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China Arctic expedition reaches further north
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China's third Arctic expedition team started research operations in 87 degree north latitude, the northernmost part of the Arctica that the research team has ever arrived.

The scientific expedition team's helicopter landed on a large piece of a floating ice after an 87-minute flight.

The scientists took pictures and videos from the helicopter for further research.

Zhang Haisheng, chief scientist of China's third Arctic expedition team, said it was the first time that China has carried out research at such a high latitude, which showed China's improving ability in Arctic research.

The Arctic sea ice melting as a result of global warming helps the team successfully get deeper into this area and carry out a comprehensive study on the polar environment, he added.

Zhang also said the team has conducted a series of research activities in the Bering Sea and Arctic Ocean on oceanography, sea ice, and atmospheric subjects.

During the expedition from Shanghai on July 11, the team collected lots of data and samples, and achieved preliminary results, such as the discovery of salinity reduction in some Arctic sea areas, circulation anomalies and atmospheric circulation fluctuation, he said.

Further research will be carried out based on those data and samples by which the scientists hope to find answers to the influence of the global climate change and the response of the North Pole to such changes, Zhang added.

(Xinhua News Agency August 31, 2008)

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