The full list of projects contains the entire database hosted on this portal, across the available directories. The projects and activities (across all directories/catalogs) are also available by country of origin, by geographical region, or by directory.
Waves play a major role for the momentum and energy transport in the middle atmosphere [Fritts and van Zandt, 1993] by modifying the local temperature field as well as the general circulation when the waves reach the saturation level and break [Holton, 1983; Fritts, 1984]. The MACWAVE rocket campaign is investigating the wave field in polar latitudes during summer and winter. To learn more about the horizontal structure of the wave field, it is important to measure at more than one station. For the monitoring of the vertical transport by the waves, measurements over a large height range are necessary. The combination of lidars, radiosondes and falling spheres will cover the region from the ground up to approximately 105 km. When comparing data, it is important to take into account the different measurement principles and integration times. The rocket will show small scale variations whereas the lidar permits a continuous monitoring of the temperature and wave situation
These investigations confirm the fact that in the stratosphere the ozone is considerably influenced by dynamical processes and it is a good indicator of them. In this context the main objectives of the proposed study are: 1) to investigate the possible relationship between stratospheric ozone perturbations and the temperature enhancement in the upper mesosphere, observed by Shepherd et al. (2001); 2) to examine whether changes in ozone, concomitant with the phenomenon, take place and how and when they would be manifested; and 3) to investigate the stratospheric ozone behaviour during the equinox atmospheric transition in the North Hemisphere, for better understanding of the middle atmosphere dynamics.
The purpose of the CHAOS_A project is to perform measurements under "Antarctic conditions" during the polar vortex period with the new assembled spectrometer in order to perform tasks that cannot be achieved at low latitudes namely OClO detection. Therefore the campaign focus more in technical aspects than scientific ones. The period of observation may be short to achieve results of scientific interest and those will depend on the meteorology of the stratosphere (position of the polar vortex relative to the station, temperatures at the lower stratosphere, etc). The OClO results will be compared with those obtained by the NILU (Andoya) and Heidelberg U.
The succession of macro- and microalgal communities in the Antarctic will be investigated in field experiments under various UV radiation (UVR) conditions and in the absence or presence of grazers. The observed differences in the succession process will be correlated to physiological traits of single species, especially in spores and germlings, which are the most vulnerable stages in their life histories. Photosynthetic activity of the different developmental stages will be measured routinely. Additionally we plan the determination of pigment composition, C:N ratios, content of UV protective pigments and of possible DNA damage. The experiments will start in spring, concomitant to the time of highest UVBR, due to the seasonal depletion of the ozone layer in the Antarctic region. Supplemental laboratory experiments will be conducted to determine the effects of UVR on spores and germlings of individual species. In addition to the above analyses, we plan to examine of UVR induced damage of cell fine structure and of the cytoskeleton. The results of both the field and laboratory experiments will allow us to predict the consequences of enhanced UVR for the diversity and stability of the algal community.
Radioactivity in the Arctic environment is a central topic within environmental pollution issues. Increased discharges of technetium-99 (99Tc) from the nuclear fuel reprocessing plant Sellafield to the Irish Sea has caused public concerns in Norway. This project (acronym “RADNOR”) includes model and monitoring assessments and improvements, assessment of current and novel abiotic and biotic dose parameters and dose calculations and use of realistic climatic background scenarios in order to assess corresponding consequences for transport of radioactive pollutants. RADNOR consists of three main components: part 1, the determination of levels and time series of 99Tc in benthic and pelagic food webs; part 2, containing working packages on improvements to the understanding of site-specific and time-dependent sediment-water interactions (KD), kinetics of accumulation (CF) and body distribution in marine organisms, including contaminated products for the alginate industry and part 3, dealing with model hindcasts and observations for spreading of 99Tc from the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant during the 1990s and improvement of the NRPA dose assessment box model. From the model outputs, doses to man and environment will be calculated resulting in a valuable database for use within environmental management and for decision makers.
Study aerosol properties (size and composition) in the infrared spectral region
The major goal of the process study between April 15 and May 15, 2003 is to obtain quantified information on reaction path-ways, products and net deposition of mercury during Arctic sunrise.
In december 2001 the SAGE III experiment was successfully launched. The NASA science team of the SAGE III experiment has announced the Koldewey-Station in Ny-Aalesund as "anchor site" for validation, especially for such parameters as optical depth, aerosol extinction profiles and ozone profiles. Because of time coincidence NASA apprechiates support for the prospected validation activities for ENVISAT. This should be also considered as contribution to the NASA accepted project "Ground based Validation of SAGE III by the NDSC Primary Station at Ny-Ålesund, Spitsbergen" for SOLVE-2.
Description of parameters of the population dynamics of polar bivalve communities, first year: growth and reproductive cycle of the dominant Greenland cockles (Serripes groenlandicus)
In situ measurements in the stratosphere shall be carried out by means of different balloon soundings. The main goal is the investigation of aerosols in the tropopause-region and in the stratosphere during wintertime. Because generation of aerosols strongly depends on water vapour content, also water vapour will be measured.
The Italian Space Agency (ASI), in cooperation with CNR, would like to develop a balloon launch site at Ny-Ålesund. The polar stratospheric air circulation pattern can make it possible to perform Long Duration Balloon (LDB) Flights. The balloons would circumnavigate the northern Polar Regions collecting data in astrophysics, aeronomy, as well as other atmospheric, cosmic and biological sciences. The location on Svalbard is interesting for LDB flights because of : o easy access and transportation of equipment /material/personnel o well established infrastructures/support organization o the flight would occur over mostly unmanned areas o the recovery of the payload could easily happen on the land Currently two experiments are being built as LDB payloads in anticipation of launching from Ny-Ålesund in 2004 and 2005. These are astro-physics experiments to observe the galactic and cosmic microwave radiation. This facility would accommodate science teams from both Italy and around the world.
Study of the energy exchange between atmosphere, sea ice and ocean during freezing and melting conditions; within that, measurements of solar radiation (visible and UV) and optical properties, snow and sea ice characteristics, vertical heat and salt fluxes, oceanographic parameters.
During the spring/summer transition, sea ice and snow properties change considerably in response to warming and the eventual reversal of temperature gradients within the snow and ice. Snow melt water percolates down towards the colder snow/ice interface, where it refreezes to form superimposed ice. On sea ice this process occurs probably longer and more intensive than on land, because throughout the summer the ice and underlying seawater is always colder than the snow. In Antarctica superimposed ice may actually form layers of some decimeters in thickness. The objective of this study is to investigate the main processes and boundary conditions for superimposed ice formation, in recognition of its importance for Antarctic sea ice, and its possible importance for Arctic sea ice in case of environmental changes due to future climate change. This will be performed by means of modeling as well as by combined measurements of the temporal evolution of snow and ice properties and the energy budget.
Changes in surface reflection at the arctic tundra at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard (79 N) were monitored during the melting season 2002 using a low cost multispectral digital camera with spectral channels similar to channels 2, 3, and 4 of the Landsat Thematic Mapper satellite sensor. The camera was placed 474 m above sea level at the Zeppelin Mountain Research Station and was programmed to take an image automatically every day at solar noon. To achieve areal consistency in the images (which is necessary for mapping purposes) the images were geometrically rectified into multispectral digital orthophotos. In contrast to satellite images with high spatial resolution the orthophotos provide data with high spatial and high temporal resolution at low cost. The study area covers approximately 2 km2 and when free of snow, it mainly consists of typical high arctic tundra with patchy vegetation and bare soil in between. The spectral information in the images was used to divide the rectified images into maps representing different surface classes (including three subclasses of snow). By combining classified image data and ground measurements of surface reflectance, a model to produce daily maps of surface albedo was developed. The model takes into account that snow-albedo decreases as the snow pack ages; and that the albedo decreases very rapidly when the snow pack is shallow enough (20-30 cm) to let surface reflectance get influenced by the underlying ground. Maps representing days with no image data (due to bad weather conditions) were derived using interpolation between pixels with equal geographical coordinates. The time series of modeled albedo-maps shows that the time it takes for the albedo to get from 80% to bare ground levels varies from less than 10 days in areas near the coast or in the Ny-Ålesund settlement till more than 70 days in areas with large snow accumulations. For the entire study area the mean length of the 2002 melting period was 28.3 days with a standard deviation of 15.1 days. Finally, the duration of the snowmelt season at a location where it is measured routinely, was calculated to 23 days, which is very close to what is the average for the last two decades.
To investigate arctic foxes physiological adaptations to life at high latitudes. Resting and running metabolic rates, body weight, food intake, body core temperature, heart rate, and blood parameters were examined during different seasons and during periods of food deprivation.
Biological nitrogen fixation by cyanobacteria is a key process for productivity in terrestrial Arctic ecosystems and the activity is dependent of size and diversity of cyanobacterial populations. Changes in biodiversity after pertubations of different types of habitats simulating climatic changes or other antropogenic effects will be studied by molecular methods and correlated to variations of nitrogen fixation activity.
The structure and role of the cyanobacterial communities that colonise bare soils and fix nitrogen in the arctic ecosystem will be studied. The planned activities will focus on the isolation, identification and characterisation of cyanobacteria from arctic habitats and on the changes of the cyanobacterial community along a transect from a retreating glacier front to a more stable habitat characterised by the presence of mature vegetation. For these purposes, a polyphasic approach encompassing microbiological, morphological and molecular techniques will be applied to environmental samples and isolated cultures. The obtained results will give new insights on the diversity and role of nitrogen fixing cyanobacteria in the arctic and, in more general terms, on ecosystem development under changing climatic conditions.
To evaluate temporal variation in arctic fox numbers and their food resourses in the Kongsfjorden area. The number of foxes captured per 100 trap-days are used as an index of fox density termed "Fox Capture Index". The observations of denning activity i.e. observation of number of arctic fox litters and litter size at den are termed "Fox Den Index" as a second index of fox abundance. A third index is termed "Fox Observation Index". This index is based on both observations of adult foxes seen away from breeding dens pr 100 h field work and reports on request from scientists and local people on observations of adult foxes during summer. In addition, reports on observation of fox tracks in the study area were collected in 1990-2001 as a fourth index, which were called "Fox Track Index". The field census are conducted for 10 days starting at the end of June. All dead foxes in the area should be collected.
Part of the international project Arctic Costal Dynamics (ACD) were Department of Physical Geography, University of Oslo participates. The working group consists of Trond Eiken (UoO), Bjørn Wangensteen (UoO) and Rune Ødegård (Gjøvik University College). The aim of this part of the ACD-project is to quantify coastal cliff erosion by the use of terrestrial photogrammetry.
The objectives of this project is to study the effect of environmental stochasticity on the Svalbard reindeer population dynamics, nad further evaluate how this may affect reindeer-plant interactions.