August 2011 AXCTD-Buoy Launch from USCG Beaufort Sea Flight
Beginning in spring 2000, an international research team supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) has conducted annual expeditions each April to the North Pole to take the pulse of the Arctic Ocean and learn how the world's northernmost sea helps regulate global climate. The team establishes a group of un-manned scientific platforms, collectively called an observatory, to record data throughout the remainder of the year on everything from the salinity of the water to the thickness and temperature of the ice cover.
The North Pole Environmental Observatory gives NSF's Office of Polar Programs a scientific presence at both Poles. The U.S. Antarctic Program operates three stations year-round in Antarctica, including Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station. Final NPEO data are permanently archived at Arctic System Science (ARCSS) Data Archive at NCAR/EOL. These data plus certain preliminary data sets may be obtained via FTP at this website.