Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Worldwide research network needed to really understand what is changing in the Arctic

20.02.2007
An Ohio State University geologist today outlined a new plan to oceanographers that would consolidate much of the world's studies on the Arctic region into a global observation network.

“This is basically a plan to better understand how the Arctic is changing, but doing it in a new systematic, international and ‘pan-Arctic' way,” explained Berry Lyons, professor in the School of Earth Sciences and director of the Byrd Polar Research Center at Ohio State University.

Lyons chaired a 18-member National Academy of Sciences committee that last year that submitted a report, “Toward an Integrated Arctic Observing Network,” outlining their proposal.

“The Arctic is much more than just the oceans there. It is the land, the peoples, the atmospheric and biological components that constantly interact with one another at the top of the world,” he said.

“It also includes, perhaps, the most understudied of the world's oceans, partly because of the logistics it requires to work there and the ice cover that blankets it for much of the year.”

Lyons said that the idea of linking together research on the land, the ocean, the atmosphere and the human dimensions and examining it all as a system is the key goal of establishing an Arctic Observing Network (AON).

“We're trying to understand how the Arctic system is responding, not just to climate change – although that is a major reason – but also to environmental changes in general,” he said.

The fact that most of the Arctic research that has been done to date has been segregated by academic discipline has limited the kind of cooperation that an AON would offer, Lyons said.

“This is an opportunity to get people from different scientific disciplines together and to start thinking about the Arctic as a larger, interconnected system. That's the new part of this.”

The committee envisioned a computerized portal through which scholars could access a wealth of data across many scientific fields and from many countries, all housed and managed in a way that would foster collaborations and new insights.

Lyons points to some large data sets that are readily at hand -- information gained from a Long-Range Ecological Research (LTER) sites at Bonanza Creek and Toolik Lake, Alaska; from research at the Summit of Greenland's ice cap, and from the Abisko Scientific Research Station in Sweden, as examples. AON would build from these already existing networks and observational platforms, he said.

“People have been collecting data at these locations for a long time and they could add immensely to the AON,” he said. “We know that the Arctic is changing dramatically but there are important things that we just don't know.

“A lot of the gauging stations on rivers in the Arctic, particularly in the former Soviet Union, have been taken down. We don't know what is going on environmentally in great detail in Siberia. And we don't know what impacts these changes might be having on indigenous people in this region.

“Because of the small number of operating buoys, we know little about the change of water throughout the Arctic,” he said. “There are certain measurements that aren't being made at all that are really, really important.”

The committee's report was “a roadmap to really learn how the Arctic is changing. We need to do this in a much more organized manner than is being done right now,” he said.

Lyons also said that aside from the current AON activity in the U.S. through the National Science Foundation, there is also international movement underway on the Sustained Arctic Observing Network (SAON) through the Arctic Council.

Berry Lyons | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osu.edu

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Listening in: Acoustic monitoring devices detect illegal hunting and logging
14.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.

nachricht How fires are changing the tundra’s face
12.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>