For a period of three years, these research groups will each receive funding of up to 130,000 EUR per year from the Helmholtz Association's Initiative and Networking Fund and an equal amount from RSF.
"In many research fields, Russia is an important partner for us," says Otmar D. Wiestler, President of the Helmholtz Association. "The energy supply of the future and climate change are two of them. Our new funding instrument is therefore a valuable basis for real progress in these fields". There were a total of twelve applications in the second round of calls for proposals. "Among them were numerous excellent projects," Wiestler continues. "I am very pleased that we were able to select six innovative ones."
The "Helmholtz-RSF Joint Research Groups" are based on a partnership between the Helmholtz Association and the Russian Science Foundation. One focus of this programme is the promotion of young scientists in both countries. Scientists from a Helmholtz centre as well as Russian partners are involved in each selected research project.
One of the selected projects includes the participation of the Alfred Wegener Institute, focussing on the Arctic. The climate in the Arctic is subject to faster changes than the global climate. Due to the shrinking sea-ice cover, especially in summer, the weather in the Arctic changes on the one hand, and on the other hand, the large circulation systems in the mid-latitudes are also affected. Extreme weather and climate events such as cold spells, droughts or heat waves may occur more frequently. Previous climate models have great deficits in reproducing the observed atmospheric circulation and sea-ice development in the Arctic, among other things because they have difficulties in simulating the processes that determine the interactions between atmosphere, ice and ocean.
The project ("The linkage between polar air-sea ice-ocean interaction, Arctic climate change and Northern hemisphere weather and climate extremes - POLEX") aims to develop a new suite of parametrisations for the representation of physical processes between atmosphere, ice and ocean, especially for polar conditions. Subsequently, the influence of the new parametrisations on changes in Arctic weather and climate, Arctic sea ice and atmospheric circulation in mid-latitudes will be investigated and quantified.