With icy glaciers and reindeer around them and the sun not likely to set for next few months, Indian scientists find themselves in “seventh heaven” at India’s first research station in the Arctic.
“We feel like we are on seventh heaven after becoming the 10th country to have a station on the most northerly research station at 80 degree latitude. The North pole is at 90 degrees latitude, only 1200km away,” said Rasik Ravindra, the director of the National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research.
Union Minister of Science and Technology Kapil Sibal had inaugurated the Indian research base in the Arctic region to be called Himadri.
The station is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and will conduct round the year scientific research in contemporary fields of Arctic Science with special emphasis on climate change.
“We would do complementary bi-polar science, repeating research and experiments we have done in Antarctica matching data and experiments in both hemispheres,” he said.
“The Koreans, Chinese, Dutch, Japanese, Norwegians, Swedish, French, British and Germans already stationed here were very happy to have Indian presence in the Arctic,” said Ravindra. “There is no problem of food. We get rice, salad, rajma.”
Himadri will be managed by the National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research (NCAOR), the premier polar institute based in Goa.