Antarctica

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Latest news

NIWA’s flagship research vessel Tangaroa leaves soon on a six-week voyage to Antarctica, making it one of the few full scientific expeditions to the continent since the global outbreak of COVID-19.
At the bottom of the Southern Ocean, near Cape Adare in East Antarctica, lies an undersea ridge which until this month was only known by its co-ordinates: -71.2132 latitude, 172.1649 longitude.
Five specialist NIWA divers were left ‘gasping’ during their recent plunge under the ice near Scott Base.
New measurements from the ocean under the centre of the Ross Ice Shelf have significantly improved our understanding of the complex processes that drive melting in Antarctica.

Our work

The Southern Ocean is under-sampled. Data collected continuously during the Antarctic Ecosystems Voyagehelped fill an important knowledge gap about oceanographic and atmospheric processes in this important region.
NIWA’s Antarctic fisheries research is allowing us to investigate possible effects of the longline Antarctic toothfish fishery on the toothfish population and on the local ecosystem.
Climate Present and Past is a core-funded project under NIWA's National Climate Centre. It aims to explore historical climate data and track past changes in climate through a range of approaches.
NIWA is conducting a five–year study to map changes in the distribution of plankton species in surface waters between New Zealand and the Ross Sea.

Latest videos

2018 - Antarctic Voyage Update #3
2018 - Antarctic Voyage Update #3
2018 - Antarctic Voyage Update #1
TAN 1802 - Antarctic voyage leader Dave Bowden on the phone from the Southern Ocean.
Dolphins farewell RV Tangaroa - 9 February 2018
RV Tangaroa is farewelled by a pod of dolphins as it heads off on its 12th voyage to the white continent. Footage courtesy of Kareen Schnabelke.
Researching NIWA's Antarctic sea ice

NIWA marine physics technician Brett Grant gives a tour of our Antarctic field camp and explains how we are conducting research into sea ice in the coldest place on the planet.

We are not far enough south yet to have 24 hours of daylight so it is still getting dark at night, albeit a bit later than in Wellington right now.

Today was a busy day! We continue to transit southwards but we released three oceanographic drifters at 56 degrees South

Today an emergency drill with fire hose practice and lifejacket familiarisation was run with all the crew.

Today’s main activity was a science safety tour.

Today our emergency training activity was focused on learning how to get in and out of our immersion suits, in under 2 minutes.

Antarctic voyage leader Dave Bowden on the phone from the Southern Ocean.

2018 - Antarctic Voyage Update #1
TAN 1802 - Antarctic voyage leader Dave Bowden on the phone from the Southern Ocean.

RV Tangaroa is farewelled by a pod of dolphins as it heads off on its 12th voyage to the white continent.

Dolphins farewell RV Tangaroa - 9 February 2018
RV Tangaroa is farewelled by a pod of dolphins as it heads off on its 12th voyage to the white continent. Footage courtesy of Kareen Schnabelke.

Tomorrow is “mob day” for 40 people heading to Antarctica for six weeks aboard NIWA’s research vessel Tangaroa.

Forty intrepid adventurers leave Wellington next week for a six-week scientific voyage to Antarctica.
In October a team of scientists from New Zealand and Finland travelled to Antarctica for a scientific diving expedition under the ice.
Read about the science that will be undertaken during the voyage.
Read details about the aims of the voyage and find information about the scientists and crew on board.
A selection of images from the voyage. We will be adding images as they are sent back from the vessel.
NIWA’s research vessel Tangaroa sets off for a six-week voyage to Antarctica in February. Six of those aboard explain what they’re doing, what they’re worried about and the one thing they wouldn’t be without.
RV Tangaroa is undertaking a six-week voyage to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean between 5 February and 21 March 2018 with scientists from NIWA and the University of Auckland.
A dramatic change in sea ice this year is likely to hamper a NIWA-led research project aiming to better understand how ice shelves will melt as the ocean warms.
The Deep South National Science Challenge is one of New Zealand’s most audacious collaborative projects in recent times.
Pioneering NIWA scientists are returning to the cold continent in October, this time to focus on the seabed.
The Ross Sea Marine Protected Area (MPA) in the Southern Ocean will help further research into the ecology of Antarctic toothfish.

The role of toothfish in the ecosystem.

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All staff working on this subject

Principal Scientist - Fisheries
Principal Scientist - Marine Ecology
Principal Scientist - Climate
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Marine Biogeochemistry Technician
Marine Mammal Acoustician
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Coastal and Estuarine Physical Processes Scientist
Fisheries Acoustics Scientist
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Principal Scientist - Marine Ecology
Emeritus Researcher – Atmospheric Radiation
Principal Scientist - Atmosphere and Climate
Principal Scientist - Fisheries
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Marine Physics Modeller
Principal Scientist - Marine Physics
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Atmospheric Technician
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Marine Ecology Technician
Principal Technician - Marine Biology
Algal Ecologist
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