Crew Wanted! – Arctic Sense 2023 Expedition

We apologise for the infrequent communication due to our busy schedule, but we are excited to update you on the progress of the upcoming Arctic Sense 2023 expedition. With just one week left until we embark on our journey, we are eager to share our latest developments with you.

This expedition is a follow up to the highly successful 2021 Arctic Sense expedition, that will see us return to the North once more to continue our storytelling, research and resulting science communication.

The planned legs for the coming Arctic Sense 2023 expedition are as follows:
Leg 1: The Norwegian Coast – Svalbard to Tromsø [June 1 – June 13]
Leg 2: Tromsø to Svalbard [June 16 – June 28]
Leg 3: The ROV Leg with the Black Whale Team [July 1 – July 19]
Leg 4: The Pack Ice [July 27 – August 13]
Leg 5: Svalbard to Tromsø [August 19 – August 27]
Leg 6: Tromsø Stavanger [August 28 – September 5]

We are looking for a few crew members to join us on some of the legs. We need;
– One crew member for Leg 1
– One crew member for Leg 3
– One crew member for Leg 4
– Two crew members for Leg 5
– Two crew members for Leg 6

We are generally looking for sailors, scientists/researchers, photographers and storytellers. Our ideal crew member is someone that has at least one of these attributes paired with some sailing experience and/or a level of comfort with being at sea for longer periods of time. Overall and most importantly we’re looking for crew members that share Barba’s values and want to be a part of our mission. Details and logistics will be discussed with candidates that are shortlisted.

Please complete this form if you’re interested in joining us. If you’ve previously completed the crew form please send an email to expressing your renewed interest.

Barba’s Arctic Sense 2021 Expedition Goes Virtual in Nordsøen Oceanarium Exhibition!

We teamed up with our scientific research partners Whale Wise and The University of Iceland to bring the Arctic Sense 2021 expedition to life for everyone to experience through an interactive virtual reality (VR) exhibition. The exhibition is currently on display at the Nordsøen Oceanarium in Hirtshals, Denmark as part of a Nordplus educational program funded by The Nordic Council of Ministers.

The exhibition showcases the Arctic Sense 2021 Expedition’s content, which includes breathtaking footage of the Arctic’s unique wildlife, stunning land and seascapes, and the researching methods conducted from the boat and off the boat. Visitors can immerse themselves in the Arctic world using VR goggles, creating a truly interactive experience.

Andreas B. Heide expressed his pride in being able to share the expedition’s content with the world and continue to focus on making an impact. “At Barba, our sailing stories, research and content don’t mean much if we can’t share them with the world and have an impact,” he said.

The exhibition was a collaborative effort with our research partners, Whale Wise and The University of Iceland, who also provided scientific expertise and support for the expedition.

Barba Arctic Sense content at Nordsøen Oceanarium   Barba Arctic Sense 2021 exhibit area at Nordsøen Oceanarium

Pictured: The Arctic Sense 2021 exhibition at the Nordsøen Oceanarium

The exhibition is a unique opportunity for visitors to learn about the Arctic and its importance, as well as the challenges we are facing with climate change and plastic pollution in our seas. The Arctic is a critical region for climate research, and understanding its ecosystems is crucial for predicting and protecting the future of our planet.

Zimbabwean sailor, Tawanda Chikasha joins Barba

Barba is thrilled to announce that Tawanda Chikasha, an accomplished sailor and science communicator from Zimbabwe, has joined our team for the Arctic Sense 2023 expedition and beyond. With extensive experience in sailing and diving, including a notable performance in the Cape2Rio 2020 Yacht Race, Tawanda brings a proven track record of success to our crew.

Andreas B. Heide, the team captain, said “We are excited to welcome Tawanda to the Barba Team, and further our diversity and talent base by having a crew member from Zimbabwe. His skillset, dedication, and passion for sailing and our oceans make him a perfect fit for our team, and we look forward to achieving great success together.”

Tawanda is eager to start preparing with the crew and contribute to Barba’s success both on and off the water. “I am honoured to be part of the Barba Team,” said Tawanda. “I look forward to working hard and helping the team achieve our goals and make a difference. I am also very excited to experience the Arctic for the first time with such a great team while doing important work in the name of conservation, storytelling and research.”


Featured photo by Ashleigh De Villiers

Tales of Jan Mayen – our first independent documentary

The Barba team served as facilitators and producers for our first independent documentary. Although we have had the privilege of being featured in numerous productions before, this is the first time we have been involved in the production process. The documentary is a short film with a runtime of 30 minutes.

Tales of Jan Mayen chronicles a sailing voyage to the remote Arctic island of Jan Mayen to recreate the 1921 British expedition to summit Mount Beerenberg, the world’s northernmost active volcano. Co-led by writer Hugh Francis Anderson and expedition sailor Andreas B. Heide, they use history as their guide to learn more about the island as they embark on their own summit attempt on the centenary of the first ascent. Along the way, they uncover the island’s dark past, use citizen science to document marine life, and discover how climate change is affecting the volcano’s glaciers today.


Link to the 1 minute trailer. The full length 30 minute version is currently being submitted to festivals. 


From the premiere at the Kendal Mountain Film Festival.

Q&A session at the Kendal Mountain Film Festival. From the right, Andreas B. Heide (producer), Hugo Petit (director) and Hugh Francis Anderson (producer and writer).

Tales of Jan Mayen - poster

Letter to my younger self

Since 2021 we have had the privilege of working with North Sails as a technical partner. The Barba captain Andreas has also been selected as a North Sails ambassador. In this post by North, you can read the captain´s letter to his younger self.

National Geographic UK features Barba and Arctic Sense 2021

“It was a very touching moment to see something so fantastic and so majestic, especially knowing it could have been lost. Their slow recovery is a success for conservation. It shows there is hope.” – Andreas B. Heide

In a recent National Geographic UK article written by Hugh Francis Anderson, Barba and Arctic Sense 2021 were featured with the story of their blue whale encounter during the expedition. The article depicts the strong feelings of emotion felt by the crew being that close to the largest animal on earth, and seeing likely 10 different individuals at once. As the North Atlantic population of blue whales was brought to the brink of extinction, it is estimated that still only around 1,000 individuals are living today. However, seeing these animals, an arguable 1% of the entire population, gives hope that despite humans nearly depleting them entirely, they are making a slow recovery.

This is not to say that North Atlantic blue whales aren’t still facing major threats – they are far from ‘saved’. For these reasons, Andreas plans to hopefully return to Svalbard in 2023 with the specific focus of further studying and tracking the blues.

Read the full article here 


Feature photo by Tord Karlsen / Barba

Live broadcast for 400 students in US & Canada

December 7th Andreas had the great pleasure of doing a live broadcast for 400 school children in the US & Canada, speaking about sailing in the Arctic and nature conservation.

The presentation was hosted by Exploring by the Seat of Your Pants, whose goal is to inspire the next generation of scientists and explorers. They do this by bringing science, exploration, adventure and conservation live into classrooms through virtual guest speakers and field trips with leading experts around the world. Our goal is still to reach 200 000 school children with the Arctic Sense expedition, and with this, we are off to a good start. The 50 minute long presentation can be seen here.


We received a number of comments from the students including this one from a 4th grader from Glenview, Illinois: “The most important thing that I thought was helpful was not to throw stuff in the ocean and recycle, because then we can save the animals in it.” With these words we wish you all a great and plastic minimalistic Christmas!

Arctic Sense – the end and the beginning

October 5, 2021 Barba returned to her homeport of Stavanger which she left June 1st 4 months earlier. The total travelled distance was 6000 nautical miles / 10 000 km, equivalent to a quarter of the globes circumference.


First of all, it was a collective effort, enabled not only by the crew, but also by a dedicated onshore team as well as multiple partners and sponsors.  Overall, the mission has been an overwhelming success, and this in a time of pandemic that complicated the matters even further, says Andreas B. Heide mission director and captain of the Barba.


Although the expeditions is completed, the communication will continue with full force in the time to come. Numerous feature stories will follow, talk, school presentation as well as the making of two documentaries.


Click here to see the expedition summary page.

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