integrated Ocean Drilling Program" (IODP). The Antarctic climate and glaciation history of the last 40 million years is meant to be documented by means of this drilling.

After two months, the second leg of the journey will end in Wellington, where the German embassy will give a welcome on the occasion of Polarstern's first running into port in New Zealand. The third leg of the journey will begin at the end of January which will lead back to Chile on a more southerly route than the one before. Polarstern will enter port in Punta Arenas again at the start of April 2010. Then it will make its way back to Bremerhaven where it is expected May 17th 2010.

The Alfred Wegener Institute carries out research in the Arctic and Antarctic as well as in the high and mid latitude oceans. The institute coordinates German polar research and provides international science with important infrastructure, e.g. the research icebreaker Polarstern and research stations in the Arctic and Antarctic. The Alfred Wegener Institute is one of 16 research centres within the Helmholtz Association, Germany's largest scientific organization.

Margarete Pauls | idw
Further information:
http://www.awi.de/

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Modeling magma to find copper
13.01.2017 | Université de Genève

nachricht What makes erionite carcinogenic?
13.01.2017 | Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>