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Bremerhaven, Germany

The Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research is located in Bremerhaven, Germany, and a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. It conducts research in the Arctic, in the Antarctic and in the high and mid latitude oceans. Additional research topics are: North Sea research, marine biological monitoring and technical marine developments. The institute was founded in 1980 and is named after meteorologist, climatologist and geologist Alfred Wegener. Wikipedia.

Smetacek V.,Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research | Zingone A.,Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn
Nature | Year: 2013

Sudden beaching of huge seaweed masses smother the coastline and form rotting piles on the shore. The number of reports of these events in previously unaffected areas has increased worldwide in recent years. These 'seaweed tides' can harm tourism-based economies, smother aquaculture operations or disrupt traditional artisanal fisheries. Coastal eutrophication is the obvious, ultimate explanation for the increase in seaweed biomass, but the proximate processes that are responsible for individual beaching events are complex and require dedicated study to develop effective mitigation strategies. Harvesting the macroalgae, a valuable raw material, before they beach could well be developed into an effective solution. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source

Portner H.-O.,Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research
Marine Ecology Progress Series | Year: 2012

Climate change effects on marine ecosystems involve various stressors, pre dominantly temperature, hypoxia and CO2, all of which may combine with further anthropogenic stressors such as pollutants. All life forms respond to these drivers, following potentially common principles, which are insufficiently understood. Specific understanding may be most advanced in animals where the concept of 'oxygen and capacity dependent thermal tolerance' (OCLTT) is an integrator of various effects, linking molecular to ecosystem levels of biological organisation. Recent studies confirm OCLTT involvement in the field, causing changes in species abundance, biogeographical ranges, phenology and species predominance. At the whole-animal level, performance capacity set by aerobic scope and energy budget, building on baseline energy turnover, links fitness (within a thermal window) and functioning at the ecosystem level. In variable environments like the intertidal zone, animals also exploit their capacity for passive tolerance. While presently the temperature signal appears predominant in the field, effects may well involve other stressors, acting synergistically by narrowing the aerobic OCLTT window. Recent findings support the OCLTT concept as a common physiological basis linking apparently disjunct effects of ocean warming, acidification and hypoxia in a so-called climate syndrome. In brief, warming-induced CO2 accumulation in body fluids links to the effects of ocean acidification mediated by the weak acid distribution of CO2. Temperature-induced hypoxemia links to the hypoxia sensitivity of thermal tolerance. Future work will need to develop proxies for the temperature-dependent effects of climate-related stressors and also identify the principles operative in organisms other than animals and their underlying mechanisms. Mechanism-based modelling efforts are then needed to develop reliable organism to ecosystem projections of future change. © Inter-Research 2012. Source

A bacterial mixture usable in an inoculum usable in a bioremediateion method for accelerated biological degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in a sea ice-covered polar region includes a plurality of isolated cold-adapted autochthonous bacterial strains. Each of the bacterial strains has petroleum hydrocarbons degrading activity at an ambient temperature of 3 C. and each has a different temperature tolerance range, a different salinity tolerance range, a different petroleum hydrocarbons degradation spectrum, and a different capacity to emulsify oil.

Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research | Date: 2012-09-14

A method for automated real-time acquisition of a marine mammal in a natural body of water in the surroundings of a vessel includes detecting a thermal signature of the marine mammal is detected by imaging thermographic scanning of a water surface with an infrared camera system so as to generate an image data stream of consecutive images. A modular processing of the image data stream is performed including performing an image pre-processing, detecting local changes in contrast in the images, classifying the detected local changes in contrast so as to detect a pattern of the thermal signature of the marine mammal, localizing the classified thermal signature of the marine mammal, verifying the classified, localized thermal signature of the marine mammal and documenting the classified, localized and verified thermal signature of the marine mammal.

Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research | Date: 2010-12-10

A device for using technical equipment underwater includes at least one guide rail configured to extend vertically underwater on an edifice from above a waterline. At least one device carriage is provided and includes a basic unit having a reception flange configured to couple the technical equipment thereto, and at least one running unit that abuts against the guide rail via guide rollers. A press-on unit is disposed on a first side of the device carriage and includes a lever pivotable on an axis of the device carriage so as to generate a pressing force of the device carriage against the guide rail. The lever includes a support roller at a first end and a weight packet at a second end so as to exert a downward drifting force underwater that is greater than a buoyancy of the device carriage. At least two spacers are each disposed at a first end on the at least one device carriage and abutting the edifice at a second end. A veering and hoisting device is detachably connectable with the device carriage via a coupling device, and is configured to control deployment and retrieval of the device carriage.

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