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Icemar: European service to navigate Arctic

Arctic (global-adventures.us): Europe’s Global Monitoring system for Environment and Security (GMES) has launched a new $2.77 million (Euro 2 million) project to aid ships’ navigation in ice-infested waters in the European Arctic and the Baltic Sea. Over the next three years, organizations from Denmark, Finland, Germany, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom will work to establish a sea-ice information service to improve access to existing and new ice information products.

Led by Kongsberg Satellite Services (KSAT), Norway,

the ICEMAR service will provide continuous and accurate up-to-date information on the ice conditions in these regions. Most importantly include forecasts and the location and movements of icebergs. However the service has particular value for supporting safe passage of ships through the Arctic Ocean in the summer months. As a result route that would drastically shorten the shipping line between Europe and China by some 3,728 miles (6,000 kilometers). The shortcut can lead to substantial savings in time, fuel and CO2 emissions.

The project will create a system to allow users to enter their specified area of interest and retrieve all available ice information for that region. This will be displayed in geo-referenced layers on existing equipment on the ship’s bridge. After that information will be available in areas with only minimum internet connections.

Participating countries will build on existing ice service elements including GMES and national/regional institutional and commercial services. The ICEMAR service will allow for future expansions and the inclusion of additional data. After that coverage of new geographical regions as they become available.

12 collaborators, including system and satellite service providers, ice chart producers and maritime educators are currently part of the consortium. After that provide feedback on their information requirements when operating in these ice-affected regions.

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Chief Editor at Global Adventures Magazine

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