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Swedish Research Submarine Lost Under Doomsday Glacier

Swedish Research Submarine Goes MIA Under Doomsday Glacier

Hello there to all my expats buddies in Sweden, grab your cup of coffee and let me share with you a piece of news circulating in the Swedish media.

A Needle in a Haystack

A submarine, Ran, owned by Gothenburg University, has reportedly gone missing under a glacier in Antarctica. This unmanned underwater vehicle isn’t just any regular submarine – it’s one of three in the world dedicated to researching and understanding glaciers. “It’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack, but we don’t even know where the haystack is,” says Anna Wåhlin, project leader and professor at Gothenburg University.

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Don’t drop your coffee cup, but the glacier in question is known as the Thwaites Glacier or more ominously as – ‘The Doomsday Glacier.’ Yep, you heard that right!

Ran – The Lost Champion

This seven-meter-long submarine has been an integral part of many Antarctic expeditions, often diving under 200-500 meters thick ice, gathering invaluable data for global scientific research. For those of generous-hearted nature, worry not, Ran does not have any crews on board, operating purely on pre-sequenced missions under the ice.

“The data we receive from Ran is unparalleled and highly valuable for international research,” says Anna Wåhlin.

Unforeseen Trouble

However, something went awry in its last dive. Our marine hero didn’t resurface at the preprogrammed rendezvous point, leading to extensive search operations. Unfortunately, with no success finding it, the research team is now seeking a replacement.

A Symbol of Investment in Science

For the intrigued folks, Ran has been in operation for five years, and was purchased in 2015 with SEK 38 million, generously funded by Knut and Alice Wallenberg’s Foundation. This highlights the significant investments made to boost the scope and effectiveness of scientific research in Sweden.

Sign Off

My expat pals, remember, Ran is a great illustration of the high value Sweden places on global environmental research and awareness. Each time we pass by the University of Gothenburg, let’s tip our hats in respect to their ongoing efforts in trying to understand our dear Earth better. Rest well, Ran. You did your job gracefully, and your contribution will not be forgotten.

As with many of life’s unexpected hiccups, let’s wait out the storm and hope to see Ran found or a worthy successor to carry on its legacy. Until next time, stay curious, stay informed!

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