The Arctic 100 Expedition planned by Arctia with a number of Finnish and international research and business partners will be postponed to 2018. The project group did not manage to secure a financial basis within a timetable that would have made it possible to realise the project in the summer of 2017. However, the support already secured by Arctia as well as the extensive international interest in the project are weighty reasons for continuing to plan the Project.
The Arctic Expedition 100 is an international expedition in Arctic waters on board a Finnish icebreaker. The aim of the journey is both to collect new scientific data and to deepen international cooperation in the field of Arctic research on the basis of Finnish expertise. Financing for the journey will be sought from the international research community and businesses by utilising existing research networks.
Arctia’s multipurpose icebreaker Nordica in Arctic waters - Image courtesy of Arctia Ltd
Based on feedback received by Arctia, today’s expeditions onboard research vessels in the Arctic are scattered and carried out with varying timetables. Furthermore, many research vessels cannot operate in the most challenging ice conditions. Regular expeditions to the same areas would enable the collection of reliable research data. They would also create a platform for continuous cooperation between various actors and provide also those countries that do not have icebreakers a cost-efficient opportunity to perform research in polar regions.
According to Finland’s Strategy for the Arctic Region, “Finland’s ambition is to set an example as an Arctic expert both in research and in the responsible commercial exploitation of such expertise”. To support this goal, Arctia offers its multipurpose icebreakers that are excellent for various types of research missions in both polar regions of the world.
“We hope that the Finnish research organisations that have already joined the Arctic 100 Expedition project and the Finnish research community in general would continue to plan this nationally important project with us”, said Arctia’s CEO Tero Vauraste, who will again travel to Asia to present Finland’s Arctic expertise.
Vauraste points out that Sweden has for many years been using Oden as a research icebreaker, and Norway will soon complete the construction of its new polar research vessel Kronprins Haakon. Both countries also have a national coordination body that coordinates polar research and enables extensive international partnership projects. Such a body does not exist in Finland.
“If Finland wants to carry out polar research on the same level with its neighbouring countries and attract major international research sponsors, we must not only offer vessels that are operable in polar regions but also join forces here in Finland for partnership projects such as the Arctic Expedition 100”, Vauraste encourages.