Weekly Reports Polarstern

The Expedition PS10105 from Punta Arenas to Bremerghaven

Fig. 1.1: Planned track of Polarstern during PS105 from Punta Arenas via Las Palmas and Le Havre to Bremerhaven (Graphic: Rainer Knust)

The return voyage to Bremerhaven starts on March 21, 2017 in Punta Arenas, Chile, with stopovers in Las Palmas, Spain, on April 11, 2017 and Le Havre, France, on April 18, 2017. Polarstern will return to Bremerhaven on April 20, 2017.

During the cruise from Punta Arenas to Bremerhaven the universities of Göttingen and Frankfurt will conduct en route measurements in the fields of air chemistry and physics. Furthermore the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg will carry out en route measurements of particulate material in the atmosphere. Additionally the German Weather Service (Deutscher Wetterdienst/ DWD) will run a training program on board. In preparation for the renewal of the two shaft  generators, which will take place in autumn 2017, initial work will be conducted by an outside company on the trip from Punta Arenas to Le Havre.

During the trip from Las Palmas to Bremerhaven a training program in hydro acoustic measurements will take place. 16 students from Germany, Italy, Ireland and the People’s Republic of China will participate.

From Le Havre to Bremerhaven we will welcome 9 guests from the scientific committee of the German Federal Parliament as well as representatives from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Our guests will be informed about scientific working on and with the vessel and the education of students on board.

PS104 - Weekly Report No. 6 | 13 - 18 March 2017


[21. March 2017] 

In this last weekly report, I will give a short résumé of our exciting expedition. We left with great expectations for the Amundsen Sea 6 weeks ago with the MeBo drilling device and other scientific equipment on board to collect samples and data that will help us to decipher the history of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

PS104 - Weekly Report No. 5 | 6 - 12 March 2017

End of a successful Expedition

[13. March 2017] 

A world of gigantic icebergs made the scenery which Polarstern passed through on its track from Pine Island Bay to the western Amundsen Sea Embayment. The icebergs are so abundant here because of a bathymetric ridge that extends northwards from Bear Peninsula and onto which the icebergs are grounded and move only slightly at the peaks of high tide.

PS104 - Weekly Report No. 4 | 27 February - 5 March 2017

Interesting Discoveries

[06. March 2017] 

A week passed by that was full of alternating expectations and events. Sea ice got in the way, but such is life when working in polar environments. But there is always a Plan B, and this time we continued in the eastern part of the Amundsen Sea Embayment, where sea ice and weather conditions were more favourable.

PS104 - Weekly Report No. 3 | 20 - 26 February 2017

The MeBo drilling program and stations on land

[27. February 2017] 

An exciting week has passed with changing plans as becoming part of the daily routine. Why is it impossible to follow a many days’ long work program in this region? Our work is mainly focussed on the drilling program with the MeBo.

PS104 - Weekly Report No. 2 | 13 - 20 February 2017

The second week

[21. February 2017] 

A broad belt of thick pack ice normally blocks the northern entrance to the shelf of the Amundsen Sea Embayment. But we encountered an unusually small sea-ice cover as also observed by satellite data from around entire Antarctica this southern summer. With only an average 3/10 to 5/10 ice cover, Polarstern easily managed to pass this belt so that we soon arrived at our first station west of Thurston Island to sample marine sediments.