The goal of the ACE Project is to offer to international teams of distinguished scientists an outstanding and unique opportunity to study the marine and terrestrial environment of the sub-Antarctic ecosystem, based on the following components :
A round trip of Antarctica in a single expedition (see Annex 1 Travel plan) of a 3 – month duration. Project teams can participate in the whole expedition or only in one or two of the scheduled legs. Please see the Travel plan set out in Annex 1 (“Travel plan”), which shows the anticipated route along with a tentative time line for the three month expedition, including proposed timing for island landings and cruising timelines between the islands. It should be noted that this map is purely provisional and will be adjusted, within the time frame, as required in light of the selected scientific projects.
A polar vessel proposed by the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute of St Petersburg will be made available for the Project, offering research labs and other facilities such as helicopters and other means of transport (see Annex 2 Vessel description and research facilities).
A high level International Panel composed of distinguished scientific experts from polar institutions located in ACE partner countries including South Africa, Australia, Norway, the United Kingdom, France, Switzerland and the Russian Federation, with participation by external experts, will be established. The Panel will play a strategic role in selecting the scientific projects that will participate in the ACE project;
Two kinds of projects are expected: 1) Projects which are going to use the vessel and the research platform without any requested funding; and 2) Projects which require additional funding. For the latter, funding will be provided by a sponsor with anticipated grant levels of up to 200 thousand Euros per project