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Alfred Wegener Institute Now Also Represented in Lower Saxony

With the Helmholtz Institute for Functional Marine Biodiversity at the University of Oldenburg, the AWI expands its circle of funders

HIFMB Oldenburg
[17. February 2021] 

As of 1 January 2021, Lower Saxony is part of the federal and state financing for the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). The inclusion of the Helmholtz Institute for Functional Marine Biodiversity, co-founded with the University of Oldenburg in 2017, means that there are now AWI sites in four states.

Ocean Acoustics

The Marine Soundscape and Anthropogenic Noise

Time for international action

Weddell Seal
[04. February 2021] 

Due to construction work in the sea, shipping, and gas and oil extraction, the oceans are becoming increasingly louder. A comprehensive international study has now shown that this noise affects the behaviour of far more animal species than previously assumed. The researchers call for us to listen closely to the ocean and to finally regulate noise worldwide.


The Arctic Ocean was covered by a shelf ice and filled with freshwater

Scientists from Alfred Wegener Institute: “We need to have a fresh look at the role of the Arctic Ocean.”

[03. February 2021] 

The Arctic Ocean was covered by up to 900 m thick shelf ice and was filled entirely with freshwater at least twice in the last 150,000 years. This surprising finding, reported in the latest issue of the journal Nature, is the result of long-term research by scientists from the Alfred Wegener Institute and the MARUM.

Polarstern Expedition

Climate Research in the Southern Ocean

Polarstern can undertake expeditions despite the pandemic – researchers will gather important long-term data for climate forecasts

[Translate to English:] Polarstern-Winterexperiment
[28. January 2021] 

The Alfred Wegener Institute has risen to the challenge of undertaking an expedition to the Weddell Sea in the Antarctic under pandemic conditions. Consequently, the participants in this year’s first Polarstern expedition will be able to resume their long-term measurements in the Southern Ocean, gathering data that forms the basis for our understanding of polar processes and for urgently needed climate forecasts.

Climate History

Wandering Icebergs

Icebergs drifted in some cases close to the southern tip of Africa.

Drill core section
[14. January 2021] 

An international team led by Cardiff University and which included the AWI has now revealed how it was possible that during glacial periods, icebergs from Antarctica drifted much further north than they do today.