07, Jul 2019
Prelims level : Environment - Climate change and its Impacts Mains level : Climate Change
Why in News?
- Scientists from 17 nations will take part in the year-long MOSAIC mission as they anchor the RV Polarstern ship to a large piece of Arctic sea ice to study climate change.
- The MOSAiC mission stands for Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate.
- It is a one-year-long expedition into the Central Arctic, planned to take place from 2019 to 2020.
- For the first time a modern research icebreaker will operate in the direct vicinity of the North Pole year-round, including the nearly half year long polar night during winter.
- It comes about 125 years after Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen first managed to seal his wooden expedition ship, Fram, into the ice during a three-year expedition to the North Pole. MOSAiC will contribute to a quantum leap in our understanding of the coupled Arctic climate system and its representation in global climate models.
- The focus of MOSAiC lies on direct in-situ observations of the climate processes that couple the atmosphere, ocean, sea ice, bio-geochemistry and ecosystem.
Why Study Arctic Climate?
- The Arctic is a key area of global climate change, with warming rates exceeding twice the global average. The observed rate of climate change in the Arctic is not well reproduced in climate models.
- Many processes in the Arctic climate system are poorly represented in climate models because they are not sufficiently understood.
- Understanding of Arctic climate processes is limited by a lack of year round observations in the central Arctic.