U of M Researchers Growing Sea Ice to Study Climate Change

WINNIPEG — A new facility at the University of Manitoba will study how climate change affects sea ice that forms and melts on the surface of oceans.

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The $1.38 million Sea-ice Environmental Research Facility (SERF) officially opened Wednesday, and is the first of its kind in Canada. The large, outdoor, saltwater pond will be used by researchers to form sea ice for comparison with what occurs in the high Arctic. By growing the ice, scientists will better understand how sea ice forms and melts on polar oceans, and gain insight into the processes that regulate the exchange of molecules between the ocean and atmosphere.

The main feature of the SERF facility is an eight feet deep outdoor pool, spanning 60 feet long and 30 feet wide. A movable roof controls snow cover, and various sensors and instruments allow real-time monitoring.

The Manitoba government contributed $500,000 toward SERF.

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