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Climate and weather prediction

Kick-off Meeting EU project APPLICATE

Scientists from 16 European institutions meet in Bremerhaven

[08. February 2017] 

From 8 to 9 February representatives from the 16 partner organisations taking part in the EU Horizon 2020-funded APPLICATE project are meeting in Bremerhaven, Germany. This Kick-off Meeting is the beginning of their collaborative efforts to improve climate and weather prediction for the Arctic and the mid-latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, as well as contributing to improved Arctic observations.

Arctic Ocean

Litter Levels in the Depths of the Arctic are On the Rise

Sea ice could be responsible for transporting plastic litter

[08. February 2017] 

The Arctic has a serious litter problem: in just ten years, the concentration of marine litter at a deep-sea station in the Arctic Ocean has risen 20-fold. This was recently reported in a study by researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI).

Rising sea level

Expedition to Antarctica’s Glaciers

Results expected to improve forecasts for the rising global sea level

[02. February 2017] 

How has the West Antarctic Ice Sheet changed in response to alternating warm and cold time periods? And what does it mean for the sea level – today and tomorrow? Pursuing answers to these key questions, 50 researchers on board the Alfred Wegener Institute’s research vessel Polarstern are going to depart from Punta Arenas (Chile) on 6 February 2017, bound for the Amundsen Sea – the region of the Antarctic currently characterised by the most massive and rapid loss of ice. In the course of the expedition, the seafloor drill rig...

Knocking on wood in the deep sea

Sunken logs form diverse and dynamic habitats

Biologists sank self-made food falls into the deep sea to enable them to study the organisms attracted by those morsels in great detail

Freshly deployed log in the Norwegian Sea.
[25. January 2017] 

The deep sea is a vast and seemingly uninhabitable place, except for some small oases of life. Sunken wood logs, so-called wood falls, can form such oases and provide for rich life for limited periods. A new study by researchers from the MPI Bremen takes a close look at the deep-sea organisms inhabiting wood falls and how they affect their surroundings. They show that sunken logs are highly dynamic ecosystems and play an important role for the diversity and distribution of bacteria and animals alike.

Ocean Acoustics

The Sound of the Ocean

Comprehensive long-term study on ambient sound in the Southern Ocean published

Zwergwale tauchen zwischen den Eisschollen auf, um zu atmen.
[12. January 2017] 

For nearly three years, AWI researchers used underwater microphones to monitor the Southern Ocean and listen to a “choir” of whales and seals. The sounds recorded offer new insights into the ocean’s natural soundscape, as well as the animals’ behaviour and distribution.