ROICE 2016 Expedition Objectives

The Scientific Governmental Expedition in Antarctica ROICE 2016 has continued the main objectives of the ROICE 2015 expedition.

The ROICE Expedition Objectives:

1.Implementing the bilateral agreement for scientific collaboration with Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI), through the expedition in Antarctica

The scientific community interested in learning, valorisation and making use of the full scientific potential of Antarctica, has realized that whatever the degree of development, the equipment etc., only through a unified approach in research and open international collaboration, can it give answers to the major questions concerning all processes in Antarctica and the Arctic, to their influence on the whole planetary system and, based on the results of this research, can predict the future of our planet.

The implementation of the agreement began with the development of the research plan of the ROICE 2015 team and it was developed with the research plan of ROICE 2016 team, in cooperation with Korean researchers and in concordance with the Korean Antarctic Research Program (KARP).

The research activity which was carried out during the two ROICE 2015 and ROICE 2016 expeditions of the Romanian expeditionists together with the researchers from the host station and the subsequent, had an important role contributing to the notable results that led to the conclusion that the partnership between the two institutes takes place in an exemplary way.

The expedition to Antarctica of the first ROICE team, to the KOPRI King Sejong Station, has represented the cornerstone in the implementation of the agreement, as well as in the extension of its cover to the Arctic area.

The continuation of the research activity by ROICE 2016 expedition team in Antarctica was much more productive, considering that the mapping of the basic elements to perform the sampling on the field were achieved in the previous expedition, the sampling was done with higher accuracy.

2.The development of the Romanian research direction in Antarctica, initiated in the first expedition

Through a modern approach, in keeping with the international directions, INCDSB would like to continue on the path started by the savant Emil Racoviţă and affirm itself both nationally and internationally, through a solid research focused mainly on the microbiology of polar habitats.

Preliminary research will be carried out in the western part of Antarctica, together with KOPRI partners.

Appreciating the research of the Romanian expeditionary predecessors in the Arctic and Antarctic, based on their experience and their scientific results, and considering the interest manifested by the research entities of internal and international notoriety, from Romania, specializing in adjacent fields, (life sciences, geonomic sciences, physical sciences – oceanography etc.), INCDSB aims to become a leader in defining a coherent research foundation, based on internationally recognized scientific results.

The results of ROICE 2015 and ROICE 2016 expeditions can be considered the beginning of this goal for INCDSB.

3.Collecting relevant data for the implementation of future research projects (national and/or international) in this direction

During the ROICE expeditions different Antarctic habitats are targeted, the communities of microorganisms associated with these representing models for both the reconstruction and decipheration of the mechanisms of adaptation to extreme environmental conditions, as well as a rich source of microbial and biomolecular species, which, due to their special characteristics, constitute an important research basis in a wide range of bionanotechnologies.

In the field the travel was and will be improved to increase the efficiency of sampling. At the same time, biological sampling techniques from different environments (soil, snow, ice, sub-glacial water etc.) have been continuously optimized and the physico-chemical conditions specific to these ecosystems have been and will be recorded.

The effects and behaviour of the expeditionists in extreme conditions has been and will be a follow for future expeditions in order to be predictable and reduced in extreme conditions.

The experience gained by the team members, following the ROICE expedition, will constitute an important source of information for future expeditions to Antarctica.

The biological material collected has constituted the basis of interdisciplinary researches following displacement in the infrastructure of the INCDSB, in which have been and will be encouraged the collaborations with partners from the country and abroad.