The team, consisting of a 20-member scientific delegation and three high school students, will first fly with the THY aircraft from Istanbul Airport to Sao Paulo, Brazil and, after a long journey, reach Antarctica’s King George Island.
TÜBİTAK MAM Polar Research Institute Director and Coordinator of the 8th National Antarctic Science Expedition Prof. DR. Burcu Özsoy said the team is ready for the expedition.
Stating that people who work in various institutions to conduct scientific research were included in the team, Özsoy said: “Within the “Polar Research Projects” competition tender opened by TÜBİTAK BİDEB at TEKNOFEST last year, our three High school winners added to our Antarctica team this year, in addition to our 20-person team. We have worked on our team for a long time.” “The journey awaits. Weather permitting, we plan to arrive in Antarctica in 2-3 days.” said.
“Trialing these technologies there is very important as part of the national technology movement.”
Özsoy explained that they will start scientific studies after arriving in Antarctica:
“Our expedition duration is usually 30-35 days. We have 22 separate science projects planned. Weather permitting. We will be conducting these studies in all different, very valuable scientific areas. We have studies. We have studies on geological structures, from glacial retreat to ocean tides, from atmospheric conditions to microplastic measurements, on Horseshoe Island, 68 S latitude, where our temporary campus is located in Antarctica. We have also developed technologies. In particular, testing these technologies there is very important as part of the national technology movement. It offers.”
Özsoy pointed out that they were able to carry out measurements with the device they developed for Antarctica, which was developed with national funds at the GNSS station created in recent years, which was not brought from abroad and was much cheaper, and that they also had devices developed on this topic to be tested there.
Stating that they will try the energy storage system developed with national resources there, Özsoy emphasized that this system, which has been tested in extreme conditions and integrated into the world, is one of the important goals.
“We have entered a time where wearable technology is very important.”
Noting that three high school students in the team had developed an outfit, Prof. DR. Özsoy said: “They designed a coat. With this outfit they won first place in the TEKNOFEST competition. You will try this outfit in Antarctic conditions. They have placed sensors that can measure body temperature, heart rhythm and all human details on this coat. “We have entered a time where wearable technology is very important, whether in Antarctica, in Arctic conditions or in space conditions,” he said.
Explaining that one of the studies they will conduct this year will be on microplastics in the context of life sciences, Özsoy said: “We will also include scientific studies comparing North and South, such as comparing samples from the Arctic region with “Samples taken from the Antarctic region.” said.
Özsoy pointed out that the team will include four international researchers, two from Spain and one from the United States and Bulgaria, and that the Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey in Santiago will pay diplomatic visits with the Turkish scientific team at the beginning of the expedition.
Pointing out that a participant from TÜBİTAK Presidency of Science and Society (BİTO) was also part of the team, Özsoy said, “It is very important for us to introduce our studies carried out in extreme conditions such as Antarctica to society. Our researcher joins BİTO will convey our work to the society,” he said.
“The weather in Antarctica is very changeable”
The leader of the team, Prof. Dr. Ersan Başer, recalled that scientific research expeditions have been organized from Turkey to Antarctica since 2017.
Explaining that projects for this purpose were started a year before the expedition, Başer said, “The projects are evaluated by TÜBİTAK and the leaders of the projects deemed suitable go to Antarctica and participate in these scientific studies. The projects are very important for both our country and the world. We bring the data we received there to Turkey and “We evaluate them in laboratories. We contribute to the world of science through scientific publications,” he said.
Başer pointed out the difficulties in carrying out work in Antarctica and said:
“Working in the polar region is quite demanding. Wind, storm and weather conditions are very challenging for us. For this reason, we carry out a theoretical study for all participants before the trip. We then carry out a three-day practical training. Walking techniques in snow and ice, preserving life in snow, taking samples in snow and “We offer training on how to intervene in emergency situations. After this training, work takes place in the field. We accompany all participants as they work in the field.” Because the weather in Antarctica is very changeable. Storms and fog can appear suddenly. Safety is our number one rule.”
“The work on the poles and the work in space are very important.”
TÜBİTAK President Prof. Dr. Hasan Mandal held a video meeting with the scientific committee via the Internet before the expedition.
Mandal explained that he evaluated the studies at the poles and in space together and noted the importance of having a say in these areas.
Mandal said: “The work on the poles and in space is very important, both in terms of our own scientific mission, our country’s needs, interests and visibility, and in terms of creating solutions for humanity,” said.
“24 scientists participating in the expedition will work on 22 different projects”
Industry and Technology Minister Mehmet Fatih Kacır said in his post on his social media account: “Our scientists are heading to Antarctica again. Our scientists and researchers set off from Istanbul to take part in the 8th National Antarctic Scientific Expedition.” 20 “Of which there are Turks and four are foreigners.” “24 scientists participating in the expedition will work on 22 different projects.” he said.
Emphasizing that the students who won first place in the “High School Students Polar Research Projects Competition” organized by TÜBİTAK within the framework of TEKNOFEST will also have the opportunity to test their projects by participating in the expedition, Kacır said:
“With the national polar expeditions we have conducted since 2017, we have provided great opportunities for our scientists. We have organized ten scientific expeditions to Antarctica and the Arctic and enabled 116 Turkish scientists to conduct research in these regions, and we have achieved 252 scientific results.” The Turkish Science Research Center is to be established in Antarctica. Our work for the grassroots continues. Our goal is to position Turkey as a major member of the Antarctic Treaty System. Our country is strong and completely independent in all areas with space, satellite systems, national automobile, defense industry, Antarctic studies and other important projects of the National Technology Move. “It continues to move rapidly toward its goal of becoming one country.”