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From early autumn to late spring every year Antarctica’s sea ice almost doubles the size of the continent!

This means though that Argo Floats in this area get caught under the ice. If they hit or rub up against floating ice they can be damaged or destroyed.
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So they avoid ice (sounds like a good plan!)


There are especially designed ice-sensing floats that check the ocean temperature each time they ascend. If the temperature gets very close to the freezing point, the float will stop heading towards the surface at 5-10 m depth and go back to its parking depth, and try again 7-10 days later.

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The float stores its profile data in memory. There is enough memory in this type of float to store as many as 68 profiles (although it is usually doesn't need to store more than 40 profiles between contacts with the satellite) Data transmission through the Iridium system is quite fast and each profile can be uploaded in no more than 2 minutes.