Italian Research Council drones to study Arctic glaciers

(AGI) Rome, June 16 - Research drones of the Italian ResearchCouncil's Institute of Intelligent Systems for Automation(ISSIA-CNR) will take part in a scientific campaign due tobegin on Tuesday. Researchers aim to study the thermal exchangebetween the sea and the ice, obtaining new information andimages in order to more accurately understand and predictclimate changes. The sea fronts concerned are those of theKronebreen, Kongsbreen and Conwaybreen glaciers, in Norway'sSvalbard islands. Researchers will use robotic vehicles so asto avoid the risk of working too close to the three glaciers,from which large pieces of

(AGI) Rome, June 16 - Research drones of the Italian ResearchCouncil's Institute of Intelligent Systems for Automation(ISSIA-CNR) will take part in a scientific campaign due tobegin on Tuesday. Researchers aim to study the thermal exchangebetween the sea and the ice, obtaining new information andimages in order to more accurately understand and predictclimate changes. The sea fronts concerned are those of theKronebreen, Kongsbreen and Conwaybreen glaciers, in Norway'sSvalbard islands. Researchers will use robotic vehicles so asto avoid the risk of working too close to the three glaciers,from which large pieces of ice are likely to detach. "Shark isthe little autonomous semi-submersible robot that will measurethe environmental parameters and perform the water sampling,"explained Massimo Caccia, the director of ISSIA-CNR. He added:"Shark was entirely designed and developed by our Genoaoperating unit to collect data on the air-sea-ice interface; itis fitted with a compass and GPS, automatic control systems,and a radio to transmit images and telemetric values as well asreceiving instructions." The drone is technology-intensive."The device is also fitted with additional sensors," explainedGabriele Bruzzone, the project leader. He continued: "Apyrometer makes it possible to measure the surface temperatureof the water, while the multiparameter probe acquires thewater's thermal conductivity, temperature, pH, redox anddissolved oxygen, and an echo sounder maps the sea-bottom'sbathymetry." In order to assist its navigation around the smallicebergs which could impede its passage, Shark will be guidedby an eight-helix drone equipped with a photo- and video-camerafor shooting images of the glacier terminus.. .