Glacialis is an innovative scientific expedition which aims to monitor marine mammals in one of the Earth’s last wilderness areas – the Arctic. The Arctic is an ecosystem that climate change is dramatically impacting every day. Melting ice caps are causing changes that will impact marine species on a global scale. With this in mind, the expedition’s team will be collecting data on marine fauna and their habitat to measure climate change and anthropogenic impact.

A community of partners supports this research effort, including RS Aqua. The purpose of the expedition is to improve knowledge about the Arctic by producing open access data and replicable protocols to raise public awareness of its protection and ultimately the first combined catalog of Arctic marine mammals.

The team of biologists, researchers, and a professional photographer will be travelling to the Arctic region for three consecutive summers, the first of which is already taking place on their sailing ship – the Atlantis. They will sail from Azores archipelago, Portugal, to the Baffin Sea, covering a distance of over 4500 nautical miles (8334 km) in 5 months. In an effort to encourage open science, the researchers will share their collected data on online open platforms.

To support their research on marine mammals and noise pollution monitoring, the GLACIALIS team will be using a Porpoise Passive Acoustic Recorder. The acoustic data collected from the Porpoise will be linked with visual identification via a UAV to improve the knowledge of acoustic characteristics of some Arctic species such as whales and dolphins.

We hope that this work will provide a greater understanding of the Arctic’s ecosystem and inform future conservation efforts.

To find out more about expedition GLACIALIS, you can visit their website here.

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