20th Indian mission sets sail for Antarctica

Ulhas Joglekar ulhasj at SPAMbom4.vsnl.net.in
Wed Jan 10 18:27:02 MST 2001

3 January 2001

20th Indian mission sets sail for Antarctica
NEW DELHI: The 20th Indian scientific expedition to Antarctica has been
flagged off from South Africa's Cape Town and would conduct experiments in
areas of global climate change research, geophysical exploration,
environmental conservation and biological sciences.
Ninteen scientific institutions from all over the country are participating
in the mission which will also measure vertical and lateral movement of the
antarctic plate on a millimetre scale, Dr P C Pandey, director of the
National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research (NCAOR), who flagged off
the expedition on Sunday, said in a release on Monday.
The expedition, launched under the supervision of the NCAOR, Goa, is led by
geological survey of India's Mervin D'Souza who had been to the icy
continent four times earlier.
The expedition would conduct study to help international scientific
campaigns under the aegis of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research
The mission would also carry out studies on thickness of the ice and make
studies on the sub ice strata by ground probe radar, the release said.
The other experiments relate to studies on origin and genesis of cracks on
the ice shelf that result into the formation of icebergs from Antarctica,
sediments at the bottom of the fresh water lakes to study the past climate
of Antarctica and human biology.
Since 1981 India has been sending scientific expeditions to Antarctica
annually by adopting a multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional approach
involving more than 60 national institutions and laboratories. (PTI)
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