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India’s Arctic Winter Expedition



  Feb 07, 2024

India’s Arctic Winter Expedition



Why are Indian scientists undertaking a winter voyage to the Arctic?

Indian scientists are embarking on a winter expedition to the Arctic to enable year-round monitoring of climatic and astrophysical conditions. This mission aims to bridge the data gaps present due to the absence of winter field experiments, offering new insights into climate change, sea-ice and ocean circulation, ecosystem adaptations, and astrophysical phenomena.

What challenges do scientists face during the Arctic winter expedition?

Scientists face several challenges, including acclimatizing to extreme cold temperatures around -15°C, adapting to polar nights with continuous darkness, and conducting research without direct sunlight. They also need to navigate the logistical challenges of traveling to and living in remote Arctic locations.

What kinds of experiments are planned during the expedition?

The team plans to conduct a diverse set of experiments including:

Observing radio-wave signals from outer space to understand the evolution of the universe.

Studying precipitation and the impact of climate change on the Arctic winter.

Investigating the atmospheric lightning phenomenon over the Arctic during winter.

Analyzing atmospheric aerosols and their influence on polar climate.

How does this expedition contribute to global climate research?

This winter expedition provides critical data on the Arctic’s winter climate, which is crucial for understanding global climate patterns, including those affecting the tropics and monsoons. The experiments conducted will offer insights into atmospheric, oceanic, and astrophysical processes that influence global climate systems.

What is the significance of Himadri station for India’s Arctic research?

Himadri station, India’s research base in the International Arctic Research base at Svalbard, Norway, is a cornerstone for India’s Arctic research. It enables Indian scientists to conduct year-round research activities, contributing to global understanding of polar science, climate change, and astrophysical phenomena.

What are the long-term goals of India’s winter expeditions to the Arctic?

The long-term goals include enhancing understanding of the Arctic’s winter ecosystem, contributing to global climate change models, and improving forecasts of weather and climate impacts. These expeditions aim to ensure continuous observation and research in the Arctic, thereby maximizing the use of Himadri research station and strengthening India’s presence in polar science.


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