China's icebreaker Xuelong-2 sets sail for 39th Antarctic expedition
Updated 16:18, 27-Oct-2022

China's polar icebreaker Xuelong-2 departed from Shanghai for the 39th Antarctic expedition on Wednesday. The other icebreaker, Xuelong, is slated to join the expedition on October 31.

A crew of 255 Chinese scientists is split into two teams aboard the two vessels. The expedition is expected to return to China in early April 2023.

The expedition will research major scientific issues regarding how key areas of the Antarctic Ocean reflect and respond to climate change. It will carry out investigation and research in fields such as atmospheric composition, water environment, sedimentary environment and ecosystems.

Snow and ice monitoring as well as astronomical observation will also take place as part of the expedition along with China's Antarctic stations, including the Zhongshan, Taishan and Kunlun stations.

The team will detect the terrain underneath the ice in the area of Princess Elizabeth Land by using the polar fixed-wing aircraft Xueying 601.

The expedition will also rotate some staff for winter and replenish the supply at the Zhongshan and Great Wall stations.

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