Hi, My name is Ms. Price. Join me as I go to Churchill Canada to study Climate change.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Penetrating the Permafrost

Questions to ponder:

What do you know about permafrost? How is permafrost defined? Where is permafrost located?
Rain, bugs, and wind didn't stop us from venturing out today to dig in the mud! Today I had a bug net over my head to prevent getting bitten by the swarms of insects that love the fens.
Permafrost, or permanently frozen ground, is soil, sediment, or rock that remains at or below 0°C for at least two years. It occurs both on land and beneath offshore Arctic continental shelves, and its thickness ranges from less than 1 meter to greater than 1,000 meters. Seasonally frozen ground is near-surface soil that freezes for more than 15 days per year. Intermittently frozen ground is near-surface soil that freezes from one to 15 days per year. Frozen ground data are critical to understanding environmental change, validating models, and building and maintaining structures in seasonal frost and permafrost regions. Climate models and observations have both pointed to likely permafrost thawing in the 21st century

Today our three teams gathered about 54 soil samples at three different depths. We took soil from 0-10 cm, 10-20 and 20-30 cm below the surface. Right now in the 3 months there is not snow here, the ground isn't frozen until several meters deep. For each sample we had to take a picture of the pit, label the bags correctly and input the data into the Palm Pilot. Then we weighed the samples when we got back and put them in the drying oven.
Here is a great link for more information on the various vocabulary terms we use up here at the Churchill Northern Science Center:

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At September 10, 2009 at 2:14 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Once this permafrost is destroy can it be reclaim or reestablished. Great story. T Blancett

At September 10, 2009 at 2:55 PM , Blogger Kelsey said...

Have you siin the Northern Lights yet?


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