Italian Navy’s multi-purpose research vessel ITS Alliance is set to return to its homeport in La Spezia, Italy, on April 6, concluding a 79-day mission in waters off Iceland and Greenland.
Alliance’s mission was to support a project carried out under the custody of NATO’s Center for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE) and led by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).
The Iceland-Greenland Seas Project (IGP) is the name given to the scientific project, a multi-disciplinary program to study the air-sea interaction and associated ventilation of dense water in a marginal ice zone. These phenomena occur during cold-air outbreaks, which significantly influence the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC).
The vessel got underway on January 17 and stopped in Reykjavik to embark an international team of scientists from eleven different research institutions and coordinated by the historical U.S. Institute, which has dedicated more than 80 years to research and education in the advancement and understanding of the ocean and its interaction with the earth system.
During the mission, ITS Alliance was commanded by Italian Navy frigate captain Daniele Cantù and operated by a crew of 47 sailors. The ship was home to 22 scientists from different international organizations during the mission.
The 93 meters long Alliance is used for underwater research and experiments in all oceans, including the polar margins of the North Atlantic. Fitted with 400 square meters of laboratory space, Alliance features extensive and sophisticated navigation, communications and computer equipment.