Nanuq 2021
Photo : Peter Gallinelli

Conference and film at the Cerle de la voile de Grandson (March 4, 2022)

Non-contact Floristic Inventory (August 20, 2021)

In this short explanatory video, Gianluca Casagrande explains the flora inventories. These snapshots will serve as a reference for future observations to describe climate change in the Arctic...

Presentation ba Prof. Gianluca Gasagrande, expedition geograph (film by Dorothée Adam)

20,000 miles in the Arctic (August 16, 2021)

After 20,000 nautical miles in the waters of the Great North, equivalent in distance to a circumnavigation of the globe, Nanuq is back on the old continent for some maintenance work: painting of the deck and the hull, renovation of the jib and the saddlery in the saloon, overhaul of the engine, some interior painting, difficult, if not impossible to carry out in the Arctic...

... 'in fine' very little measured against the conditions encountered between 60 and 80° North latitude: winters with temperatures below -40°, winds of over 70 knots (hurricane force), countless gales, record speeds on the water of up to 20 knots, daily averages sometimes over 200 miles (400 km), voluntary and involuntary groundings, pack ice up to 2m thick, pack up to 9/10 ... and more than 5,000 person-days on board!

Since her launch in 2014, Nanuq has also been a floating laboratory, the tool for numerous scientific projects and collaborations, explorations in areas that have not yet been mapped, exceptional encounters with nature as well as with people, on board, on land, off the beaten track and at conferences, a human adventure and a book of memories without equal!

With these pages we would like to share a few selected moments, allow you to ‘come on board for a coffee break’ and give an overview of Nanuq's explorations throughout the past years projects : 2021 (Methane and CO2 mapping), Nanuq 2020 (The Blosseville coast inventory), News 2019... (no2no), News 2018... (Polarquest 2018), News 2017... (Greenland East Coast), News 2016... (Greenland West Coast), News winter 2016... (The passive igloo project II), News winter 2015... (The passive igloo project I), News 2015... (The voyage to Greenland), News 2014... (Depature and Scandinavia)

Have a good discovery and see you soon for new adventures!

Temperature and greenhouse gases (August 6, 2021)

In this 60 second video Daniel explains the link between temperature and Methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. The observations started in 2020 are completed during this season's expedition. Results will be available in the autumn. To be continued!

Presentation by Prof. Daniel McGinnis, aquatic physicist of the expedition (directed by Dorothée Adam)

Dublin, the great (August 4, 2021)

... or the return to civilisation.

Nanuq in Dublin, at the quay of the Irish capital's busy port (photo Mathilde Gallinelli)

After leaving Copenhagen and leaving the big cities in our wake in 2015 to explore and experience the vast uninhabited expanses of the Arctic regions for seven seasons, the return to civilisation is striking. Dublin, a major European city, is a reflection of economic opportunity and poverty at the same time.

While there are differences in the more remote areas, they are less striking, probably because these places naturally satisfy at least three basic needs: proximity to nature and water, which are sources of inspiration and life, and the possibility of a quality visual environment which satisfies the basic need for beauty, because even the simplest dwelling has a magnificent view...

While economic opportunities are certainly greater in the city, the inhabitants of small towns tell us straight out that their way of life is little affected by the crises of the big cities, whether social, economic or health-related.

Today, one out of every two people lives in a city and this proportion is set to increase; at the current rate, the urban population is expected to grow by 50% over the next 20 years, an immeasurable challenge in the light of the social, environmental and health challenges...

If the city is the key to economic and technological development, or at least its historical role, this model of cohabitation is perhaps reaching its limits; a model to be reviewed?

We are now waiting for the wind to shift to the west, under the passage of an Atlantic low. Departure is planned for the end of the day for a 300 mile crossing, heading for Brittany. See you soon!

Peter Gallinelli, Dublin 2021

Photogrammetric surveys on board Nanuq (July 30, 2021)

Here you will find the latest video explaining photogrammetric surveys carried out during the expedition 2020. Results are available on request as 3D models with a 5cm resolution...


Presentation ba Prof. Gianluca Gasagrande, expedition geograph (film by Dorothée Adam)

From Isafjordur to Torshavn (July 29, 2021)

The weather forecast makes us choose the route around the north of Iceland, along the Arctic Circle. This is also the most interesting route in terms of the daily methane and CO2 measurements made by our on-board scientist. But a scientific navigation is also a navigation in itself...

A persistent low-pressure system, to the SW of Iceland, gives us weather that is sometimes calm and sometimes windy with gale force winds. The crew is busy adjusting the sails. Nanuq is going full speed ahead!

Nanuq in the NW fjords of Iceland (photo Dolores Gonzalez)

After the Horn, a cape that marks the NW corner of Iceland, known for its breaking seas in case of gale, poor visibility and winter ice, we stop at Siglufjordur where we immerse ourselves in the history of herring, well presented in the excellent museum dedicated to this epoch. From the height of our 2021s, the living conditions of that not so distant era seem unthinkable.

The navigation is also punctuated by encounters with marine mammals and pelagic birds of all kinds, but also by charming human encounters such as our friends from Gaïa ( or the Örkin. We could stay here for weeks... but our sailing agenda is behind schedule due to quarantines and we have to catch up time to be in the Faroes in due time for the next crew change.

After a final stop in Siglufjordur to complete customs formalities, we set off on the 250 mile crossing to the Faroe Islands. No suitable weather is forecast for the next 5 days. So we set off with a strong southerly breeze which gradually turns SW and eases off, not too bad ... and finally gives way to a flat calm about 2/3 of the way. We finish our crossing with the engine. Somewhat frustrating!

Nanuq in Torshavn (photo Dolores Gonzalez)

The welcome in the Faroes, after a negative PCR test, is all the more warm. The last available place in the harbour is reserved for Nanuq who finds 20m of industrial dock at the shipyard, wedged between large trawlers. Our arrival coincides with the archipelago's national holidays. Colourful festivities bring together a population in their best traditional clothes, foot and oar races, specialities and magnificent local handicrafts.

National party in Torshavn (photos Dolores Gonzalez)

After a change of crew, we cast off. The route ahead is still long and full of uncertainties, not so much meteorological as related to the individual way of managing the COVID crisis of each government... our route passes through 5 different countries!

Story to follow... see you soon!

Nanuq CTD probe (July 24,2021)

During the voyage around Iceland and the crossing to the Faroe Islands, we are taking temperature and salinity profiles in the first 30 metres of the sea water column twice a day. These measurements complement the methane and CO2 samples. They are carried out using a CTD probe (meaning Conductivity, Temperature and Depth).

This probe was developed by Jonathan Selz and Peter Gallinelli on board Nanuq in the form of a DIY project built around a Raspberry PI microcomputer and Yoctopuce interfaces. Initially installed in an inconclusive sewer pipe, the current successful version is housed in a transparent polymer tube that is waterproof to 150m.

This base is upgradeable and allows the probe to be completed by adding other sensors: turbidity, photosynthesis, oxygen ... or even an on-board camera for underwater observation.

Temperature and salinity profile in Nansen Fjord, Greenland (credits Jonathan Selz)

If you are interested in this project, contact us here...

Tracking CH4 on board Nanuq (July 23, 2021)

60 seconds on the clock to explain mathane sampling carried out as part of the Nanuq2020 project...

Presented by Prof. Daniel McGinnis, aquatic physicist of the expédition (by Dorothée Adam)

CH4 - a powerful greenhouse gas (July 21, 2021)

Sampling in mountain lakes and glacier outlets, a team effort on land trips in the NW Iceland region. As methane and CO2 are dissolved gases in water and atmosphere, two samples are taken at the same time. The weather conditions at the time of sampling are also documented as well as the pH and alkalinity of the water. All these data are used to complete and explain the physical and biological phenomena related to methane and CO2 concentrations in the Arctic.

Caroline Guenat and Peter Gallinelli in the field, Iceland 2021 (photos P. Gallinelli and S. Longo)

Explorations and observations (July 18, 2021)

Precisely one year ago, despite a highly uncertain health context, Nanuq approached the coast of Iceland with a packed scientific agenda. Five illustrated video clips were made on this occasion. They report on the scientific activities during the expedition. Here is the first one; we will share the following ones in the coming weeks...

Presentation Nanuq2020 by Peter Gallinelli, expedition leader (clip arranged byDorothée Adam)

Getting ready for season 2021 (July 15, 2021)

That's it: we are on board Nanuq! The list of preparations is still long, between careening, sewing, re-commissioning and refuelling... days without night near the Arctic Circle which keep us busy during the compulsory confinement at the arrival in Iceland.

Isafjordur welcomes us with the necessary distance of confinement, but helps us to find solutions in all the problems of preparation of a sailing boat, or nearly.
A final PCR test finally frees us and we are off to the NW fjords. Once again the landscape is stunning and wild. It is an ideal environment to launch our boat, which has been sleeping for months, to test the equipment and to remind us of the basic manoeuvring and safety procedures. We are also setting up the sampling protocols that will accompany Nanuq during its crossing to Europe.
It doesn't take long to find our marks on board. After a week of overcast, windy and rainy weather, the sun welcomes us to our wild anchorage at the foot of the mountains still covered in snow that reach down to sea level.

Anchorage at the head of Hrafnsfjordur. The weather is not bad. During our last visit in 2020, violent gusts made any attempt to anchor pointless (photo Caroline Guenat)

Nanuq 2021 : monitoring greenhouse gases (July 2, 2021)

Carbon dioxide (CO2) and Methane (CH4) are the two most important carbon (C) based greenhouse gases. Monitoring these gas emissions and refining global budgets are key to predicting the development of global climate warming, especially in the sensitive Arctic region.

The Arctic oceans are both an important CO2 uptake region and an important source of atmospheric CH4. These critical data are lacking, however, which is why programs like Nanuq2021 are essential. These sailboats are green “floating laboritories” and allow scientists to collect key atmospheric and water quality data in areas that are hard to reach.

Monitoring CH4 and CO2 data and temperatures in the water column and atmospheric allow us to better understand the role of the Arctic in regulating the global environment, and how global warming will in-turn effect the Arctic regions.

Greenland, Blosseville coast (photo Ophelie Selz)

The ice and snow covering of polar regions reflect the sun’s heat. With rising temperatures, this ice and snow melts, allowing much more heat to be absorbed in the oceans and land. This is why the Arctic regions are the most sensitive to these climates changes. Indeed, global climatic perturbations contribute to accelerating the melting of the arctic ice and warming up the water. The warming in the Arctic region will likely release more trapped CH4 gas in the future, accelerating global warming. At the same time, changes in the ocean currents due to warming and meltwater will alter the ocean’s capacity to uptake CO2.

Despite the importance of this region, studies and in situ samplings are lacking. The peculiarity of the route of the Nanuq 2021 expedition is not only to make the Arctic zones accessible to scientists.

To observe this evolution and collect these data, Nanuq2021 joins forces with the Dept Forel, Faculty of Science at the University of Geneva in collaboration with Prof. Daniel McGinnis. Together, this team of sailors, explorers and scientists will collect water and air samples on GHG and complement them with O2 and temperature profiles and a collection of pH and Alkalinity data. This data will contribute to the scientific mapping of GHG in order to build decennial or multidecadal models of climate projection allowing scientists and politicians to make decisions on measures to understand and mitigate climate change and climate impacts.

By Caroline Guena, on-board scientist. / have a look at the planned route here...

Clean Mont Blanc (June 8, 2021)

As an extension of the Arctic plastic sampling initiated on board Nanuq in 2016, AQUALTI with a consortium of partners has just completed a tour of Mont Blanc, culminating in a summit ascent, to collect unique samples from 18 Alpine glaciers.

While the transport of plastics through the oceans is beginning to be well documented, their laboratory analysis, currently in progress, will provide a better understanding of atmospheric transport. As these are microscopic particles, their presence is practically invisible to the naked eye. Results are expected in a few months...

Deployment of a collection net in a glacier outlet, Mont Blanc massif (c) Nicolas Zimmermann | Frederic Gillet collecting microplastics at Mt. Blanc summit

CLEAN MONT BLANC is the result of a collaboration between AQUALTI, the University of Savoie Mont Blanc and the Summit Foundation, a project made possible thanks to the invaluable support of Scott Sports SA, Dolomite 1897, PICTURE ORGANIC CLOTHING, the Sauvain-Petitpierre Foundation, the Fondation Eau Neige et Glace, Gaznat SA and Petzl.

More information ... AQUALTI

Low impact science (May 24, 2021)

Low cost, low impact science for extreme environments

Curiosity has driven mankind to the highest peaks, the deepest ocean rifts and even into space. This attraction to go beyond the boundaries of the known has opened up opportunities to settle and prosper on every continent and to make human life possible where only wildlife exists.

If the high latitudes and more generally the polar regions have long resisted exploration, their discovery is due to the courage and determination of explorers, but is also closely linked to technological progress.

Historically, "the goal justifies the means" and all these expeditions have one point in common: they mobilise considerable amounts of resources and consequently have a non-negligible environmental impact.

In this respect, the first ascent of Mount Everest by Hillary and Norgay in 1953, with a team of 20 people and hundreds of porters, making intensive use of equipment and oxygen, is emblematic. It has become known as the "Himalayan style". Half a century later, mountaineers successfully climb the same peak in one day with ultra-light equipment and without oxygen, in the "Alpine style".

Technological progress is not slow in developing either. Whereas in the past scientific equipment was bulky and consumed a significant amounts of energy and resources, recent developments often allow for lightweight, robust, autonomous and smart solutions that can fit in a backpack or even a wristwatch.

These developments indicate that we are witnessing a real paradigm shift: quality science on board small ships is now not only possible but also complementary to traditional expeditions. It could provide innovative approaches to accessing new knowledge that conventional expeditions cannot, as such small budgets allow for more and longer campaigns.

On the same scale, the Astrolabe and Nanuq

Small sailing vessels [*] are now robust, safe, comfortable and self-reliant, and moreover, they are very agile. They are an efficient alternative or at least a very complementary means to conventional logistics in the field of polar sciences and, more generally, in exploration of remote or isolated ocean regions...

Read the full article here...

[*] sailing vessels < 25m LOA

Extract from P. Gallinelli[a], F. Gillet[b], Low-cost and low-disturbance science in extreme environments, GREAL reports, 2021

a Association Acapela (Geneva, Switzerland)
b NGO Aqualti (Chambery, France)

Agenda NANUQ 2021 (May 01, 2021)

The 2021 agenda is taking shape. Need to get away? Looking for adventure? The NANUQ 2021 project sets out to discover the islands of the North Atlantic. See the agenda here...

GREALtechnical report (April 23, 2021)

Publication of the GREAL technical report, a collection of articles from the Polarquest 2018 expedition on board NANUQ:

La Spedizione Polare di Salomon August Andrée e i suoi resoconti in Italia fra il 1896 e il 1930

Low-cost and low-disturbance science in extreme environments

The PolarquEEEst Experiment: Measurements of the Cosmic Muon Flux from 350 to 820 Latitude North

Generazione e analisi dell'indice di vegetazione normalizzato (NDVI) ricavato dai dati acquisiti tramite rilievo fotogrammetrico speditivo con UAV durante la
spedizione Polarquest2018 in prossimità di Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen, Svalbard

Arte e divulgazione della scienza. Curatela e progetto espositivo di una mostra per Polarquest2018

Comunicazione - Il racconto di un viaggio

Happy 2021 (December 24, 2020)

Alpine winter camp - testing a prototype wood stove (photo Kalle Schmidt)

The whole Nanuq team wishes you an excellent and adventurous year 2021 !!

The sound of ice (December 20, 2020)

A sound sample of the ice noise. Far from being silent and motionless, the world of ice is very much alive.

Make yourself comfortable, put on a headphone and relax....

Recording and photo : Kevin Monneron

NANUQ : documentary (December 16, 2020)

NANUQ, An Arctic Journey From Past to Future

90 years later in the Svalbarb archipelago, Nanuq, a special sailboat designed to be sustainable and passive, fueled by an unconditional love for knowledge, for progress, and for scientific research, crosses stretches of sea free of ice for the first time in decades following the journey of the Italia airship.

About the film

Length: 55 min

Director: Emanuele Licitra

Co-director: Paola Catapano

Production: Guia Invernizzi Cuminetti for Addictive Ideas

Involved TV Channel: Mediaset (RTI SpA)

Announcement : conference (Monday December 14, 2020)

The Nanuq 2020 Blosseville, Greenland costal inventory : A sailing expedition mapping Arctic regions, climate change and greenhouse gases.

This Monday, 14 December @ 13h – 14h : ZOOM

Methane sampling @ Nansen Fjord - Nanuq2020 - photo Ophelie Selz

Peter will present their team’s preliminary 2020 expedition report, and introduce their boat, the various interesting projects and activities, and life onboard Nanuq. I will show some (very) preliminary results from measurements Peter’s team collected for us. The Aquatic Physics group began a collaboration with Peter and his organization exploring the Arctic region performing mapping and measurements of the Arctic seas as well as exploring small coastal arctic ponds/and lakes. Some of these lakes are newly accessible due to increasingly ice-free waters. Among the many measurements performed by Peter’s team, we will add methane/CO2 measurements as well as temperature/salinity/oxygen monitoring.

Hope to see you there for a picturesque presentation and relaxing discussion. Please forward if I forgot someone.

Best regards, Daniel McGinnis

A geographical report - book (November 16, 2020

The Polarquest2018 Arctic expedition
A geographical report

"As any other good journey report, this one too begins by presenting the scientific rationale of the expedition in its geographical context, clearly stating the reasons for the presence of a geographer in the crew. Then comes the account, derived from the expedition logbook and from other texts written during the operations. Several scientific
activities – full-blown research work and methodological tests – are then presented and discussed, putting forth some relevant results of surveys and visits conducted in various
«points of interests» of the Svalbard Islands."

Gianluca Casagrande, Associate Professor of Geography at the European University of Rome and Scientific Director of the Geographic Research and Application Laboratory (GREAL), retraces the historical, scientific and georgraphical context of the Plarquest2018 expedition beyond Svalbard on board Nanuq.

Free access at the Italian Geographic Society

Mare Plasticum - The Plastic Sea (November 11, 2020)

Presented at the Genoa Science Festival 2020, this newly published book covers plenty of fascinating science, such as insights into the impacts of plastics and microplastics.

Mare Plasticum - a multidisciplinary approach to plastic pollution of the oceans, seas, and rivers and to potential sustainable solutions

"This book, written by a multidisciplinary team of authors comprising scientists, artists and communicators, explores one of the most pressing issues of our time – the menace plastics pose to marine environments and organisms. It takes readers on a journey that begins on the beaches of Galicia..." up to 82° of latitude north on board Nanuq during the Polarquest2018 expedition...

More information at Springer...

Announcement : Seminar - Master in Digital Earth and Smart Governance (October 26, 2020)

Blosseville coast as seen from Nanuq, waiting in the pack ice. Photo Kevin Monneron

NANUQ2020 Arctic Expedition - First comments and results


  • Institutional greetings by Carla Masetti, Director, Laboratorio Geocartografico “G. Caraci”, Università Roma Tre
  • Expedition’s geographical overview by Gianluca Casagrande, Scientific Director, GREAL, Università Europea di Roma
  • NANUQ2020 – A preliminary report by Peter Gallinelli, Expedition and Project Leader, NANUQ2020
  • An innovative probe for oceanographic research by Jonathan Selz, Onboard Scientist, NANUQ2020
  • Comments from the lab: a word on vascular plants observed by NANUQ2020 by Daniele Angeloni, Master in Digital Earth e Smart Governance, Università Roma Tre

ONLINE SEMINAR - Monday October 26th, 14.30 -

Memorial flag at the italian geographic society (October 19, 2020)

IGS flag at the Italian Geographical Society at Palazzetto Mattei, Rome, Italy, photo Gianluca Casagrande 2020

Polarquest2018-borne IGS flag in an illuminated display box at the headquarters of the Italian Geographical Society at Palazzetto Mattei, Rome, Italy. The flag is with the accompanying text and surrounded by historical navigational instruments from the Society's heritage. As you may recall, the flag was with us during the expedition and we signed it on the quay at Ny-Alesund. It has been on display since our return in September 2018 and it is still there.

"Ninety years after the polar flights of airship ITALIA, conducted under the aegis of the Italian Geographical Society in 1928, the Society institutionally and operationally participated in the Polarquest2018 Arctic research and communication expedition, onboard high-sustainability sailboat S/Y NANUQ. Equipped as a floating laboratory, the small yacht
-displacing 23 tonnes - travelled about 3500 nautical miles from Iceland to continental Norway reaching Greenland and circumnavigating Svalbard Islands between July 22nd and September 4th, 2018.

The international crew of 10 members developed a complex set of scientific activities and documentation on the geographical and environmental status of the visited sites. During the entire voyage this flag, signed by NANUQ's crew and by descendants of the crew of airship ITALIA, was onboard with the scientific equipment. It symbolically testified the Society's enduring mission and will to accompany and support scientific research and geographical culture, towards a better protection of our planet for future generations"

All the best!

Plastics at the end of the world (October 10, 2020)

Plastics (10cm debris) on the beach of Nansen Fjord on the east coast of Greenland 2020 ... terrible! Photos Kevin Monneron

Plastics visible to the naked eye are present in the remotest parts of the planet, transported by ocean currents. This is a terrible observation and it is no longer a novelty, alas ... but what about plastics transported by atmospheric currents? FLYING PLASTICS will try to answer this question. In collaboration with the NGO AQUALTI and the University of Mont-Blanc Savoie, the Nanuq team has taken part in the development of an innovative sampling protocol, to be followed...

Mantamaran 2.0, by AQUALTI 2020, photo Marie Raison 2020

Scientific Expedition NANUQ2020 (September 28, 2020)

The accont of th expedition can be found here
Additional and short messages have been published on

The 'playground'.

Source: . showing a typical depression off the coast of Ireland!

Scentific projects

Photogrammetry and digital terrain models
Botanical inventory (exploration)
Temperature and salinity profiles
3D digital model of rib sections
Methane abstraction from fresh water
Continuous monitoring of surface water temperatures

Surveys of the thermal sites could not be carried out due to the impossibility of visiting the areas of interest in 2020.

The crew

Peter Gallinelli: expedition leader and skipper
Thierry Selz: co-skipper, doctor
Gaël Frochaux: engineer, DST probe operator and paraglider pilot
Lisa Gallinelli Gonzalez: logistics, navigator and drone operator, psychologist

Dolores Gonzalez: logistics and navigation
Claudio Limacher: engineer, photo survey and instrument operator
Kevin Monneron: engineer, freediver, underwater recovery
Sophie Ruch: flora survey, drone and paraglider co-operator

Jonathan Selz: engineer, DST probe developer
Ophelie Selz: official expedition photographer and artist
Tamara Strasser: mountaineer, photographic survey and instrument operator

Ground team

Gianluca Casagrande: associate professor, geographer, European University of Rome and Geographical Society of Italy
Frederic Gillet: environmental engineer, scientific coordinator, Aqualti
Daniel F. McGinnis: Associate Professor, Aquatic Physics, F.A. Forel, University of Geneva
Dorothée Adam-Mazard: director, audiovisual productions of the expedition
Alessandro Prunesti: Senior Lecturer, European University of Rome, web developer

The partners

See the dedicated page...

The boat

NANUQ - Integral 60'- see the dedicated page...

Nanuq, waiting in the pack off the coast of Blosseville, August 2020. Photo Opelie Selz


  1. Bergen - Seydisfjordur (IS): route to the N to avoid a low-pressure system: 725 miles in 3.5 days
  2. Seydisfjordur - Greenland: including big detour to avoid extended ice fields: 565 miles
  3. Greenland - Isafjordur (IS): wanderings and zig-zags in and around the ice and back to Iceland: 435 miles

GPX file using GPXsee with OSM maps

Enjoy reading!

Overview expedition follw-up (September 15, 2020)

The following posts can be found on the original website maintained by Gianluca Casagrande and Alessandro Prunesti.

Please follow the links here below or go to the main portal at

August 16, 2020 :

August 15, 2020 :

August 12, 2020 :

August 12, 2020 :

August 10, 2020 :

August 9, 2020 :

August 8, 2020 :

August 7, 2020 :

August 6, 2020 :

August 5, 2020 :

August 4, 2020 :

August 1, 2020 :

August 1, 2020 :

July 30, 2020 :

July 29, 2020 :

July 29, 2020 :

July 28, 2020 :

July 29, 2020 :

July 28, 2020 :

July 27, 2020 :

July 26, 2020 :

July 25, 2020 :

July 25, 2020 :

That's it folks!

Heading towards Greenland (July 30, 2020)

Nanuq heading towards the Arctic circle, Langanes - NE tip of Iceland (photo Peter Gallinelli)

To all ouf you who follow Nanuq, the latest NEWS are now available on:

Wishing you a wonderful summertime

Crew Nanuq 2020

Nanuq 2020 : scientific project (June 08, 2020)







A scientific expedition to the east coast of Greenland : scientific agenda

Unique knowledge for environmental sciences, environmental conservation

Observations and sampling in a hostile environment combining glacial navigation, mountaineering, diving, advanced technologies and communication

Consortium of two non-profit associations and various academic partners : partners

Summer 2020 : agenda

Internet, animated notebooks (videos), publications, conferences, exhibitions

Nanuq anchored in Grivel Bukta, Blosseville coast, 2017 (photo: Gérard Baudraz)

Born from the collaboration of two non-profit associations, Nanuq 2020 is a scientific mission on the coast of Blosseville, on the east coast of Greenland, scheduled for the end of July 2020.

The objective of this expedition will be to collect and document samples of micro- and nano-plastics near the Greenland coast.

At the same time, and in anticipation of future climate change, we are taking advantage of our presence in the field to take a 'snapshot' of the coastline by creating a 3D digital model using innovative technology and a biological inventory.

The documentation of terrestrial and marine thermal springs in the sector will open up new perspectives for research projects in the future.

Based on a sailing boat with a low ecological impact, the means implemented for this mission will be as respectful as possible of the places visited and will be part of a 'solutions for sustainable development' approach.

More to come, keep in touch ... or get involved!

2020 - Covid & Imaqa (April 21, 2020)

This unmapped territory that we cross reminds us that we always need plans B and C ... when all goes well we tend to forget it. We navigate by sight and this way of progressing is reminiscent of glacial navigation: from a distance it looks blocked and it is only when we get closer that we eventually see a free passage; it can open at the last moment and even close in again for good.

To describe this reality, the Greenlandic language has the word 'imaqa' ... it is not our 'maybe' but rather 'it will happen when conditions permit', a state of mind whose wisdom we have long since forgotten.

If initially we were to convoy Nanuq to Iceland in early spring, travel to Norway is interrupted until further notice and the future remains uncertain. In any case, ship and crew are ready and eagerly await the deconfinement and the best opportunity to cast off for Nanuq2020.

2020 is also an exceptional year in terms of ice; the extent around Svalbard this year is significantly higher than the average of 1981-2010 and has even approached a maximum over the same period. It is at this stage very difficult to predict what the implications will be for the Nanuq 2020 season, except that the East Greenland Current will be affected. However, this does not detract from the overall trend towards a continued decrease in the Arctic ice cap, as the following graph reminds us.

Graph: extent around Svalbard (source :

Graph: Extent of the entire Arctic (source

Keep in touch! Keep healthy!

Translated with (free version)

Nanuq 2020 mission patch (March 1, 2020)

to come ...

News : older articles ... 2019 (archive)



peter.gallinelli & all - July 2021