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January update

25 January 2021

Antarctic Science Platform January Update

The Tangaroa is currently undertaking its six-week Antarctic voyage. The Antarctic Science Platform is funding part of the voyage which looks at physical oceanography and phytoplankton, including how iron is used by plankton.

One of the Platform funded research projects being carried out onboard is hydrographic timeseries mooring work. This includes the recovery and redeployment of hydrographic moorings by Cape Adare, designed to capture cold salty water from the polynya that is draining off the continental shelf and flowing north along the seabed. The first three moorings were recovered off Cape Adare last week. New moorings are also being deployed further South across the head of a submarine trough, complimenting an Italian mooring already in the water. Read more here

Ocean Moorings CS

The Tangaroa is due to return to Wellington on February the 17th keep up with the latest news from the voyage here

Successful traverse team returns

The traverse team have returned to Scott Base after a successful 2500km trip out to the Kamb Ice Stream and Siple Dome. The team got back to base on the 12th of January, nearly a week ahead of schedule. The main objective of the trip was to pre-stage critical equipment, drill rods and fuel at planned locations of scientific interest ahead of the next two upcoming summer seasons. While collecting equipment from last season’s drill location, the team also serviced existing Snow Web installations on site. The homebound journey enabled the further ability to conduct additional aPRES measurements as well as download data from installations at HWD2. This year the team lived in the big green box, also known as NZ23. A bespoke living module to help improve the safety and wellbeing of the crew.

Traverse pic

Platform biologists contribute to significant international paper

A team of 25 international experts have come together to produce an article summarizing the impact of environmental change on biological processes in Antarctica over the past decade. The article called Antarctic Ecosystems in Transition – life between stresses and opportunities has just been published in Biological Reviews. The experts met in Portugal in 2019 and synthesized hundreds of individual results from the Antarctic over the past 10 years, and have published 10 main messages in the article. The article highlights Antarctic ecosystems on land and in the ocean are under specific environmental stress and are subject to change in various forms and intensity. Platform researchers Vonda Cummings and Ian Hawes contributed to the article.