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RV Polarstern

Operator: AWI - Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research

Country: Germany

Website: http://www.awi.de/en/infrastructure/ships/polarstern/

Vessel Type: Ice Going Multipurpose Research Vessel

Vessel Class: Global

Operational Area under the calls: SVALBARD: transit to/from Bremerhaven

Number of Days Offered under the calls: 8 of transit + 3 additional days on stations

Endurance: 320 days

Scientist berths: 44

Length: 118m



RV Polarstern is a double-hulled icebreaker operational at temperatures as low as -50 °C. The ship is able to sail through 2 m thick ice with a speed of 5 knots and it breaks ice up to 3 m thickness. The ship contains nine research laboratories for biological, geological, geophysical, glaciological, chemical, oceanographic and meteorological research. Additional laboratory containers may be stored on and below deck. Refrigerated rooms and aquaria permit the transport of samples and living marine fauna. Special sounding devices with depth ranges up to 10,000 meters and which can penetrate up to 150 meters into the sea floor are available for scientific investigations. Hydro-acoustic survey systems such as Hydrosweep, Parasound and fishery sounders can be continuously operated.

Onboard scientific equipment:

Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (Ocean Surveyor 150 kHz) provides three-dimensional current vectors (to a depth of 150m);
Recording of temperature and salinity at two depths (5, 11 m) with separate Seabird systems (SBE 21, and SBE 38);
Guildline Type 8400A Salinometer;
CTD profiler (Seabird, Type SBE 911+), in combination with a rosette with 24 twelve-litre Niskin bottles;
A SIMRAD echo sounder with 4 separate Split Beam transducers of 38, 70, 120 and 200 kHz;
See Gravimeter KSS31;
High-pressure air compressor (210 bar, 516 l/s, 550 kW) and pulsar station with compressed-air store;
Deep-sea fan-beam „ HYDROSWEEP DS II“ (ATLAS Hydrosweep);
Sediment echo sounder PARASOUND DS III;
Meteorological observatory.

Mobile scientific equipment on request:

RV Polarstern can provide towable gear for various tasks such as plankton and fishing nets for the water column as well as the seabed. Core deposition frame, gravity corer, piston corer, and sediment samplers such as box and multi corer as well as dredges and additional sampling equipment.


Availability for EUROFLEETS2:

Modality of access under this proposal: full access to FS POLARSTERN is offered for a polar cruise in the vicinity of Svalbard in 2015. The cruise will take place on the transit from Bremerhaven to Longyearbyen or vice versa, which lasts about 8 days. The ship will offer three full days of additional time on scientific stations. Applications have to fit into the long-term schedule of POLARSTERN.

Support offered under this proposal: a) Transportation of cargo and personals, b) Food and Accommodation, c) Lab space and power supply, d) Communication, e) Operational and logistic supports, f) Basic data from meteorology, navigational and hydrographical observatories; g) Medical care


Travel and shipment costs:


Requirements for scientist:

Seafarers medical examination.

Technical Specifications:

For the technical specifications please see the EurOcean European Research Vessels InfoBase at