Time zones on the top of the world

Illustration of the time zones of the world, where the earth is seen from the top (source).

The last week or so we have been doing bathymetric mapping surveys of the seabed in an area more west, close to Canada. We transited from the pole further south, to around 82°N 142°W, for these surveys. Transiting 7° south may not sound like much, but it is approximately 780 km (I wrote about the conversion between degrees and distances here). I was surprised by the noticeable difference in light.

I want to talk a bit about time zones and longitudes, which are actually a bit tricky up North. When you travel east and west in the world, depending on which longitude (breddegrad) you are on, there are different time zones. This is because night and day occur at different times in different places on Earth, due to Earths rotation. I assume most people are familiar with this. The first figure below illustrate the time zones of the world on a map of polar stereographic projection (the North Pole is in the middle, and the equator on the outer edge. I have another post coming up on maps can be tricky business in the Arctic.) You can see that the closer you get to the Pole, the closer are the lines/longitudes and therefore the time zones. Since the longitudes define the time zones, and the longitudes come together at the poles, the time zones in reality change a lot with small distances up here.

Continue reading

Photo of the day: Seaspray and bits of ice

Local time: 2016-09-04 15:52
Position: 84° 42.895’N 171° 59.988’W
Heading: 307°
Speed: 10.3 knots
Water depth: 2010 m
Wind speed: 19.2 m/s
Air temperature: -1.9°C
Sea temperature: -1.4°C

Ice conditions and concentration vary greatly in the Arctic Ocean . The last days we have been in transit in open water. The only ice we see are these bits of ice, bobbing up and down in the waves.

The contrast between the motions of the ship in ice and open water is huge. There are no waves in the ice, as they are damped by the ice. As we entered open water, the ship started rolling and pitching more due to the swell. It has been a long time since anyone has been sea sick on the ship, but today there has been a couple of grey faces. Luckily, we are entering more ice soon!


Two ships meet: Oden and LSSL

Two bows and a sunset (Even though it’s morning!? More on that later.)

Local time: 2016-02-09 16:21
Position: 82° 23.40’N 141° 13.14’W
Heading: 65°
Speed: 0.7 knots
Water depth: 2858 m
Wind speed: 6.3 m/s
Air temperature: -2.3°C
Feels like (wind chill): -8.19°C
Sea temperature: -1.4°C

Today we met up with the other ship who is part of the expedition Arctic Ocean 2016, the Louis S. St-Laurent (LSSL). This was the last day where we would sail together, after the meeting we were heading different ways. Therefore, today’s plan was to load over rocks collected from dredging from Oden to LSSL and to visit each other’s ships. Continue reading

Halfway through!

img 1773

The LSSL following in our wake

Local time: 2016-08-30 21:19
Position: 82° 34.80’N 138° 19.34’W
Heading: 160°
Speed: 2.5 knots
Water depth: 3337 m
Wind speed: 11.3 m/s
Air temperature: -0.75°C
Feels like (wind chill): -7.96°C
Sea temperature: -1.5°C

Monday was day 22 out of 44, so now we are over half way in the expedition. Time flies!

Continue reading

We survived surströmming

img 2064

Tin can with surströmming

Local time: 2016-08-28 10:28
Position: 86° 26.18’N 134° 51.40’W
Heading: 235°
Speed: 6 knots
Water depth: 2440 m
Wind speed: 14.1 m/s
Air temperature: -0.1°C
Feels like (wind chill): -7.32°C
Sea temperature: -1.5°C

On Friday night, the whole ship was invited to surströmming evening after dinner. Many people, me included, had never had surströmming before, but many had heard about the infamous northern Swedish dish. Surströmming is fermented herring, and according to the rumours, it is very, very smelly. The fact that the feast was to take place not in the mess where we usually eat, but in the large storage room beneath the helideck, also gave a hint to it involving a strong odour. However, I was told, the taste is better than its smell. Anxiously, I signed up. You have to try everything once, right? Continue reading


Local time: 2016-08-28 15:03
Position: 86° 21.76’N 134° 26.40’W
Heading: 246°
Speed: 5.3 knots
Water depth: 2140 m
Wind speed: 19.8 m/s
Air temperature: -0.1°C
Feels like (wind chill): -8.59°C
Sea temperature: -1.5°C

(English below)

Dette har jeg glemt å nevne, men forrige uke ble jeg intervjuet på radio. Hallo P3 har en spalte som heter Utenriksstudentene, hvor jeg er med som doktorgradsstipendiat og forteller litt om hva det innebærer å ta doktorgrad.

Continue reading

Why we are here: A brief introduction

img 1765

The Louis S. St. Laurent following in the wake of Oden on Arctic Ocean 2016.

I wanted to do a brief post about the main reason behind the expedition Arctic Ocean 2016. My fellow shipmate Grace Shephard (geologist and post doc from the University of Oslo) have already written an excellent in-depth post about this.

The main purpose of the expedition Arctic Ocean 2016 is to collect data for supporting Canada’s claim for an extended continental shelf. So what does that mean? According to the United Nations’ Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), every country with a coastline has an economic zone of 200 nautical miles (nm) extending from their coast. This means that the country’s border goes 200 nm, about 360 km, out in the sea from the coast. However, the UN says, you can extend your border further out in the sea if your seabed extends out beyond these 200 nm. This can be for example a subsea mountain ridge or the continental shelf that is continuing outwards. Many countries have claimed extra territory like this, like for example Norway on the Norwegian continental shelf.

Continue reading