Science and earth science

Polish Polar Research

Content

Polish Polar Research | 2000 | vol. 21 | No 2

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Abstract

Investigations of the snow cover at the end of the winter 1990/1991 were carried out in several areas in West Spitsbergen, namely, Lomonosovfonna, Kongsvegen, Fridtjovbreen, Amundsenisen and that north of the Hornsund Fjord. The physical properties and chemical nature of precipitation and the snow cover were determined. The studies revealed high variation in the precipitation and the thickness of the snow cover: 317 mm w.e. (water equivalent) in the Hornsund area, 659 mm w.e. at Lomonosovfonna, 1076 mm w.e. at Fridtjovbreen and 1716 mm w.e. at Amundsenisen. The salt loads deposited in the snow cover in different parts of West Spitsbergen were also calculated (2.8 t/km2 at Lomonosovfonna, 15.8 t/km2 at Kongsvegen and 43.2 t/km2 at Amundsenisen). An intensive process of demineralisation during the conversion of snow to firn was revealed, reaching as much as 90% during the first summer. An attempt to determine the anthropogenic element content using the pH values for the precipitation and snow cover was also made. A distinct correlation between the physico-chemical characteristic of snow layer and falling snow was found. On the basis of the quality of the precipitation and snow cover, West Spitsbergen has been classified into following provinces: (1) northern situated within Arctic High (Lomonosovfonna and Kongsvegen), (2) southern ndergoing mainly moving air masses from the Arctic High and Greenland Low (Amundsenisen and Hornsund region).

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Authors and Affiliations

Piotr Głowacki
Marian Pulina
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Abstract

Drilling operations of the Cape Roberts Project took place between 1997 and 1999 offshore of Cape Roberts in the western Ross Sea, Antarctica. These were made possible due to a group effort by geoscientists from Australia, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Great Britain, and the United States. The major goal of this undertaking was the recovery and analysis of sediment core, which was expected to provide a first East Antarctic record of the Early Cenozoic hothouse to icehouse climatic transition. This goal was not attained. Nevertheless, over the three seasons, a 1500 m long composite section was recovered, including a predominantly Early Oligocene to Early Miocene (34—17 Ma) glaciomarine succession. It was analyzed in terms of sediment physical properties, paleontology, tectonic structures and geophysics. This multidisciplinary investigation allowed detailed reconstruction of a significant portion of local environmental history, spanning a period of highly variable environmental conditions strongly affected by local glacier advance and retreat across the Victoria Land Basin margin.

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Authors and Affiliations

Wojciech Majewski
Cape Roberts Project Science Team
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Abstract

Polar stations became subject of keen interest of law-makers as the most effective manifestation of human activities in Antarctica. Legal procedures governing the establishment and regulations on operation and decommission of Antarctic stations are presented in this paper.

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Authors and Affiliations

Jacek Machowski

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The quarterly Polish Polar Research invites original scientific papers dealing with all aspects of polar research. The journal aims to provide a forum for publication of high-quality research papers, which are of international interest.

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