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U.S. Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security

The U.S. Coast Guard provides logistical support to science in both the Arctic and the Antarctic, operating a fleet of three icebreakers. The Polar Sea and Polar Star, two vessels of 1970's vintage, have long maintained the lifeline of the U.S. Antarctic Program by annually breaking a channel through the ice-covered McMurdo Sound to allow cargo and fuel to be brought into the National Science Foundation's logistics hub at McMurdo Station. The polar class icbereakers also carried out a variety of other missions, from science support to assisting in enforcement of the provisions of the Antarctic Treaty. The Healy, the Coast Guard's newest and most technologically advanced polar icebreaker, is designed to conduct a wide range of research activities, primarily in the Arctic.

For more on USCGC Healy, see http://www.uscg.mil/pacarea/healy/
For other polar class icebreakers, see http://www.uscg.mil/datasheet/icepolr.asp

Read the Captain's Journals from the USCGC Healy's Extended Continental Shelf Cruise to the Arctic

9/6/2008 Read the journals--accompanied by photographs--of Capt. Fred Sommer, the commanding officer of the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Healy. More

Healy Sails to Begin Arctic Science Cruises Studying Walruses and the Bering Sea Ecosystem

3/5/2008 The nationā€™s largest icebreaker, USCGC Healy, left its home port of Seattle on March 6 to begin six months of scientific deployments in the Arctic studying the Bering Sea ecosystem. More

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