Text and photos: Lina Alexandropoulou, CAGE
It’s Monday the 13th of July 2020, 13:54:09. According to the plan, the last core for this cruise has just been collected, processed, and put into cold storage waiting to be analyzed once back onshore. It has been an intense three days. Researchers, engineers, and crew members of R/V Helmer Hanssen joined forces for one main goal: to collect gravity cores. We faced several challenges, for example at one site the 6 m-long, steel barrel used for coring bent, proving that sometimes sediments can be too hard to core. Despite all this, by the end, we managed to acquire 20 gravity cores and recover a total of 52 meters of glacigenic and glaciofluvial sediments.
These sediment cores will form the basis for the GlaciBar research project led by Mariana Esteves, a researcher at CAGE, UiT. The main objective of this project is to characterize and constrain the timing of glacial retreat of the last Barents Sea Ice Sheet through Sentralbankrenna. This major trough hosted a fast-flowing and marine-terminating ice stream that shared many similarities with glaciers found in Antarctica today.
Working on the deck is always fun especially when the weather is nice, like in our case, allowing us to enjoy the Arctic summer and the midnight sun (even though it prefers to hide behind the clouds). But wait, the research cruise hasn’t finished yet. Now it’s time to go back to the instrument room where new scientific surprises are waiting for us