Treasure hunting in Antarctica!

Yesterday the weather finally allowed the technicians from the Nowegian Polar Institute (NPI) to leave the research station Troll and fly out to go treasure hunting on the Fimbull ice shelf! Two years has gone by since they last visited the sites where NPI installed sub-ice shelf moorings more than ten years ago… and where we two years ago installed an “ApRES”. While the sub-ice shelf moorings measure the temperature and the currents in the water beneath the ice shelf, the APRES measures how fast the ice thins, and we can then calculate the basal melt rate. When combining the records we can hopefully learn a lot!

Like most Places in Antarctica, the snow that falls on the Fimbull iceshelf never melts away, so there was a few meters of snow to dig through in order to reach the instruments and to download the oh so precious data – a true treasure hunt!

Judging from the photos, the solar panel system that Helge Bryhni, a technician here at GFI, helped me design in order to power my APRES,  appear to have survived two Antarctic winters… and we are now eagerly waiting for the report on how they’ve performed… and to have a look at the new data!

More stories from the successful treasure hunt at the Fimbul ice shelf will appear at @oceanseaicenpi soon!

The Twinotter has landed at site M2, Fimbullisen. Our solar panels are sticking up from the snow! Photo: Sven Lidström, NPI
Lots of showels, lots of digging to be done… Photo: Sven Lidström, NPI
The yellow APRES Box was buried beneath a few meters of accumulated snow. Photo: Sven Lidström, NPI

 

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