After three days of sailing, we arrived in the Gulf of Bothnia on Saturday afternoon. This northernmost sea between Sweden and Finland freeze over in winter, and this is where we will conduct the sea trials.
Ice in the Bothnian Bay.
Sunset meeting on the bridge.
We are performing sea trials in ice with two offshore anchor handling tug supply (AHTS) vessels. Magne Viking, the vessel I am on, has ice class but is not an icebreaker. This means it can sail and break ice in light ice conditions, due to its reinforced hull. The other vessel, Tor Viking, is an actual icebreaking AHTS. So we send that one in front when we are sailing to break the ice.
Hey guys! I am writing to you from a ship again! The next three weeks I will spend offshore on vessel Magne Viking, an anchor handler with ice class. We are part of what is going to be sea trials in ice with two ships in the Bothnian Bay, north in the Baltic Sea. Joining us is the vessel Tor Viking, an anchor handling vessel that is also an icebreaker.
Less than three weeks after leaving Svalbard after the Arctic Ocean 2016 expedition, I find myself back in this Arctic wonderland. How lucky am I? This is actually the fifth (!) time I am setting foot on Svalbard this year. I will do posts on my exciting previous visits later. This time, I am here do a course at the University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS).
The reason for me being on the Arctic Ocean 2016 research cruise is primarily to gather data for my PhD research work. I have promised a post about my work, so let me tell you a bit about what I am doing.