Norwegian Polar Institute
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Nansen Legacy main transect
Collaboration in the Eastern Barents Sea
The Nansen Legacy combines extensive ship-based data collections with time series provided by oceanographic moorings. The Nansen Legacy moorings are part of a larger mooring network tracing the inflow of warm Atlantic water into the Arctic Ocean. As such they are an important contribution to the international effort of recording and understanding the ongoing climatic changes in the Arctic Ocean.
The Nansen Legacy ‘inflow’ moorings are situated at four strategic locations in the northwestern Barents Sea. These are locations which have deeper connections either to the Atlantic influenced southwestern part of the Barents Sea, or to the warm current that follows topography on the northern side of the Barents Sea.
Providing data from the northern Barents Sea shelf region, the Nansen Legacy complements oceanographic moorings by projects like A-TWAIN/SIOS-InfraNor, CATS and NABOS, which cover the Atlantic Water boundary current along the Eurasian Basin. These moorings are deployed throughout the project period, in order to capture seasonality and inter-annual variability.
In addition to the ‘inflow’ moorings, the Nansen Legacy deploys year-long moorings at selected locations to study key processes for redistribution of energy and matter. From 2018-19, two mooring arrays were deployed in the Atlantic Water boundary current north of Svalbard. From 2020-2021, moorings are stand deployed near the Polar Front in the central Barents Sea.
All moorings comprise sensors to measure basic physical parameters such as temperature, salinity and currents. Some moorings have more extensive instrumentation including sea ice thickness, radiation, chl-a fluorescence, nitrate, oxygen, pH and biological acoustics (in collaboration with Research Foci 2 and 3).