HMS Protector recently undertook a mission to Antarctica, hosting two researchers from the University of Portsmouth, say the Royal Navy.

The mission, which commenced from the Falkland Islands and navigated along the Antarctic Peninsula’s western edge, aimed at studying the impacts of increasing tourism and climate change on the continent.

Professor Fay Couceiro and Dr. Clare Boston embarked on this journey to collect water and rock samples. Professor Couceiro’s water samples, sourced from various locations including the Falkland Islands, Anvers Island, and Rothera Research Station, are to be examined for microplastics, metals, and nutrients to gauge human influence on the Antarctic ecosystem.

Dr. Boston’s study looked at historical glacial advances and involved collecting data on landforms dating back to the last Ice Age. During its mission, HMS Protector charted over 1,000 square miles of seabed, providing vital data to enhance maritime safety in the region, reflecting a notable increase in maritime traffic. This data is set to be incorporated into the UK Hydrographic Office’s navigational resources.

Additionally, the mission supported the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT) by delivering essential materials to Port Lockroy for the conservation of historic structures. Unique experiences, such as witnessing wildlife and engaging in paddleboarding activities, added a distinct dimension to the expedition.

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago

Clearly, a very good investment undertaking worthwhile projects in very harsh conditions.

Hats off to the crew and all who participated in this voyage to Antarctica.