Tara expedition

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The schooner TARA (Port Lay, Île de Groix, 2009).jpg
Schooner Tara.
Career French Ensign
Name: Antarctica
then Seamaster
currently Tara
Builder: SFCN Villeneuve-la-Garenne
In service: 1989
Homeport: Lorient, France
General characteristics
Type: Ketch
Displacement: 130 t (128 long tons)
Length: 36 m (118 ft)

The Tara Expedition is a research expedition through the ice of the Arctic. The polar schooner Tara was to drift in the ice for approximately two years from its departure, late in August 2006. In the community of oceanography it is met with great interest especially in the context of the International Polar Year (2007–2008). This expedition, dubbed Tara Arctic, ended on February 23rd 2008. It was part of the international DAMOCLES (Developing Arctic Modelling and Observing Capabilities for Long-term Environmental Studies) program.

Schooner Tara in Brest Harbour.

You can look at the drift of Tara in Google Earth, and even compare it to forecasts available for its drift. You can also compare it with some of the previous ice drift expeditions through the arctic ice (Fram by Norwegian explorers Fridtjof Nansen, Otto Sverdrup, Oscar Wisting, and Roald Amundsen between 1893 and 1896 as the first one).

In 2009, Tara started on a new expedition. It will travel around the world until 2012 to study CO2 capture by marine microorganisms such as plankton. The costs for the expedition are 3 million euros per year, all from private funds.

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