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ICE FLOE

Programmed Multikopter Flies Autonomously Through Arctic

Alfred Wegener Institute programmed a Multikopter

  How do you get an aircraft in the far reaches of the Arctic Ocean to the goal, if the compass does not provide reliable location data? Engineers aboard the research icebreaker Polarstern of the Alfred Wegener Institute programmed a Multikopter so that he can navigate near the North Pole, despite declination of the Earth's magnetic field. A first successful test flight together with autonomous landing celebrated scientists recently on an ice floe. "The autonomous navigation is in high latitudes is a major challenge," says Sascha Lehmenhecker, engineer at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, the Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). "Navigation is by means of magnetic sensors. However, the field lines of the Earth's magnetic field show in pole near almost perpendicular to the ground, so that a precise navigation is difficult. For this reason, commercial Multikopter controls for inserts are unsuitable in polar regions, "said the engineer. Together with the two graduate students Michael straw Meier and Tobias Mikschl of the University of Würzburg developed Lehmenhecker the control of so-called Multikopter on. This is driven by a number of propellers, about half a meter large aircraft to be sold in the future on ice and after several hours of there own to fly back to a research ship. The special task: Both the ice floe and the ship move


Drifting Arctic Tankship Gets Icebreakers Escort

Tanker Nordvik: Photo courtesy of Khatanga Sea Trade Port

The “Nordvik”, which had been drifting in remote Arctic waters following a collision with an ice floe, is now being accompanied by icebreakers to its home port, reports the 'Barents Observer'. Citing the Russian Sea and River Transport Agency, Barents Obsever says that a total of 1800 litres of diesel oil was transferred from the “Nordvik” into the tanker “Boris Vilkitsky”. The two vessels are now accompanied by two nuclear-powered icebreakers


Tanker Grounding Update

On behalf of the Unified Command, the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) issued a Situation Report stating that the tanker Seabulk Pride grounded in Cook Inlet near Nikiski. No pollution was reported initially. The tanker was apparently pushed aground by an ice floe. A Second Situation Report states that several tugs and a response barge are being mobilized. A small amount of oil was spilled when the tanker was pushed away from its mooring by the ice


Nichols Brothers Resumes Work

Nichols Brothers Boat Builders returned to work after the company laid off 185 employees Nov. 2. Shortly thereafter, the company filed for bankruptcy protection, a move necessitated by a big lawsuit filed by a disgruntled customer. While the bankruptcy issues are far from settled, Nichols Brothers was allowed to negotiate with individual boat owners to see that their projects, shut down on Nov. 2, could be completed.


This Day in Coast Guard History – Jan. 25

1799- Having existed essentially nameless for 8-1/2 years, Alexander Hamilton's "system of cutters" was referred to in legislation as "Revenue Cutters."  Some decades later, the name evolved to Revenue Cutter Service and Revenue Marine. 1940- The ocean station program was formally established on 25 January 1940 under orders from President Franklin Roosevelt.  The Coast Guard, in cooperation with the U. S


This Day in U.S. Coast Guard History – January 25

1799- Having existed essentially nameless for 8-1/2 years, Alexander Hamilton's "system of cutters" was referred to in legislation as "Revenue Cutters."  Some decades later, the name evolved to Revenue Cutter Service and Revenue Marine. 1940- The ocean station program was formally established on 25 January 1940 under orders from President Franklin Roosevelt.  The Coast Guard, in cooperation with the U. S


Submarine Force Participates in Ice Exercise 2007

Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Alexandria (SSN 757) is submerged after surfacing through two feet of ice during ICEX-07, a U.S. Navy and Royal Navy exercise conducted on and under a drifting ice floe about 180 nautical miles off the north coast of Alaska. U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Shawn P. EklundCommander, Submarine Force has announced the participation of USS Alexandria (SSN 757), home ported in Groton, Conn., in a joint U.S


GAO: Limited Commercial Arctic Development Foreseen

Arctic Tow: File photo

Decreasing seasonal sea ice has opened up Arctic waters for longer periods with resulting potential economic opportunities in commercial shipping, cruises, commercial fishing, oil, and mining. In light of the importance of U.S. efforts to effectively manage Arctic issues, GAO was asked to examine U.S. actions related to developing and investing in Arctic maritime infrastructure, which it did without making any recommendations.


Huge Waves Measured for First Time in Arctic Ocean

J. Thomson / University of Washington

As the climate warms and sea ice retreats, the North is changing. An ice-covered expanse now has a season of increasingly open water which is predicted to extend across the whole Arctic Ocean before the middle of this century. Storms thus have the potential to create Arctic swell – huge waves that could add a new and unpredictable element to the region. A University of Washington researcher made the first study of waves in the middle of the Arctic Ocean


Ice Free Arctic?

Photo Credits: NASA/Kate Ramsayer

 Arctic melting slowed enough in midsummer that scientists don't expect this year's sea ice minimum to set a new record. This year’s melt season in the Arctic Ocean and surrounding seas started with a bang, with a record low maximum extent in March and relatively rapid ice loss through May.    The melt slowed down in June, however, making it highly unlikely that this year’s summertime sea ice minimum extent will set a new record.  


Incentivizing Spill Response Innovation

(Photo: MPC)

Researchers tackle the tough problems despite a lack of funding and official incentives to move forward. Progress, in particular for Arctic spill response equipment and techniques, is being made.   Even in the messy but now seemingly distant wake of such environmental disasters such as the


Lloyd's Register Renews Ecospeed Certificate for Ice Ships

“Only a few types of coatings are capable of providing this protection,” says Subsea Industries CEO Boud Van Rompay (Photo: Subsea Industries)

Classification society Lloyd’s Register has renewed its certification of the Ecospeed hard coating as an approved abrasion resistant hull protection system for vessels operating in Polar waters. Upon receiving the new Certificate, Subsea Industries’ CEO Boud Van Rompay said:


Will Naval Operations Heat up in the Arctic?

U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams

As diminishing sea ice in the Arctic Ocean expands navigable waters, scientists sponsored by the Office of Naval Research have traveled to the region to study the changing environment and provide new tools to help the U.S. Navy operate in a once-inaccessible area.  


New Satellite Technology Boosts Glacier Research

Tandem L is the name of a new satellite radar system Photo Alfred Wegener Institute

Researchers are developing a unique radar, which could allow a view of Earth's ice sheets Bremerhaven, November 4, 2016. Scientists from the Alfred Wegener Institute are developing with experts from the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) a new satellite measurement method for the observation from


Crystal Charters Escort Vessel for Arctic Cruise

RRS Ernest Shackleton (Photo: Crystal Cruises)

When cruise liner Crystal Serenity sets off on its 32-day expedition voyage through the Northwest Passage from Anchorage to New York August 16, she will be escorted by the RRS Ernest Shackleton.   Crystal Cruises recently secured RRS Ernest Shackleton for the voyage via a charter party


Ice Navigation System Selected for Magne Viking

Magne Viking (Photo: Rutter)

Rutter Inc. announced that Viking Ice Consultancy selected the sigma S6 Ice Navigator system for installation on the Magne Viking, the first vessel to comply with the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Polar Code approved by DNV GL.   


Research Vessel Polarstern Returns to Bremerhaven

Research ice breaker Polarstern Photo AWI

Antarctic season ends in the homeport after half a year Bremerhaven / Germany, 11 May 2016. on Wednesday, 11 May 2016, the research vessel Polarstern is expected back in its home port of Bremerhaven after a good six months of Antarctic expeditions.


Arctic Could Be Ice-Free for First Time in 100000 Years

The measured sea ice extent over 2016, compared to the 1981-2010 average and 2012, when the record low for sea ice minimum extent was set. Graph: National Snow and Ice Data Center

 For the first time in 100,000 years the chilling landscape of Arctic known for its snow-capped mountains and polar bears may be without its sea ice either this year or the next.   Cambridge University Professor Peter Wadhams has made headlines this weekend


Arctic Sea Ice Sheds Weight in May

A May 21, 2016 satellite view of the Beaufort Sea off the coast of Alaska and Canada shows highly fragmented sea ice. Source: LANCE System/NASA/GSFC via National Snow and Ice Data Center

 Arctic sea ice hit a record low in May 2016 as scientists discovered the first-ever link between melting ice in Greenland and a phenomenon known to warm the area faster than the rest of the Northern Hemisphere.   According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in Boulder


Ice algae: The Engine of Life in the Central Arctic Ocean

Algae. Pic: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

 Algae that live in and under the sea ice play a much greater role for the Arctic food web than previously assumed.    In a new study, biologists of the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) showed that not only animals that live directly


Arctic Sea Ice Melt at Higher Level

Image: National Snow and Ice Data Center

 Sea ice is decreasing in the Arctic but year-to-year variability in sea ice extent is large. Ice extent is influenced by atmospheric circulation, with temperatures dictating ice melt, and winds shifting the ice, reports the Nature.   


Arctic Sea Ice Melt Continues

Average sea surface temperature measured by satellites using thermal emission sensors, which produce global data adjusted after comparison with ship and buoy data, and sea ice concentration derived from NSIDC near-real-time data for August 7, 2016. Also shown are drifting buoy temperatures at the ocean surface (colored circles); gray circles indicate that temperature data from the buoys are not available. (Credit: M. Steele, Polar Science Center/University of Washington)

As of August 14, Arctic sea ice extent is tracking third lowest in the satellite record, according to the National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC). The southern route through the Northwest Passage appears to be largely free of ice. Despite a rather diffuse ice cover in the Chukchi Sea


Academic Cooperation Addresses Maritime Ice Operations

From left: Ted Bågfeldt, Head of Academy, Kalmar Maritime Academy, Linnaeus University; Paal Aamaas, Senior Vice President, Kongsberg Digital; Tord Ytterdahl, Deputy CEO, Viking Supply Ships; and Ulf Gullne, Head of the Swedish Maritime Administration’s Ice-breaking Division signing the MoU for academic exchange and cooperation within the framework of the Kalmar Ice Academy. (Photo: Kongsberg)

A group of industry stakeholders have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for academic exchange and cooperation within the framework of the Kalmar Ice Academy, with a focus on collaboratively helping the offshore and shipping industries to increase operational safety and efficiency while


Ohmsett: Advancing Spill Response Every Day

Photo: Ohmsett

The National Oil Spill Response Research and Renewable Energy Test Facility has been an integral part of the spill response community for more than three and a half decades.   Tucked away on the shores of the Sandy Hook Bay in central New Jersey resides Ohmsett – The National Oil


Ecospeed Strengthens Polar Code Compliance

The operational success of the 1995-built RRS Ernest Shackleton is an exemplar of the Ecospeed coating’s performance (Image: Subsea Industries)

Subsea Industries has received an order for its specialist hull and rudder coatings for application to a shallow draught anchor handling tug supply (AHTS) vessel under construction at Turkey’s Atlas Shipyard.    The hard-type coatings were selected amidst strong competition






 
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