Arctic Field Projects

Project Title: IPY: Halogen Chemistry and Ocean-Atmosphere-Sea Ice-Snowpack (OASIS) Chemical Exchange During IPY (Award# 0732556)

PI: Shepson, Paul B (
Phone: (765) 494.7441 
Institute/Department: Purdue University, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences 
IPY Project? YES
Funding Agency: US\Federal\NSF\GEO\OPP\ARC\AON
Program Manager: Dr. Erica Key ( )
Discipline(s): | Instrument Development | Meteorology and Climate |

Project Web Site(s):

Science Summary:
This project is part of the US contribution to an IPY research program called OASIS (for Ocean, Air, Sea Ice and Snow interactions). OASIS is an interdisciplinary study involving scientific contributions from the USA, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK. The main objective is to better understand air-surface chemical interactions in the Arctic, and how these will evolve in future climates. In particular, OASIS will focus on quantitative and reliable determination of chemical and biological fluxes to and from ice and snow surfaces, as a function of the nature of the surface and other relevant environmental conditions. Researchers on this particular OASIS experiment will test this overall hypothesis: Halogen atom chemistry occurs at substantially different rates above the frozen Arctic Ocean surface vs. the open Arctic Ocean, due to chemistry that occurs at the sea-ice surface. Those differences will translate into changing arctic atmospheric composition and thus radiative transfer as sea ice continues to decline. The team will develop an instrument for ultra-trace level determination of the halogen atom (Cl, Br, and I) and radical (ClO, BrO and IO) concentrations in the air above the Arctic Ocean. The instrument will help to address the hypothesis that halogen atom chemistry derived from salt associated with the surface of the sea ice has a very large impact on the oxidizing power of the Arctic atmospheric boundary layer. This in turn results in production of cloud condensation nuclei, which in turn influence cloud cover. However, the ability to directly measure halogen atom concentrations needs to be developed, so that this important chemistry (that results in rapid depletion of ozone and mercury during Arctic spring) can be monitored as sea ice cover changes in the coming decades. Interpretation of the field measurements will be aided by 1-D, multiphase, numerical modeling of interactions among reactive species, and mixing and transport. An important outcome of the project will be a fully-tested, robust, portable sampling device that will facilitate long-term measurements of halogen atom chemistry as part of the Arctic Observing Network as the sea ice cover in the Arctic changes. Broader impacts include (1) participation in the fieldwork of a writer, Peter Lourie, who is planning to write a book about global climate change, and (2), development of public outreach and graduate courses related to Arctic climate change in partnership with the Purdue Climate Research Center.

Logistics Summary:
This project's researchers will study the relationship between sea ice and cloud cover in the Arctic. As part of OASIS, the work will be coordinated with several IPY projects--Circumpolar Flaw Lead (CFL), Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH), Arctic Observing Network (AON), and Arctic Summer Cloud-Ocean Study (ASCOS)--to design, build, test, and implement a robust and portable sampling device that will facilitate long term measurements of halogen atom chemistry as ice cover in the Arctic changes. Other US components of OASIS include NCAR (0806437), U California (0807702, the logistics lead), U. Colorado, and Georgia Tech. Though the main effort occurs in 2009, field work begins the year prior when the PI participates in a science cruise and continues in 2010 and 2011 due to a supplement to the grant (0732556). In February 2008, a research team will conduct measurements over a range of surface types as part of the Canadian Icebreaker CCGS Amundsen's overwinter campaign off Banks Island, NWT, Canada. In late winter/early spring 2009, the researchers will participate in a field effort based from Barrow, AK, with a small satellite camp within easy snowmachine distance from the village. Logistics details for OASIS 2009 will be carried under the record for 0807702 (Anastasio/Beine) in this database. For about 10 weeks beginning in February, when photochemical halogen chemistry takes place with vigor, the OASIS research team will base near the Barrow Arctic Research Center (BARC), in two small buildings on the tundra. The researchers will conduct a variety of experiments, including gas flux measurements and examinations of the impact of snowpack and halogen chemistry on the chemical structure of the atmosphere through measurements of vertical profiles of various gases and particles. The vertical measurements will be taken via tethered balloons and sample lines at varying heights of which will be sampled and measured for different gases and compounds by instruments in two adjacent portable lab buildings located a small distance upwind of the BARC, but with easy sample access to un-adulterated snowpack. Researchers will conduct additional experiments at the Barrow Arctic Research Center (BARC) and via small towers located close to the buildings. In particular, the Shepson component will involve a research team of three—one for the entire course of the field effort, and two making trips of about a week each. This team will deploy an experimental instrument to capture data on halogen radical chemistry. They also will take measurements from the tethered balloon. This research group will host Canadian colleagues, led by long-term collaborator Jan Bottenhiem of Environment Canada, studying ozone and mercury depletion and carry out sampling from the lagoon nearby and from near the Barrow lead over a 3-4 week period. The PI received a supplement (0732556) to the original grant to develop and field-test in 2010- 2011 a portable, automated air-sampling system that is mounted on a heated sled. The system is intended to sample for remote determinations of BrO and ClO. The PI will develope the sled in 2010, meanwhile, documentarian Peter Lourie will return to Barrow to continue filming native culture. Shepson has teamed with Lourie to create the Web site, Arctic Stories, which provides a platform for OASIS outreach among other topics. In 2011, Shepson and a colleague will return to Barrow mid-month to field-test the new system. The team will use heated warehouse space in Barrow to work on the sampling sled and then conduct measurements at a sea-ice lead, using trucks and snowmachines to access the site for day trips. Both researchers will stay in a Barrow hut for the duration of the trip.

For 2011, CPS will provide, via subcontractor BTS/UMIAQ, access to infrastructure and services in Barrow. This includes lodging; snowmachine and truck use; warehouse space, communications and safety gear; assistance with permitting; and bear guards and laborer assistance. The PI will arrange and pay for all other support--including meals--through the grant. For previous years, - Logistics aboard the CCGS Amundsen will be managed and paid by the Canadian government. - Logistics aboard the Oden will be managed and paid by one of the ASCOS coordinators; the PI will use direct to grant funds to pay for travel costs, shipment of equipment, and 70 USD per day while on the ship. - Logistics for any work completed aboard the USCG Healy on cruises of opportunity would be paid by NSF through an arrangement with the USCG. --For support assignments related to OASIS 2009, see the record for 0807702 in this database. --All other logistics will be arranged by the PI and paid through the grant.
SeasonField SiteDate InDate Out#People
2008Arctic Ocean and Seas - Arctic Ocean07 / 31 / 2008 09 / 15 / 20081
2008Canada - Banks Island1
2009Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)3
2009Arctic Ocean and Seas - Beaufort Sea1
2010Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)1
2011Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)03 / 09 / 2011 03 / 29 / 20112

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