India deploys its sub-surface ocean moored observatory in the Arctic

RVLANCENew Delhi (ISJ): India deployed its first sub-surface ocean moored observatory in the Arctic to study the climatic variability of the region and its influence on monsoon system in the country. The milestone was achieved on July 24, when a team of scientists from the National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research and National Institute of Ocean Technology deployed the country?s multi-sensor moored observatory roughly halfway between Norway and the North Pole. The observatory designed and developed by these two national research bodies is deployed on Norwegian Polar Institute?s research vessel RV Lance. The sensors are programmed to collect real-time data on seawater temperature, salinity, current and other vital parameters of the region named Kongsfjorden fjord.

The Kongsfjorden is an established reference site for the Arctic marine studies. It is considered a natural laboratory for studying climate variability, as it receives varying climatic signals from the Arctic and Atlantic in the course of an annual seasonal cycle.

?One of the major constraints in such a study has been the difficulty in reaching the location during the harsh Arctic winter and obtaining near-surface data. The IndARC observatory is an attempt to overcome this lacuna and collect continuous data from depths very close to the water surface as well as at different discrete depths,? said Ministry of Earth Sciences in an official release.

The data acquired would be of vital importance to the Indian climate researchers and to the international fraternity as well. In addition to providing for an increased understanding of the response of the Arctic to climatic variability, the data would also provide a good handle in our understanding of the Arctic processes and their influence on the Indian monsoon system through climate modelling studies, said the official release.

Image courtesy: Norwegian Polar Institute

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