Chinese researchers visiting Tromsø

The Chinese-Norwegian research project AMORA is developing measuring devices to improve the understanding of how the sun affects global warming, and which role the Arctic sea ice plays in this. The participants of the project recently met in Tromsø.

Chinese polar research scientists

Measuring light under the thin sea ice in Kongsfjorden, Svalbard. The measurements are gathered by pulling a sledge underneath the ice. From the left: Stephen Hudson (Norwegian Polar Institute), Marcel Nicolaus (Alfred Wegener Institute) and Ruibo Lei (Polar Research Institute of China). Photo: Sebastian Gerland / Norwegian Polar Institute

AMORA participants

From the left: Li Zhijun (Dalian University, Kina), Sebastian Gerland (NPI), Jari Haapala (Finnish Institute of Marine Research, Finland), Marcel Nicolaus (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany), Don Perovich (Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, USA), Stephen Hudson (NPI), Bin Cheng (Finnish Institute of Marine Research, Finland), Angelika Renner (NPI), Mats Granskog (NPI), Li Na (Polar Research Institute of China) and Ruibo Lei (Polar Research Institute of China). Photo: Ann Kristin Balto / Norwegian Polar Institute

The main focus of AMORA (Advancing Modeling and Observing Solar Radiation of Arctic Sea Ice) is to study the climate of ice and snow in the Arctic, to exchange knowledge between the two countries and to educate researchers. The project also provides a good opportunity for researchers to stay at participating institutions and conduct research visits and workshops. This autumn's meeting is the second AMORA meeting, the first took place in Shanghai last year.

In the AMORA project Norwegian and Chinese researchers are working together for the first time to study Arctic sea ice and snow. Data on weather and ice conditions in remote oceans is needed for this work to succeed. One of the main objectives of the prosject is to develop a drifting platform, a Spectral Radiation Buoy (SRB), that will automatically and continually measure sunlight and the most important properties of snow and sea ice. This unique buoy will transfer the data immediately to the participating research institutions via satellite.

This spring the first AMORA field study was conducted. In Kongsfjorden in Svalbard the researchers studied different types of sea ice by measuring sunlight; how much light ice, snow and open water reflects, and how much light passes through the ice to the sea below.

AMORA is a project under the Norwegian Polar Institute's centre ICE – a national centre for ice and climate research in the polar regions. The Norwegian Polar Institute is responsible for the project, and cooperates with researchers from the Polar Research Institute of China (Shanghai, China), Dalian University of Technology (Dalian, China), Finnish Institute of Marine Research (Helsinki, Finland), The Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (Bremerhaven, Germany) and Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (Hanover, USA). AMORA is financed by the Research Council of Norway.