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Notes from the Field

College Student’s Arctic Impressions

March 17th, 2011 by MIDN Eric Brugler

March 11, 2011

Eric Brugler is First Class Midshipmen who is an honors Oceanography major at the United States Naval Academy. He is interested in the polar regions of Earth because he believes they play a very important role to the Earth’s climate system.

My research is focused primarily on sea ice and using airborne measurements to infer sea ice thickness over an area of the Arctic. If only the person sitting in the window seat knew that, maybe he would have understood why I kept leaning over him to get a look out the window.

Stepping off the plane was a shock in itself, all the moisture in my nose immediately froze! The highlight of my first day was definitely getting my “Arctic gear;” so now when I walk to the chow hall, at least I won’t be shivering the whole way. In all seriousness, the gear they issue to us upon arrival is really a lifesaver; the temperatures get to 50 below zero on some days. Having this gear will make the stay much more comfortable.

Our first flight in the P-3B aircraft, NASA’s scientific data collecting plane, won’t happen before Tuesday [March 15], so everyone is anxiously awaiting to finally get airborne and look at areas in the Arctic that are changing quite rapidly. Understanding the change happening in the Arctic is very important because the poles serve as harbingers for the Earth’s climate system.  Basically this means that the poles give insight into what changes will happen around the world before any other place on earth. Being able to come to the Arctic and study this first hand is quite humbling since I am only a senior in college. However, I think that having firsthand experience will enhance my future studies as I continue to delve further into polar science.


4 Responses to “College Student’s Arctic Impressions”

  1. Sucharit.Markanday says:

    Great Eric – keep up the philosophy and spirit wish you inspire more students who would go through the requisite hard ship first hand to appreciate the science!!!!
    Good Luck and God bless You.

  2. menul says:

    I’m very appreciate your Research, Eric. It’s important to measured because we can know and records the global warming effects. I’m sory for bad english

  3. saulo says:

    Voces são heróis que todos admiram . Obrigado por voces existem ! Obrigado!

  4. saulo says:

    Obrigado por voces existirem! São heróis que devemo0s honrar