The Expedition ARK-XXIII/2
14 July 2008: Start of work in eastern Fram Strait
21 July 2008: Excellent scientific output in the AWI-HAUSGARTEN
28 July 2008: Successful end of the mooring work in heavy ice coverage
4 August 2008: Research in the polynya and search for the seismic stations
11 August 2008: The northernmost position and the final geodetic work
Expedition summary and itinerary
The scientific projects of the cruise are part of the IPY 2007/2008 programme. The research areas during the cruise leg ARK-XXIII/2 are the northern Nordic Seas. The main working sites are the Fram Strait which is located between Svalbard and Greenland and the Northeast Water Polynya at the northeastern tip of Greenland.
The oceanographic programme will be performed at the beginning of the cruise. The aim is to quantify the interannual to decadal variation of volume, heat and salt fluxes through Fram Strait. Moorings will be recovered and redeployed. The biological studies in the so-called AWI ‘Hausgarten’ focus on changes of the polar benthic deep-sea ecosystem. Moorings will be exchanged and optical systems as well as net sampling, trawls and sediment coring are applied for recording the bottom fauna assemblages.
After completion of the mooring work, Polarstern will steam northward to deploy sensors for geodetic and seismic studies on Greenland or on ice floes, respectively. Changes of the horizontal and vertical components of deformation of Greenland’s earth crust will be recorded as well as micro-earthquakes.
Hydrographic, chemical and biological studies will be performed in the Northeast Water Polynya off Greenland. To study the vertical and horizontal variability of mesoplankton a newly developed towed optical system will be used. The chemical studies focus on the production of methane and dimethylsulfide (DMS), both important gases in the atmosphere. The determination of nutrients will allow us to determine the proportion of Pacific water, which flows from the Bering Strait through the Arctic Ocean and exists on the Greenland Shelf into the Atlantic Ocean.
During the entire leg observations and counting of sea birds and mammals will be continued. After finishing the polynya studies the seismic and geodetic sensors will be recovered
4 July 2008: Departure from Longyearbyen (Svalbard)
5 July 2008: Start station work
10 August 2008: Arrival at Reykjavik (Iceland)