A03 Challenges for unexplored frontiers
- The Role
- With the introduction of unmanned aerial vehicles such as underwater robots (AUVs), we will try to elucidate unexplored areas of the Antarctic ocean, such as the structure of sea ice, ice shelves and along the marginal ice zone and seabed. We also aim to measure a three-dimensional surface shape of the Antarctic sea ice, glaciers, and land areas in high resolution using unmanned aerial vehicles.
We will make a breakthrough in the studies of ice sheets and the ocean besides our project by using data obtainable.
- Research overview
- Introduction of a floating and sinking type water salinity meter will enable us to conduct a continuous observation beneath the sea ice. We will also develop technologies to conduct three-dimensional observations over a large area, in planar and vertical directions beneath the sea ice and ice shelves using autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). Introduction of the unmanned and underwater robots will enable us to conduct conventional observations in unexplored areas. We will also promote our research for the elucidation of the influx of freshwater from the Antarctic ice of land origin, the sea bottom topography that records ice sheet history, and dynamics of the abyssal circulation of the ocean beneath the sea ice. We will conduct this research project in collaboration with the bottom water group, the solid earth group, and the modelling group.
- We will construct stable flight technology of unmanned aerial vehicles in the polar region, fly them automatically with a small laser scanner, and create three-dimensional, surface shape data of sea ice, glaciers, exposed rocks, and inland mountains in the margin of the Antarctic Ice Shelf with high accuracy and high resolution. We will conduct this research project in collaboration with the ice sheet group and the solid earth group.