Hundreds of researchers will travel to the Northern polar cap of the Earth — drift on frozen in the ice of the German research vessel Polarstern
In 1893, Norwegian Explorer Fridtjof Nansen wanted to be the first man to reach the North pole: he allowed the sea ice to bind the wooden ship “FRAM” that dragged him on the polar cap of the planet migration ice. In the end, he was forced to leave the ship and go skiing hundreds of kilometers to the British base, writes BBC News.
Many years later, scientists still expect to go down this path in the “most ambitious to date research expedition to the Arctic” — the MOSAIC (Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the study of Arctic climate).
The project cost about 130 million euros. Polarstern on its way will support icebreakers from Sweden, China and Russia.
Within a year nearly 2,500-mile journey, a group of scientists with armed guards from the polar bears dispersed in the polar cap for studies that have never been conducted.
If the winter court is unable to break ice to get to the researchers, to provide them and to assist them will be planes and helicopters long-range.
Project Manager and expedition — Professor Markus Rex of the German Alfred Wegener Institute in Potsdam.
“We have no reliable climate projections for the Arctic, and the reason that we do not understand very well the processes taking place there because never could watch them all year round, and certainly not in winter when the ice is thickest there, and it is impossible to go on research ships,” he says.
Polarstern going camping in Tromso. From there he will go into the Russian zone of the Arctic. The introduction into the ice — at the point near 85 degrees North latitude and 130 degrees East longitude.
After drifting through the pole of the ship, the plan will be “squeezed out” of the ice between the North-Eastern Greenland and Svalbard in the FRAM Strait.
There is a danger that the ship will delay for Beaufort-Gere (clockwise in the Arctic): once there, it will be difficult to escape from the trap.
Scientists have six months to work in the conditions of polar night, when the temperature with the strongest winds drops to -45 degrees Celsius. The team on the ice needs to be constantly prepared to repel bears. People this will be night vision goggles: in time to notice danger.
No one will go outside the vessel, if on ice no armed guards.
Instrument weather stations will be installed around the pole at a distance of 50 km from each other.
Preparing for the Polarstern expedition (photo — EPA):