Xuelong 2 embarks on nation's 39th Antarctic expedition

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Researchers aboard China's research icebreaker Xuelong 2, or Snow Dragon 2, on Wednesday embark on the country's 39th Antarctic expedition from Shanghai. A second group of researchers will set out on another polar research vessel, Xuelong, on Monday. They plan to carry out investigations in the fields of atmospheric composition, water environment, sedimentary environment and ecosystem at the South Pole and are expected to return to China in early April. [Photo/Xinhua]

The first group of researchers boarded China's research icebreaker Xuelong 2 on Wednesday to embark on China's 39th Antarctic expedition, starting from Shanghai, with a plan to conduct scientific research of the impact of global climate change on the key ocean area.

A second group of researchers will set out on another polar research vessel, Xuelong, on Monday. In all, 255 researchers will participate in this polar expedition, which will take about 180 days, according to the Ministry of Natural Resources. All of the researchers are expected to return in April 2023.

The scientific venture will include research on the polar region's air composition, its water environment and deposits and ecosystem to address major scientific issues such as world climate change.

The expedition will also engage in environmental monitoring and astronomical observation along the areas of China's Zhongshan, Taishan and Kunlun stations.

The replenishing of supplies and staff rotation at China's Zhongshan Station and Great Wall Station will also be completed by this expedition.

The 38th Antarctic expedition, which lasted 174 days, concluded on April 26.

Three teachers from Shanghai Maritime University will join the 39th Antarctic expedition research work.

Shanghai Maritime University signed a cooperation agreement with the Polar Research Institute of China on July 7, 2008. More than 20 teachers from the university have taken part in China's Antarctic expeditions.

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