In search of an explanation for some of the greenest waters ever seen in coastal Antarctica and their possible link to some of the fastest melting glaciers and declining summer sea ice, the Amundsen Sea Polynya International Research Expedition (ASPIRE) challenged the capabilities of the US Antarctic Program and RVIB Nathaniel B. Palmer during Austral summer 2010–2011. We were well rewarded by both an extraordinary research platform and a truly remarkable oceanic setting. Here we provide further insights into the key questions that motivated our sampling approach during ASPIRE and present some preliminary findings, while highlighting the value of the Palmer for accomplishing complex, multifaceted oceanographic research in such a challenging environment.
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