Portal:Arctic

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Arctic Circle
Arctic Circle.


The Arctic- The geography north of the Arctic Circle is predominantly ocean, mostly ice-covered, but a great deal of land falls within the Circle as well. Recently the region north of the Arctic Circle has gained significant international attention due primarily to the threat of global warming. Initial attention came as a result of the fact that the earth's poles are the points at which the planet tends to warm the fastest thereby acting as harbingers of what is to come. The melting of the ice in the Circle is making the Northwest Passage, the shipping routes through the northern-most latitudes, more navigable, raising the possibility that some day the Arctic region could become a prime trade route. In addition it is believed that the Arctic seabed may contain substantial oil fields which may become accessible if the ice covering them melts. These factors have led to recent international debates as to which nations can claim sovereignty or ownership over the waters north of the Circle.

The Arctic Ocean, located in the northern hemisphere and mostly in the Arctic north polar region, is the smallest and shallowest of the world's five major oceanic divisions. The International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) recognizes it as an ocean, although some oceanographers call it the Arctic Mediterranean Sea or simply the Arctic Sea, classifying it as one of the mediterranean seas of the Atlantic Ocean. Alternatively, the Arctic Ocean can be seen as the northernmost lobe of the all-encompassing World Ocean.

Almost completely surrounded by Eurasia and North America, the Arctic Ocean is largely covered by sea ice throughout the year. The Arctic Ocean's temperature and salinity vary seasonally as the ice cover melts and freezes[3]; its salinity is the lowest on average of the five major oceans, due to low evaporation, heavy freshwater inflow from rivers and streams, and limited connection and outflow to surrounding oceanic waters with higher salinities. The summer shrinking of the ice has been quoted at 50%.[1] The National Snow and Ice Data Center NSIDC use satellite data to provide a daily record of Arctic sea ice cover and the rate of melting compared to an average period and specific past years.

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Relics of Franklin's 1845 expedition, from the Illustrated London News, 1854
Franklin's lost expedition was a doomed British voyage of Arctic exploration led by Captain Sir John Franklin that departed England in 1845. A Royal Navy officer and experienced explorer, Franklin had served on three previous Arctic expeditions, the latter two as commanding officer. His fourth and last, undertaken when he was 59, was meant to traverse the last unnavigated section of the Northwest Passage. The entire expedition complement, Franklin and 128 men, died of causes natural and unnatural after their ships became icebound in Victoria Strait near King William Island in the Canadian Arctic.

Pressed by Franklin's wife and others, the Admiralty launched a search for the missing expedition in 1848. Prompted in part by Franklin's fame and the Admiralty's offer of a finder's reward, many subsequent expeditions joined the hunt, which at one point in 1850 involved eleven British and two American ships. Several of these ships converged off the east coast of Beechey Island, where the first relics of the expedition were found, including the graves of three crewmen. In 1854, explorer John Rae, while surveying near the Canadian Arctic coast southeast of King William Island, acquired relics of and stories about the Franklin party from the Inuit. A search led by Francis Leopold McClintock in 1859 discovered a note left on King William Island with details about the expedition's fate. Searches continued through much of the 19th century.

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Roald Amundsen
Roald Engelbregt Gravning Amundsen (Norwegian pronunciation: [ˈɾuːɑl ˈɑmʉnsən]), (July 16, 1872 – c. June 18, 1928) was a Norwegian explorer of polar regions. He led the first Antarctic expedition to reach the South Pole between 1910 and 1912. He was also the first person to reach both the North and South Poles. He is known as the first to traverse the Northwest Passage. He disappeared in June 1928 while taking part in a rescue mission. With Douglas Mawson, Robert Falcon Scott, and Ernest Shackleton, Amundsen was a key expedition leader during the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration.

In 1903, Amundsen led the first expedition to successfully traverse the Northwest Passage between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans (something explorers had been attempting since the days of Christopher Columbus, John Cabot, Jacques Cartier, and Henry Hudson), with six others in a 47 ton steel seal hunting vessel, Gjøa.

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Wikinews Arctic portal
  • April 25: UK announces £200 million polar research ship
  • September 4: Wikinews Shorts: September 2, 2010
  • September 3: Wikinews Shorts: September 3, 2010/Fuel tanker aground in Northwest Passage
  • June 21: Greenland assumes self rule Sunday
  • January 10: Canadian trio claim South Pole record for trans-Antarctic trip
  • December 10: Wikinews Shorts: December 10, 2008
  • October 28: Arctic ice thickness decreasing, suggests satellite data study
  • August 28: 73M-year-old fossilized fish found in Canada
  • August 27: Canadian military exercise NANOOK 2008 travels through uncharted waters
  • June 28: The North Pole may possibly be ice free by summer
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Eclipse seen from space

Description: Arctic eclipse seen from space

Author: NASA


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Radiative-forcings.svg
Aylesiceshelf.jpg


Tabad(ca1905).jpg


gastropod with wing-like parapodia and translucent shell

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  • As an eyewitness to the changing topography of the Arctic, I was stunned to see the rapid repercussions of global warming for the region, its wildlife habitat and indigenous cultures.
  • Source Arctic Explorer Will Steger Issues Statement Regarding the Hunt Ice Shelf Break Off. Will Steger

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Greenland
Panoramic view of 'Bodø' is a city and municipality in the county of Nordland, Norway.. Photo credit Lars Røed Hansen

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