Nina Kirchner, senior lecturer in numerical ice sheet modeling working with MUST.
Nina Kirchner, Nina Kirchner, Senior Lecturer in Numerical Ice Sheet Modeling.
The marine environment is rapidly changing, especially in the polar regions. The changes will have serious consequences for the European climate and coastal regions, and will challenge the sustainable use and protection of marine ecosystems and functions.
Investment in MUST involves the creation of a national system for the use and further development of autonomous underwater vehicles, along with an upgrade to existing remote controlled submersibles.
“With an autonomous underwater vehicle (UAV) we will be able to acquire the much needed bathymetric data. Not only in front of a tidewater glacier, where conventional vessels can map the seafloor, but also beneath the floating ice tongue, where only an autonomous underwater vehicle can go,” says Nina Kirchner, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology at Stockholm University.
“The scientific value lies in that the submarine gives scientists access to the sea below the sea ice and at great depths – regions that cannot be studied with the help of other infrastructure and which therefore are blind spots,” says Michael Klages, manager of the Sven Loven Centre for Marine Sciences at the University of Gothenburg.
Acquiring this data is crucial to improving numerical ice models, which Nina Kirchner researches. Not only for predictive purposes, but also when reconstructing the dynamics of ice sheets which existed during former glacial periods and which by now have vanished.
“They can serve as analogues when analysing the response of the ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctic to a warming climate”, says Nina Kirchner.