Challenging Habitat

On Pelican of London, we have weighed anchor and are on our way from the Isle of Man to Dublin Bay.

Soon we’ll set sails and our progress will depend on nature’s forces. There is beauty in that and applying the skills, experience and strength of the ship’s crew to harness the wind. A metaphor for life.

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Recently, I attended a cetacean identification course with Orca (highly recommended!) and it featured stunning videos of dolphins and whales.

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I’m at sea aboard Pelican of London with 23 young sailors who share my interest in science and technology.

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Back in January, Seas Your Future facilitated a fantastic opportunity for six young Scientists in Residence to carry out research project during a 12 day voyage on the Pelican of London along the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. Here you can find out what they discovered:

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The team safely back in Argentina and preparing to go their separate ways to rejoin families and pick up their lives back home, Paul find time for a concluding message.

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It was such fun to do this webinar for school kids from different ages and I was truly astonished what well-considered and pertinent questions I was asked. Well done, all of you!

There was one question I couldn’t answer at the time, but I looked it up after the webinar:

The amount of snow falling on Antarctica has been estimated to be around 2000 Gigatons per year. This is enough to cover the whole of Antarctica in 14 cm of water if it melted (or, as the estimate comes from Belgium, it would cover that country in 66 m of water).

The centre of Antarctica is relatively dry and most of the snow falls on the margins of the continent, in particular in on the Antarctic Peninsula and the West Antarctic Ice Shelf. To put it into a Southwest UK context, in terms of water, the western Antarctic Peninsula receives about as much as Dartmoor (around 2000 – 2500 mm).

So, what is a Gigaton? ‘Giga’ is the prefix for one billion (1 000 000 000 or 109). So, we are talking about 2 x 1012 tons or 2 x 1015 kg (1 000 000 000 000 000 kg).

I have the feeling that the Antarctic Quest 21 team just sneaked out of the country before more stringent ‘omicron’-related restrictions made it even more difficult to get this expedition on its way.

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The expedition team of Antarctic Quest 21 are preparing for their departure: a final training in the Alps in a week’s time and then they’ll be off to Ushuaia, Argentina, where they will meet the ship SeaVenture of Polar Latitudes, which has carried the equipment South and will drop the team on the ice at Portal Point mid-December.

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Today LikeToBe launched the Antartic Quest 21 School Outreach Programme. Members of the expedition team introduced the expedition and answered questions of school kids from as far away as South Africa. We covered everything from expedition food rations and equipment to how the team’s training ahead of and the scientific projects carried out during the expedition.

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The tall ship Pelican of London is off the African coast and on its way across the Atlantic with a bunch of kids from Germany on their big Ocean College adventure.

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As the tall ship Pelican of London makes her way down the English Channel to the edge of the continent and across the Atlantic, the young Ocean College students are introduced to a game that involves transferring a cupful of water from plate to plate balanced on the heads of a line of participants.

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