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Still Waters

German icebreaker begins yr-long Arctic drift

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Still Waters

German Research Vessel Polarstern has found a location to begin its year-long drift in Arctic sea-ice.

The ship, which will head the North Pole's biggest scientific expedition, will settle next to a thick ice floe on the Siberian side of the ocean basin.

The precise location is 85 degrees north and 137 degrees east.

Hundreds of investigators will use it as a base from which to probe the impacts of climate change at the top of the world.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-49941340

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Still Waters

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Largest Arctic Expedition Ever Comes to a Close

This past Monday, the German reseach vessel Polarstern came back into port after the largest Arctic science expedition ever, reports Henry Fountain for the New York Times.

Polarstern spent more than a year in the frozen north with its engines switched off, drifting with the ice floe across the Arctic as its crew collected more than 150 terabytes of data and 1,000 ice samples, reports Agence France-Presse (AFP).

All those samples and data will take more than two years to completely analyze, but Markus Rex, the expedition leader, tells AFP the team’s initial assessment of the Arctic environment is grim.

"We witnessed how the Arctic Ocean is dying," Rex tells AFP. "We saw this process right outside our windows, or when we walked on the brittle ice."

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/largest-arctic-expedition-ever-comes-close-180976061/

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