Arctic Voyage Departs Dutch Harbor

June 25, 2011

DUTCH HARBOR, Alaska — Low clouds and damp, chilly air did little to stifle the anticipation of 47 researchers onboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy as it powered away from Dutch Harbor, Alaska. At 8 a.m. local time, the icebreaker, scientists and crew forged north, marking the start to NASA’s 2011 ICESCAPE voyage.

On June 25, 2011, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy headed north from Dutch Harbor, Alaska. Credit: NASA/Kathryn Hansen

The goal, simply, is to collect data from ocean and sea ice stations to find out how changes in the Arctic — particularly the changing sea ice — affect the ocean’s chemistry and ecosystems. It’s a job that NASA does from space, providing coverage over the entire Arctic region. To better understand what satellites see, however, we need boots on deck and on the ice to tease out the Earth system’s complex connections and processes.

A few final glances back to shore and we turn our sights ahead. For five weeks we’ll be living together, eating together, and executing a well choreographed dance of data collection and analysis.

Get a taste of shipborne Arctic science by following our daily blog posts. Here’s a preview oft what’s lined up …

Sundays: Tales from ICESCAPE
See the mission’s drama unfold as we relay the process of scientific discovery, both its challenges and successes.

Mondays: Image of the week
We present our favorite image of the week along with background information putting the image in context with mission science.

Tuesdays: Tech Tuesday
Shows off some of the cool instruments and gadgetry that make ICESCAPE science possible.

Wednesdays: Q&A
Who are the people behind the mission? Here we profile a scientist or crew member with a series of question and answers.

Thursdays: Tales from ICESCAPE  
See the mission’s drama unfold as we relay the process of scientific discovery, both its challenges and successes.

Fridays: Sound of the week
So you’ve seen the pictures, but what does research aboard an icebreaker in the Arctic sound like?

Saturdays: Arctic history
ICESCAPE is not the first scientific mission to study the Arctic. How did we get to this point? How will ICESCAPE continue the legacy?

Long: 166 31.508W Lat: 53 54.231N

12 thoughts on “Arctic Voyage Departs Dutch Harbor”

  1. My name is James C. Wallace II and I am an Adjunct Faculty member of Lake Land College in Mattoon, Illinois. I teach Weather & Climate this summer and our class will be following your mission closely. I have been using Facebook as part of our class curriculum and your mission fits in perfectly with our class. If you wish, you may look us up on Facebook and follow us as we follow you. Type in Lake Land Weather & Climate and then click on the Like button so we can co-venture.

    Looking forward to what you folks may find.

  2. Best of luck team. Keep safe and hope all goes well. Will be following with great respect and admiration. Johannesburg.

  3. I wish you all the best in your quest for knowledge, scientific inquiry & analysis and your reports for keeping us informed.

  4. HI,

    I am 11 years old and I am interested in what you will be looking for when you reach the Artic. What is the weather like? What kind of test will you be doing?

    From Chase and Lindsay (my younger sister)

  5. Fantastic cruise log! I’m looking forward to following the science during this cruise. I hope it’s a productive and enjoyable experience for everyone!

  6. you guys are doing the same as the chinese on cctv4, yesterday they were talking in a tv program about the migrations of persons to americas from asia

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