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Undergraduate Research Project Management System

Combining Geophysics and Geochemistry to Understand the Ammalous Accurence of Permafrost in Anchorage Alaska

Status Complete
Seeking Researchers No
Start Date 09/01/2006
End Date 06/30/2007
Funding Source Undergraduate Research Grants
Funding Amount
Community Partner
Related Course
Last Updated 07/05/2008 01:25AM
Keywords Permafrost


  Jens Munk, LeeAnn Munk

Student Researchers
  Eric Addison


Permafrost is a significant feature in the arctic and sub-arctic environments of Alaska. The occurrence and vulnerability of permafrost to change in climate (i.e. warming trends) is of particular interest from an engineering standpoint. For example, roads, pipelines and other structures can be adversely effected by changes in permafrost extent. An unexpected lens of permafrost has been encountered by the Alaska Railroad Association in Eagle River near Chugiak High School. The climate in South Central Alaska is generally too warm for permafrost to exist, particularly at lower elevations. The discovery of this particular lens of permafrost is the motivation for my research. The goal of my proposed study is to better map the extent and age of this lens. A combination of geophysical and geochemical techniques will be implemented to achieve this goal. In addition, by assessing physical characteristics of the environment, including topography, vegetation, and solar radiation, we hope to develop a predictive model for permafrost occurrence in Southcentral Alaska.

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