North Pole: the High-North 2017 campaign has begun
Eighty-nine years after Commander Umberto Nobile’s expedition, the Italian Navy returns to the North Pole with the scientific expedition High-North 2017.
The High-North 2017 campaign takes place from 9 to 29 July 2017 in the Arctic Ocean, in the waters around the Svalbard Islands, in Norway.
The Alliance military ship will host (as scientific partners) researchers from the National Research Council – CNR, through the IREA, ISSIA and ISAC Institutes, and from the National Institute of Oceanography and Experimental Geophysics – OGS, the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development – ENEA, and the NATO Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation – CMRE.
The scientific activities will mainly be in the fields of geophysics, marine geology, seafloor characterization and physical oceanography and will include integrated atmospheric and optical measurements: the objective is to acquire useful evaluation elements in multiple fields, starting with that of climate, to better understand the evolution of climate and its impact on our planet.
The expedition will reach unexplored areas of the ocean, starting from Reykyavik (Iceland) and focusing the research activity on the southwestern coasts of the Svalbard Islands, where the researchers will carry out measurements and sampling in the atmosphere, sea, sediment and subsoil. Crucial support will be provided by underwater robotic vehicles made available by the ISSIA-CNR for the tasks that would be too dangerous for humans.
The High-North 2017 expedition is part of the activities carried out by the Italian Navy in support of the Arctic Table, within which it provides specialist support to the Emergency, Prevention, Preparedness and Response working group of the Artic Council. A particularly relevant element of this activity is the role of the Hydrographic Institute of the Italian Navy, as the marine focal point of the national scientific community in the Arctic.
The Alliance military ship is a multi-purpose research vessel that mainly carries out activities for the NATO-CMRE. It has already been used for many scientific activities, showing excellent performance in terms of noise reduction, operational efficiency and on-board equipment.