It is the 13th Chinese scientific expedition to the Arctic Ocean, and it is also the fourth time that China's self-built new icebreaker Xuelong-2 has traveled to the Arctic region.
On July 12, the ship left Shanghai. On August 17, it broke through sea ice at 84°N. Overall, specialists from the Polar Research Institute of China intend to cover 15,500 nautical miles as part of their research trip.
The expedition is conducted by the Chinese Ministry of Natural Resources together with the Polar Institute. Besides, Chinese experts closely cooperate with their colleagues from Russia and Thailand.
Studying the geology and geophysics of the Gakkel Ridge is one of its key aims. On top of that, scientists will research the atmosphere, sea ice, marine and subsurface environment, as well as conduct studies on biomes and pollutants. Collecting genetic samples from the region is also an important task, Wang Jinhui, head of the expedition team said.
The icebreaker is scheduled to return to Shanghai at the end of September.