|The Second International Polar Year 1932-1933|Lüdecke, C.; Lajus, J. (2010). The Second International Polar Year 1932-1933, in: Barr, S. et al. (Ed.) The history of the International Polar Years (IPYs). From Pole to Pole, : pp. 135-173. hdl.handle.net/10.1007/978-3-642-12402-0_6
In: From Pole to Pole. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 2193-7338, more
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After the first International Polar Year, magnetism and polar research were institutionalised by the International Meteorological Committee (IMC) within the Commission for Terrestrial Magnetism and Atmospheric Electricity established in 1891.1 The Commission for Aeronautics followed in 1896 under the presidency of the leading aerologist Hugo Hergesell (1859–1938) to co-ordinate aerological ascents to investigate the meteorological conditions of the upper air on an international basis.2 At the end of the nineteenth century, aerological methods with registering instruments connected to kites and captured balloons to measure air pressure indicating the height, temperature and humidity had been well-established. By soundings of free-flying pilot balloons with two theodolites, wind speed and direction could be derived. The understanding of meteorological processes had made huge progress with the discovery of the stratosphere and the tropopause in 1902.3 During a Danish expedition to the east coast of Greenland 1906–1908, Alfred Wegener (1880–1930) successfully introduced aerology to polar regions4 (Fig. 6.1). Due to Hergesell’s initiative a German Geophysical Observatory was established on the west coast of Spitsbergen in 1911 in context with Graf Ferdinand von Zeppelin’s (1838–1917) plan to explore the High Arctic with his dirigibles.