SEP 28, 2016 04:30 AM PDT

Operation IceBridge Gets a Lift


Each year, scientists, researchers and pilots from NASA complete a survey of ice in Greenland and sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. It's called Operation IceBridge and the mission is about measure ice levels and check on climate change. By keeping a record of ice levels and water flow, scientists can use the data to develop plans to keep habitats from being destroyed.

This year the mission had the use of a different aircraft. The P-3 is the plane of choice, but NASA's P-3 is in the shop. They were able to borrow another aircraft from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Hurricane Hunter fleet of planes, a P-3 Orion, named Miss Piggy. Miss Piggy is normally used in hurricane monitoring missions in much warmer climes, but she was able to meet the challenge of OIB. Measurements of almost the entire western Arctic Basin were made as well detailed inspections of the glaciers and ice sheets in Greenland. While the NASA crew may have had some mechanical issues, their fellow environmental scientists at NOAA had their backs.
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