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Fridtjof Nansen: Drifting on the Ice

Fridtjof Nansen (pronounced "Freedyoff") (1861-1930) was a Norwegian explorer of the Arctic, an oceanographer, and a Nobel Peace Prize-winning humanitarian. He was the first to cross Greenland (1888) and prove that the interior was ice-covered; he proved the existence of a polar ocean current; and he got closer to the North Pole than anyone had been at that time (8614'N).

Nansen believed that an ocean current moved the ice cap across the Arctic Ocean from Siberia. To prove it, he sailed the Fram (a crush-resistant ship) north from Norway in June, 1893, froze it in the waters off Siberia in September, and then drifted northward - eventually arriving back at Norway by way of Spitsbergen (Svalbard) in September of 1896.

Picture: The Fram drifts on the ice.

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