Researchers aboard NASA's P-3 research aircraft left the agency’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Va., March 10 for Greenland to begin a new season of collecting data on Arctic land and sea ice.
The mission, known as Operation IceBridge, is to gather data on changes to polar ice and maintain continuity of measurements between NASA's Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) missions. The original ICESat mission ended in 2009, and its successor, ICESat-2, is scheduled for launch in 2017.
By flying yearly campaigns, IceBridge provides valuable data on rapidly changing areas of polar land and sea ice. Flights run through May 23 from Thule Air Base and Kangerlussuaq, Greenland, with a weeklong deployment to Fairbanks, Alaska.
Image courtesy of NASA/Patrick Black.