2020-2021 USAP Field Season
Palmer, Antarctica Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER): land-shelf-ocean connectivity, and ecosystem resilience and transformation, in a sea-ice influenced pelagic ecosystem
Dr. Oscar Schofield
Supporting Stations: ARSV Laurence M. Gould
Palmer Long-Term Ecological Research (PAL-LTER) started in 1990 to address the hypothesis that the annual sea-ice cycle may be the major determinant of spatial/temporal changes in the structure and function of Antarctic marine communities. Research now includes bacteria, viruses, phytoplankton, krill, macrozooplankton, penguins, seabirds, and marine mammals. The PAL-LTER model traces the effects of changing climate and the extent, duration, and seasonality of sea ice on ecosystem composition and dynamics in the Western Antarctic Peninsula, where satellite observations over the past 35 years indicate the average duration of sea ice cover is now about 90 days shorter. Six collaborative projects on the ARSV Laurence M. Gould (LMG) cruise and at Palmer Station will use moorings, numerical modeling, oceanographic cruises, and environmental sampling to address core hypotheses.
Field Season Overview
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the tasks of the Physical Oceanography team (C-021) will be carried out by the deploying team lead, Chief Scientist Oscar Schofield. The science team plans on conducting a search and recovery effort for the 300.100 mooring deployed in the 2018-19 season, which was not recovered in 2020. They will also recover and re-deploy the 300.100 mooring deployed in the 2019-20 season.
Deploying Team Members