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DAMOCLES - investigating changes in polar snow and ice

Five research ships with scientists from 16 countries are currently in the Arctic performing groundbreaking research to better understand climate changes.

The European Union Programme DAMOCLES (Developing Arctic Modelling and Observing Capabilities for Long-term Environment Studies), which is part of the International Polar Year, is concerned with the potential for a significantly reduced sea ice cover, and the impacts this might have on the environment and human activities, both regionally and globally.

*******Polarstern reports: The sea ice is getting thinner*******
Large areas of the Arctic sea ice are now only one metre deep, which means the thickness of the ice has halved since 2001, initial findings from the research ship Polarstern show.

Fifty scientists are on board Polarstern for two and a half months. Their main task is to investigate the sea ice in the central Arctic. In addition to thinning ice sheets, they have also discovered that ocean currents and community structures are changing. 

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