Congrats to Karine Rioux for its excellent talk at Géoforum!

April 24, 2017 in @en, Article by Davesne.G

On the 21st of April, Karine Rioux presented the main part of her honors bachelor project. Her presentation was part of the GeoForum 2017 of the Geography department (University of Montreal). Her project consists in evaluating the efficiency of a mitigation technique; the use of snowsheds to increase the thermal stability of permafrost along an experimental section of the Alaska Highway (Yukon). Karine skillfully demonstrated thermal dynamics of the air and the firsts centimeters of permafrost under the snowsheds, compared with a test section. Her good work and communicating skills won her the prize of the best honors presentation in physical geography! Congratulations Karine!

Shipping of field equipment to Resolute Bay (NU)! (G. Davesne et A. Veillette)

April 19, 2017 in @en, post by Davesne.G

The preparation of field summer in the Arctic begins in the fall with the logistic support (ex. Polar continental shelf program) and permits (ex. Parks Canada) requests. Once the supports and permits are accepted, generally in February and March, it’s time to plan the field season. The most important step is the preparation of the heavy equipment and food that are shipped by cargo flight to PCSP base in Resolute Bay. A careful preparation is crucial in order to precisely estimate the needs for the field season.

Gautier Davesne and Audrey Veillette shipped their equipment and food this Monday, which means that the field season will start soon…

Isotopic analysis of water (M. Paquette)

April 14, 2017 in post by Davesne.G

When all you need is a few millilitres. These 2 ml bottles are more than enough for measuring isotopic composition of water. This technique has many application, but in this case we are trying to figure out what percentage of the water flowing through the water tracks of Ward Hunt Island originate from snowmelt and how much from shallow groundwater. Even though we might suspect a lot of snowmelt, all bets are off really.

Patterned grounds on Ward Hunt Island (M. Paquette)

April 8, 2017 in post by Davesne.G

Patterned Grounds! Among the most interesting features of periglacial areas are these self-organised soil mosaics, which can take a wide range of shapes and size and are created by freeze-thaw cycles. The type of soil and the slope angle is very important in deciding the shape and the size of the patterns. This picture was taken on Ward Hunt Island, looking north, and shows the transition between scree slope colluviums (material moving downslope because of gravity) to the right and drift deposits (material deposited by a glacier) to the left. The colluviums don’t sort well because of the absence of fine sediments in the soil matrix, and we can only see small bulges where the underlying drift emerges from depth. The drift is frost susceptible, and is organized in stripe-like features oriented toward the direction of the slope. The different colours are also caused by the proliferation of biological soil crusts on the drift, as edaphic conditions are modified.