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Press release

Is the ice in the Arctic Ocean getting thinner and thinner? Research aircraft Polar 5 measures thickness of sea ice north of Greenland

[20. August 2010] 

The extent of the sea ice in the Arctic will reach its annual minimum in September. Forecasts indicate that it will not be as low as in 2007, the year of the smallest area covered by sea ice since satellites started recording such data. Nevertheless, sea ice physicists at the Alfred Wegener Institute are concerned about the long-term equilibrium in the Arctic Ocean. They have indications that the mass of sea ice is dwindling because its thickness is declining.Around a third to half of the freshwater export from the Arctic Ocean takes place in this way – a major drive factor in the global ocean current system.


Press release

NEEM Deep Ice Core Drilling Project in Greenland Reaches Bedrock – Conclusions on Climate Conditions and Sea Level Rise in Geological Past Expected

[30. July 2010] 

Bedrock has been reached Tuesday July 27 2010 at the deep ice core drilling site NEEM on the Greenland Ice Sheet at the depth 2537.36 m. The Eemian is the last interglacial period, when climate was warmer than today, and sea level 5 meters higher, and is our best analogue for future climate. Scientists from 14 nations participated in NEEM, the most international ice core effort to date. After five years of work, ice from the warm interglacial Eemian period, 130.000 to 115.000 years before present and even older ice has been recovered. The last 2 m of ice above the bedrock contains rocks and other material that has not seen sunlight for hundreds of thousands of years.


Press release

Highlight of the Polarstern expedition: Autonomous Underwater Vehicle of the Alfred Wegener Institute dives under the Arctic ice for the first time

[26. July 2010] 

The Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association for the first time sent its Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) on an under-ice mission at about 79° North.


Press release

30 years of Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research - Ice, sea and climate – research to understand our Earth better

[14. July 2010] 

The Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association will be thirty years old on 15 July. Through its innovative scientific and excellent research infrastructure the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) has developed into one of the world’s leading internationally recognised centres for climate research on both polar regions and the oceans.


Press release

Higher wetland methane emissions caused by climate warming 40,000 years ago

[24. June 2010] 

40,000 years ago rapid warming led to an increase in methane concentration. The culprit for this increase has now been identified. Mainly wetlands in high northern lati-tudes caused the methane increase, as discovered by a research team from the University of Bern and the German Alfred Wegener Institute.


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