Arctic Field Projects



Project Title: Collaborative Research on the State of the Arctic Sea Ice Cover: Sustaining the Integrated Seasonal Ice Zone Observing Network (SIZONET) (Award# 0856867)

PI: Eicken, Hajo (heicken@alaska.edu)
Phone: (907) 474.7280 
Institute/Department: U of Alaska, Fairbanks, Geophysical Institute 
IPY Project? NO
Funding Agency: US\Federal\NSF\GEO\OPP\ARC\AON
Program Manager: Dr. William Ambrose (wambrose@nsf.gov)
Discipline(s): | Cryosphere |

Project Web Site(s):
Data: http://www.aoncadis.org/projects/collaborative_res...
Data: http://www.aoos.org
NSF_Award_Info: http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardN...
Project: http://www.sizonet.org
Data: https://arcticdata.io/

Science Summary:
This grant supports efforts to continue development of the Seasonal Ice Zone Observing Network (SIZONet). SIZONet Phase I led to the development of the sea-ice system services (SISS) concept, describing societal benefits (and potentially negative impacts) derived from the ice cover. By assessing the nature and extent of SISS, the PIs are able to build a sea-ice observing network that is responsive to the needs of both the scientific community and key stakeholders. SIZONet builds on collaboration with several international partners, and spans the entire latitudinal extent of the Arctic seasonal ice zone (SIZ). Based on common protocol and coordinated observation strategies developed in the context of an international working group led by the project team, SIZONet Phase II refines and narrows the scope of the project and focuses on sustaining core observations. The aim is to provide data and information to scientists and stakeholders that: (1) address the most urgent information needs identified by the Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) and related efforts; (2) meet sea-ice user information needs, centering on access, use of ice as a platform, and ice as coastal hazard and regulator of coastal erosion; (3) contribute to development of down-scaling approaches for climate modeling and remote sensing; and (4) are directly tied to SISS, allowing existing collaborations to grow into partnerships that can help track and predict arctic environmental change and meet long-term information needs. Observations include shore-based and drift-ice measurements of ice motion, key mass-balance variables and critical snow and ice properties such as albedo, as well as airborne ice thickness and property surveys. Measurements in coastal ice, of greatest interest to key stakeholders, include hydrographic moorings, survey measurements and integration of satellite imagery. Local ice observations and joint ice-trail mapping provide a link between sea-ice geophysics and indigenous sea-ice expertise. All SIZONet data is ingested into an archival and dissemination system linked to the Alaska Ocean Observing System, the Geographic Information Network of Alaska, and the Cooperative Arctic Data and Information System.

Logistics Summary:
This collaborative sea ice study between 0856867 (Eicken, UAF, LEAD) and 0856377 (Perovich, CRREL), continues efforts funded under 0632398 and 0632130. For this field work in Barrow and Wales, Alaska, the investigators will conduct ground and air-based ice surveys, deploy a sea-ice mass-balance site, and use an EM-bird package that is towed beneath a helicopter. During the first two years of the grant, a Dartmouth graduate student will participate in the work with support from the Dartmouth IGERT grant (0801490, Virginia, PI). Originally funded for work from 2010 to 2014, the PI received an NSF supplemental award (#1463725) to continue fieldwork through 2016. From 2010-2016, project scientists will arrange/participate in a variety of activities: fall-summer community-based ice observations; late fall/winter ice site deployments in Barrow and community outreach; Barrow aerial ice thickness surveys via helicopter in April; property surveys and seasonal ice zone buoy deployments in July; ice survey measurements-- in Wales during April/May and Barrow during May/June; August current meter deployments and hydrographic transects. On an increasing basis, the investigators will work with partners at different agencies and programs to implement a sustained observing program, culminating in a test run in the last year that will rely exclusively on outside support for the measurement program. For the work in Barrow, teams of 3 will conduct winter observations/measurements and teams of 7-8 will participate in a spring helicopter ice survey 250 km offshore, including surveys with the EM-Bird package. In July, a team of two will deploy observational buoys 5-20 miles offshore via boat. Throughout the year local ice observers will conduct ice surveys for the Barrow area. For the work in Wales, Alaska, a team of 2-3 will travel annually to conduct spring ice survey measurements. Local observers will collect sea ice data about 10 months of each year. For the first trip in 2011, a team of three will arrive ~22 January and get immediately to work establishing the mass balance site, which will be deployed until June. The team will train a local support provider to make periodic checks on the site through spring. The trip’s duration will be about one week. In late March and early April, a team will return to Barrow for the first of several visits the project will make throughout the summer. An international team of about 14 people will work in Barrow in April/May in addition to a UAF team of four. The team will conduct offshore sea-ice surveys using the EM-bird, deploy instruments, maintain the project's mass balance experiment site that was deployed in January, and conduct sea-ice trail surveys for a mapping project and the Barrow community. Some of the international researchers will fly to Barrow aboard the Polar 5 DC3, the aircraft to be used to deploy the EM-bird. A helicopter will support the ice surveys and buoy deployment from March 30th to April 5th. The science team may access the mass balance site via helicopter as well should conditions warrant. One researcher from UAF will spend about 20 days in April surveying the trail. In June, a team of 2-3 will retrieve the mass balance site and perform the melt pond study. In late July or early August, the researchers will retrieve the buoy via boat. In January 2012, a team of 3 will return to Barrow for about five days to establish the mass balance site. In late March, a team of ~8 (including colleagues from Germany and New Zealand) will arrive in Barrow to begin spring work: helicopter-supported EM bird surveys, grounded ridge surveys, mass balance site maintenance and sea-ice trail surveys. In June, ~ 3 people will retrieve the mass balance site and collect information for melt pond studies. In July, a team of ~5 (including Japanese colleagues) will make boat-based measurements. In the last week of March 2013, a team of 7-8 researchers will arrive in Barrow to begin spring work: helicopter-supported EM bird surveys, grounded ridge surveys, mass balance site maintenance and sea-ice trail surveys. In June, about 3 people will retrieve the mass balance site and collect information for melt pond studies. In July, a team of about 5 (including Japanese colleagues) will make boat-based measurements. In 2014 researchers will return to Barrow to conduct work similar to the 2013 work with a similar time frame. This project received an NSF supplement award (#1463725) to continue fieldwork through 2015. Researchers will deploy to Barrow in April, June and August to conduct further measurements of sea-ice thickness and mass balance. In June 2016, the researchers will return to Barrow to remove the project’s mass balance site and to collect samples.

CPS will provide helicopter support for the EM Bird surveys and sea ice observers in Barrow and Wales. In Barrow only, CPS will provide lodging (NSF huts), snowmachines and sleds, trucks and boat rental, comms, bear guards, hangar space, lab space and storage areas and assistance with North Slope Borough and Ukpeagvik Iñupiat Corporation permitting. In 2014 only, UAF will provide funds to cover an additional 15 hours of helicopter work via a direct bill arrangement with the NSF. In 2015, CPS will provide helicopter support and Barrow sea ice observers. In Barrow only, CPS will also provide lodging, snowmachines and sleds, trucks and boat rental, comms, bear guards, hangar space, lab space and storage areas, and assistance with permitting. In 2016, CPS will provide lodging in NSF-leased huts, as well as the usage of the following NSF-owned equipment: trucks, snowmachines, sleds, and generators. The PI will arrange and pay for all other support, including meals in Barrow and travel to and from Wales, as well as user days and any local vehicle rental.
SeasonField SiteDate InDate Out#People
2010Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)03 / 15 / 2010 08 / 07 / 20105
2010Alaska - Wales3
2011Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)01 / 22 / 2011 06 / 15 / 201124
2011Alaska - Wales3
2012Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)01 / 09 / 2012 08 / 10 / 201216
2012Alaska - Wales3
2013Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)03 / 27 / 2013 08 / 22 / 201313
2014Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)03 / 25 / 2014 08 / 06 / 201412
2014Alaska - Wales04 / 30 / 2014 05 / 02 / 20142
2015Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)01 / 06 / 2015 08 / 13 / 20159
2016Alaska - Utqiaġvik (Barrow)06 / 02 / 2016 06 / 04 / 20162
 


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