Oden Antarctic Expedition 08

What Are They Doing?

The scientific objectives of the cruise aboard the Swedish icebreaker Oden included collecting a range of data in rarely traveled areas of the Antarctic seas and coastline, including the Amundsen and eastern Ross Seas. An international research team studied the oceanography and biogeochemistry of the region while in transit to Antarctica, with a particular emphasis on the processes that control the production and destruction of greenhouse gases and on the role of sea ice microorganisms in this process. These studies added to our limited knowledge of these remote corners of the Antarctic Seas and allowed future researchers to expand their monitoring efforts in these regions.

Where Are They?

Mr. Peneston boarded the Swedish Icebreaker Oden in Montevideo, Uruguay. From there, the team traveled south down the eastern shoreline of South America. After rounding the tip of South America, the Oden crossed the Southern Ocean to McMurdo Station, Antarctica, the largest research station in Antarctica.

Expedition Map


Honey, I’m Home! The trip home started with the check in and pre-flight weigh-in to make sure that my luggage did not exceed 75 pounds.  We all were required to wear our special ECW (extreme cold weather) clothing on the military flight from McMurdo Station to New Zealand and we then crammed our change of clothing, computers and other carry-on stuff into the orange ECW bag.  After our 8-hour, cold and noisy flight in the Hercules C-130 cargo plane we arrived in Christchurch New Zealand where I learned that for some reason I had not been booked on any commercial flights to get home.  The...
Exploring McMurdo For me, the reoccurring theme of this 2 month adventure has been, "Just when you thought it could not get better….”.  As we walked off the Oden on Jan 12 we were told that our flight home would be delayed for one more day and we would not leave until the 14th.  This meant that we had an extra day to explore the historic and interesting area around McMurdo.  Our first stop was our dorm room.  Although I was suddenly sharing a room with 4 others, the beds were fine and the food was great.  On our first evening we had a chance to tour Scott’s Discovery Hut which was built over...
Are We There Yet?As much as I have enjoyed every minute of this expedition and I am already starting to miss some of the great people I have become friends with on the Oden, the last mile to McMurdo has taken us over 24 hours. The Oden has been cutting a channel through 3-meter thick sea ice and it has been slow going. We have been able to see the buildings for 2 days and this morning as we prepared to leave by helicopter, we are only about 200 meters from the ice pier. The decision was made to keep us on the ship until 2pm and skip the helicopter because by then we will be able to walk...
McMurdo Sound Ice StationAs we approached Ross Island at the far western edge of the Ross Sea Polynya, we were greeted by amazing views of the 4 volcanic peaks of Ross Island. This was the first real land we had seen in over a month and it marked the beginning of our last week on the Oden. After 12 hours of icebreaking we established our last and longest sea ice station where we stayed for over 2 days. During that time all of the science teams worked to collect and analyze their last samples. It was also my last chance to go out on the ice with the seal research team. This time I was...
Note: We are running a few days behind with these journals due to communications issues with the Oden. Thank you for your patience. Oden News Flash! Before we get to today's topics I need to make a few announcements.... Mark Your Calendars and Register for this week's Live From IPY Webinar from the Oden. Go to the PolarTREC.com homepage and sign-up to participate in the one hour live event that will start at 1pm Eastern time this Wednesday, January 7th. I created a document that helps teachers understand how to prepare their classes for a webinar and it is posted on my Dec 13th journal. 2...

Expedition Resources

Project Information

25 November 2008 to 12 January 2009
Location: Southern Oceans, Antarctica
Project Funded Title: International Expedition to Antarctica aboard the Icebreaker Oden ‘08

Meet the Team

Jeff Peneston's picture
Liverpool High School
Liverpool, NY
United States

Jeff Peneston can walk or snowshoe out his back door into the forest and lakes of Camp Talooli, a children’s camp that he has helped his wife direct for 24 years. Each school day he leaves his forested home to teach Earth Science at Liverpool High School, just North of Syracuse, New York. Mr. Peneston has been teaching for 22 years and his passion has been to find ways to bring his students out into the natural world where they can learn to solve authentic problems. In 2000 he helped create the Expedition Earth Science program and each year he leads groups of students to locations around Upstate New York where they can act as field scientists for a day or a weekend. Mr. Peneston believes what one of his students once told him, “Real science begins where the classroom ends!” Mr. Peneston will be joining a team of international scientists on the Oden icebreaker.

Tish Yager's picture
University of Georgia
Athens, GA
United States

Dr. Patricia (Tish) Yager is an associate professor in marine sciences at the University of Georgia. Her expertise includes biological and chemical oceanography, marine microbial ecology and biogeochemistry. Her research focuses on the feedbacks between climate change and marine ecosystems. Her field research combines microbial ecology and community structure with inorganic carbon chemistry. She has spent several seasons working in Antarctica, and also studies microbial communities in the Amazon River. For the project in Barrow, Alaska, Tish will be the lead-PI responsible for project oversight, coordination, and synthesis. To learn more about Dr. Yager, please visit her [faculty biography page](http://www.marsci.uga.edu/directory/pyager.htm).