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Arctic Prospects

On board the Russian research vessel heading to the Arctic Circle

Welcome aboard the legendary "Academician Keldysh”, a research vessel that has played a big part in many scientific projects. Built in 1980, she has 17 laboratories and now, she also carries two self-propelled submersibles for submarine exploration. She is a huge ship with over 40 crew members, and is constantly working to provide various scientific groups with both a home and a workplace. Scientists consider it an honour to sail aboard the highly respected “Keldysh”.

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A voyage on board the "Keldysh" is indeed a life-experience. Crew members and scientists live like a big family. In the open waters, they get to experience the raw forces of nature and the rough beauty of the sea. Traditionally, first time passengers or crew, when crossing the Arctic Circle, have to drink the salty waters of the White Sea and solemnly repeat the Polar Explorer’s oath: “To observe naval traditions and preserve the Arctic environment”.

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On this voyage, the scientists are conducting several important experiments concerning changes in the world’s oceans. The vessel navigates into the Arctic Circle, close to the Arctic shelf, a disputed territory with several nations staking their claims on it. One of the scientists is Mikhail Kononov, he played a part in drafting Russia’s claim that has been submitted to the UN. During a lecture on board the ship, attended by younger researchers, he explains the science behind the claim.