LTER HAUSGARTEN 2018 - Long-Term Ecological Research in the Fram Strait, Cruise No. MSM77, September 15 - October 13, 2018, Longyearbyen (Svalbard) - Edinburgh (Scotland) (English)

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The 77th cruise of the RV MARIA S. MERIAN contributed to various large national and international research and infrastructure projects (FRAM, ARCHES, INTAROS, ICOS, SIOS) as well as to the research programme PACES-II (Polar Regions and Coasts in the changing Earth System) of the Alfred-Wegener-Institute Helmholtz-Center for Polar and Marine Research (AWI). Investigations within Work Package 4 (Arctic sea ice and its interaction with ocean and ecosystems) of the PACES-II programme, aim at assessing and quantifying ecosystem changes from surface waters to the deep ocean in response to the retreating sea ice, and at exploring the most important (feedback) processes determining temporal and spatial variability. Contributions to the PACES-II Work Package 6 (Large scale variability and change in polar benthic biota and ecosystem functions) include the identification of spatial patterns and temporal trends in relevant benthic community functions, and the development of a comprehensive science community reference collection of observational data. Work carried out within WPs 4 and 6 will support the time-series studies at the LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) observatory HAUSGARTEN (Fig. 1.1), where we document Global Change induced environmental variations on a polar deep-water ecosystem. This work is carried out in close co-operation between the HGF-MPG Joint Research Group on Deep-Sea Ecology and Technology and the PEBCAO Group (Phytoplankton Ecology and Biogeochemistry in the Changing Arctic Ocean) at AWI as well as the working group Microbial Geochemistry at the GEOMAR and the HGF Young Investigators Group SEAPUMP (Seasonal and regional food web interactions with the biological pump).