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Press release

Into the ice – RV Polarstern opens the arctic season by setting course for Spitsbergen

[18. May 2015] 

On Tuesday, 19 May 2015 the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its home port in Bremerhaven, setting a course for the Arctic. Led by Dr Ilka Peeken from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), a team of 53 researchers from 11 countries will investigate the effects of climate change in the Arctic, from the surface ice floes down to the seafloor.


Press release

Gradual but steady thaw: an international team of researchers gains new insights into arctic permafrost

[09. April 2015] 

Permafrost in the Arctic and in subarctic regions will most likely continually release substantial quantities of greenhouse gases over the coming decades: that’s the verdict of an international research team, which recently compiled and analysed the latest permafrost studies. As such, they have determined that the recurring thesis that there will be a sudden and widespread release of billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide and methane is highly unlikely.


Press release

Blue blood on ice – How an Antarctic octopus survives the cold

[11. March 2015] 

An Antarctic octopus that lives in ice-cold water uses an unique strategy to transport oxygen in its blood, according to research published in Frontiers in Zoology. The study suggests that the octopus’s specialized blood pigments could help to make it more resilient to climate change than Antarctic fish and other species of octopus.


Press release

A question of light: Ocean acidification slows algae growth in the Southern Ocean

[24. February 2015] 

In a recent study, scientists at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), demonstrate for the first time that ocean acidification could have negative impacts on diatoms in the Southern Ocean. In laboratory tests they were able to observe that under changing light conditions, diatoms grow more slowly in acidic water. In so doing, Dr Clara Hoppe and her team have overturned the widely held assumption that sinking pH values would stimulate the growth of these unicellular algae.


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