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Sea level rise

Greenland loses more ice than assumed

New GPS measurements in Science Advances study show that ice loss needs to be revised upwards

[22. September 2016] 

The mass loss from the Greenland ice sheet is bigger than previously estimated. This is the result of a study by international scientists to be published in Science Advances. The work shows that up to now the so-called glacial isostatic adjustment, i.e., the uplift of the bedrock, was not correctly taken into account when measuring the glaciers’ mass balance with data from GRACE satellite observations.

Climate change

Tropical coral reefs lose two thirds of their zooplankton through ocean acidification

Dramatic decline has serious consequences for coral reefs

A healthy coral reef, not affected by ocean acidification. Milne Bay Province, Papua Neuguinea
[19. September 2016] 

Tropical coral reefs lose up to two thirds of their zooplankton through ocean acidification. This is the conclusion reached by a German-Australian research team that examined two reefs with so-called carbon dioxide seeps off the coast of Papua New Guinea. At these locations volcanic carbon dioxide escapes from the seabed, lowering the water's acidity to a level, which scientists predict for the future of the oceans. The researchers believe that the decline in zooplankton is due to the loss of suitable hiding places. It results from the...

Arctic Ocean

Open waters around the North Pole: Arctic sea ice in retreat

Arctic sea-ice cover melts down to an area of 4.14 million sq. km., statistically tied at second lowest in the satellite record with the 2007 minimum

Sea-ice measurements north of Greenland in summer 2016: On-board the AWI polar research aircraft scientists start a winch to lower the torpedo-shaped measuring device EM-BIRD, which is attached to a cable rope.
[13. September 2016] 

This September, the Arctic sea ice extent has shrunk to 4.1 million square kilometres (sq km)-the second lowest in the history of satellite measurements. It is exceeded only by the all-time record low of 3.4 million sq km in 2012. "Once again, a massive loss of sea ice in the Arctic," says Prof. Lars Kaleschke from Universität Hamburg's Center for Earth System Research and Sustainability (CEN). His colleague Prof. Christian Haas from the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) confirms: "The trend continues." Currently, the...

Dealing with Climate Change Impacts

The Potsdam Summer School starts with young talents from all over the world

Melting ice in Potter Cove, Antarctica: The Potsdam Summer School will focus on long-term climate change impacts and the challenge of dealing with them.
[29. August 2016] 

How to avoid the unmanageable and manage the unavoidable will be the focus of the Potsdam Summer School from September 5-14, bringing together more than 40 early-career scientists and young professionals from all around the globe.


25 years of the Arctic Station in Svalbard

The opening of the German Koldewey Station in Ny Ålesund, Svalbard on 10 August 1991

The Blue House in Ny-Ålesund: 25 years ago, the German Arctic Station in Svalbard was officially opened.
[10. August 2016] 

25 years ago, the German Arctic Station in Svalbard was officially opened by the former directors of the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Prof. Gotthilf Hempel and Dr Rainer Paulenz, as well as the BMBF State Secretary, Mr. Bernd Neumann.