Small Clues in Greenland Lakes Reveal Big Climate Changes

A trip to a local lake is a common summertime activity for many. But there’s nothing typical about where Yarrow Axford, an associate professor of earth and planetary sciences at Northwestern University, has been boating for the better part of a decade.

The Intersection of Indigenous Communities and Modern Research

As researchers from the Permafrost Laboratory at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute, Dr. Alexander Kholodov and Dr. Santosh Panda work in some of the most difficult to access rural communities in the Alaskan interior.

Preparing For The Arctic: Field Training For Field Success

With a team of polar experts who specialize in planning and implementing field logistics, Polar Field Services (PFS) plays a critical role in preparing researchers funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a successful field season.

Grass, Environmental Change, Farming & Human Ecodynamics

Grass probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about the foundations of Icelandic culture and society. But the humble blade of grass has played an incredibly important role in Iceland since the early days of settlement.

Endangered Archaeology: Climate Change May Swallow History

When John Darwent returned to a remote corner of northwestern Greenland in 2012 to search for the remains of a paleo-Inuit culture that had occupied the area millennia ago, he found the site dramatically changed.

GrIT Situation Report 7

The Traverse arrived at Summit 08 May and departed 15 May. The crew endured a few rough days prior to reaching Summit. Snow conditions caused a loss of traction, requiring the tractors to crawl along at 3 mph.

Mapping Community Exposure to Coastal Hazards in Alaska

Communities along the far northern coastlines of Alaska are witnessing some of the highest erosion rates in the world. Less and less sea ice cover results in the direct exposure of coastal soils to the destructive blunt force of powerful wave energy.

GrIT Situation Report 6

The crew has surpassed the horrible sastrugi zone, which continued to cause our ARCS (Air ride cargo sled) pouches to detach from the decks. The battens pulled away from the decks so the crews had to improvise a different strapping method.

Setting up Camp

Each spring for as long as we can remember, we've installed a field camp for Jim Sedinger near Tutakoke, in southwestern Alaska. Sedinger's field team works there all season to continue a long-term, NSF-funded study of Black Brant geese.

GrIT Situation Report 5

The Greenland Inland Traverse (GrIT) team has left the crevasse zone and is headed to Camp Century [about 150 miles from Thule Air Base]. The GrIT team has been fighting weather and poor snow conditions the whole way.

Arctic Grayling May Find It Hard to Go with the Flow Due to Climate Change

When Mark Urban and his team of biologists arrived in the foothills of Alaska’s Brooks Range last May, for example, they were disconcerted to see tundra green and not the lingering snowfields of winter. 

GrIT Situation Report 4

All is well with the Greenland Inland Traverse (GrIT) team as they make their way through the crevasse zone [the first ~70 miles of the journey to Summit, where the fractured edge of the ice sheet leads to the unbroken ice cap].

GrIT Situation Report 3

The GrIT team headed out into the wild white yonder today. Over the next 7-8 weeks, our team will pull a giant load of outsized cargo to Summit Station, assist at Summit with science support, and then turn around and return to Thule Air Base.

Couldn't Get Much Higher

Benign weather last week led to perfect conditions for launching instrumented balloons at the NSF-funded research station in the middle of Greenland's ice sheet. We heard from science technicians at Summit, Marci Beitch (PFS) and Jason Johns (NOAA), who were suitably impressed by the flight.

GrIT Situation Report 2

The SCAT team has continued to make good progress. They started on their overnight trips into the Crevasse Zone March 7th, setting up their first camp at the B3 area, and moving just a few days later to B5a.

GrIT Situation Report 1

Welcome to the Greenland Inland Traverse (GrIT) Situation Report. This report is designed to provide progress updates throughout the field season. In cooperation with the Government of Greenland, the NSF funds and manages much of the U.S. research effort on the world’s largest island.

Polar Technology Conference - 21-22 March

Polar scientists and technology developers gather at Polar Field Services in Denver later this month for the 12th Annual Polar Technology Conference (PTC). During the two-day event, attendees exchange information on research system operational needs and technology solutions.

Economic Inequality & Environmental Change in Medieval Iceland

During the middle ages, Iceland’s recently settled landscape saw many changes. Kathryn Catlin, a doctoral candidate at Northwestern University’s Anthropology Department, is digging in Iceland’s soil for clues to the impacts of these changes.

Three field seasons in four minutes

Check out this fun video highlighting the field glaciology portion of a multi-institutional, interdisciplinary project focused on ice-ocean interaction in west Greenland.