Wednesday, April 29, 2009

North Pole: ice 100% thicker than expected

Radio Bremen (translated from German), April 28th, 2009 

Surprising results

In Canada, "Polar 5", a research aircraft (see 27 hi-res pictures ), has ended its recent Arctic expedition today. During the flight, scientists were measuring the ice thickness in regions that have never been overflown before. The result: the sea ice is apparently thicker than the scientists had suspected.

Under normal conditions, the ice is formed within two years and ends up being slightly above 2 meters of thickness. "Here, the thickness was as high as four meters," said the spokesperson for the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven. According to the scientists, this conclusion seems to contradict the warming of the ocean water.

Besides the thickness of ice, the expedition has also investigated the composition of the air. Lasers were used to study the air pollution by emissions from various countries. Within weeks, the results will be evaluated. About 20 scientists from the U.S., Canada, Italy, and Germany participated in the project.


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