The dark season has started, with students and researchers gathered both in Ny-Ålesund and on board RV Helmer Hanssen. While the researchers on board Helmer Hanssen are mainly focused on pelagic systems and organisms north of Svalbard, the students on the UNIS course AB334 are mainly occupied with using enabling technology for environmental monitoring and mapping in the dark. Some are also interested in bamboo…
Kunnskapshull in Aftenposten (12.01.2017)
A recent study on blue mussels from various regions in the Arctic have unravelled a very surprising discovery - there are many migrants from the Mediterranean on Svalbard! We used to think that the blue mussels on Svalbard was simply a northern extension of the Atlantic species Mytilus edulis, but new research has demonstrated that a considerable part of the gene pool on Svalbard comes directly from the Mediterranean, more precisely the species Mytilus galloprovincialis. In a time when some countries are building walls to prevent immigration from the south, Svalbard is an example of a community that receives immigrants on a daily basis, and where the immigrants are settling down without any problems. Perhaps it is true what they say about the coming wall between USA and Mexico - it defines where the borderline to stupid is: Canada and Mexico! Read the paper here. News (in Norwegian) in Forskning.no and Svalbardposten.
This year’s January campaign on Svalbard was our sixth consecutive year of polar night research. Since our first expedition to Ny-Ålesund in 2010, we have spent large parts of January on Svalbard every year since 2012 - the first years we were mainly based on the RV Helmer Hanssen, whereas from 2014 our main activity have been divided between Ny-Ålesund and onboard Helmer Hanssen. So also this year, when Bodil Bluhm lead the group onboard HH and Jørgen / Geir were in charge of the campaign in Ny-Ålesund - the former in association with the UiT course BIO-8510 and the latter with UNIS course AB334. And despite a constant and intense focus on the polar night from a very high number of students and researchers during the last eight years, there are still immense gaps in knowledge that needs to be filled. And unexpected discoveries seems to line up, just waiting to be brought out of the darkness and into the public spotlight - so also this year:
Commentary on how the research within the Arctic ABC programme is relevant in an international context of diplomatic negotiations on regulations of resources in the Arctic Ocean. Written by Njord Wegge in cooperation with Max Geoffroy and Jørgen Berge.
Published online at Sustainable Security.
Once again we are heading towards winter and polar night, with new and exciting campaigns planned both at UNIS and UiT. UNIS will host its “Polar night biology and underwater robotics” course in Ny-Ålesund, and at UiT we plan a Arctic ABC cruise with Helmer Hanssen during the first part of January. Building up to these events, new results from “the dark side" were recently published in Nature Scientific Reports and Science.
The FAABulous project (led by Eva Leu, Akvaplan-niva, funded by NRC 2015-2020) had its annual meeting 12.-14.10.2016. 19 participants gathered in a hotel outside Oslo to update each other on the past year's data collection, experimental and modeling activities, and started discussing the field work for 2017. The FAABulous project is closely connected with the ARCTOS network, and in particular in overcoming this year's challenges with field sampling under ice-free conditions (that was not planned), we profited greatly from the help, support and the willingness to improvise amongst our friends and colleagues. Thanks!
Arctic ABC(D) had their project meeting in Tromsø 10-12 October 2016. As many as 26 of us participated in lively discussion and presentations at Sydspissen Hotel. Representatives from the technology, biology, modelling and end-user forum groups provided all with updates on progress made. Overviews of the upcoming 2017 and later field campaigns laid the foundation for subsequent in-depth discussions of the many details to be considered for these field campaigns. These will include testing the prototype POPE buoys in Kongsfjorden in January 2017, conducting studies related to light and life cycle strategies in January on RV Helmer Hanssen, testing the POPE buoys for the first time in sea ice in van Mijenfjorden in March-April 2017, and preparing for the first tests in pack-ice in May-June north of Svalbard. Social evenings coloured by spectacular northern lights provided for a relaxed atmosphere for further discussion.
, which opened in Tromso in January 2015, has now found a new temporary home in the Science museum in Trondheim. It is the same exhibition as the one from Tromso, except that it also contains a few new and more technology focuses elements. And it now has its very own music specially composed by Bias (Tobias Johnsen). Geir Johnsrn, Asgeir Sørensen and Jørgen Berge took part in the opening. Geir Johnsen and Asgeir Sørensen had a tour with NRK direct on radio right after the opening. The polar night exhibition
During the UNIS/Arctic ABC cruise in Svalbard in late August the moorings that were set out for the FAABulous project were retrieved. Unfortunately, one was lost – probably due to strong currents close to Akselsundet, but on the remaining ones, everything seems to have worked out as planned, and we are looking forward to deal with a unique dataset during the coming months. Great thanks to Daniel and Finlo (and everyone else involved in these operations).
Read more about the proceedings of this project here.
The Mare Incognitum family is glad to announce that Laura Hobbs, a former PhD student in the recently finished CircA project, has been named Postgraduate of the year! Dr. Hobbs has been a PhD student at the Mare Incognitum partner SAMS in Oban, Scotland, and receives this award by the University of the Highlands and Islands. She has been nominated by her former supervisor Dr. Finlo Cottier, who is also part of several Mare Incognitum teams. During her project, Laura focused on the mysterious activities of Arctic zooplankton during the polar night. For more infomation please have a look at the CircA project page and visit SAMS. You might also want to check out the excellent publication on the mysteries of zooplankton moonlight migration.
- The 2nd FAABulous cruise (KV Svalbard)
- Arctic ABC and Arctic ABC Development project meeting
- The alien from the deep
- New year = new polar night cruise
- The werewolves are back
- The Arctic Polar night seen from an Antarctic expert
- CLEOPATRA II - project came to an end
- BBC and the “dead fish”…
- Liv og lys i mulm og mørke / Life and light at the dead of night
- ArcticABC in the BBC news