1989

Joint Japanese-Argentine Expedition to the Antarctic for the study of permafrost at Seymour Island (Marambio) during Nov. 1987 - Jan. 1988

The Japanese team was integrated as follows: Masami Fukuda, Low Temperature Science Institute, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan. Michio Nogami , Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo. Kuneo Omoto, Faculty of Science, C14 Laboratory Nihon University SITAGAJAZ Tokyo, and T. Koisumi , Tokyo Gokugei University.

The Argentine team was composed as follows: Arturo E. Corte, Laboratory of Geocryology , CRICYT Mendoza; Jorge Strellin, Instituto Antartico Buenos Aires and Faculty of Sciences University of Buenos Aires; Enrique M. Buk, and Luis Lenzano, Laboratory of Geocryology , CRICYT Mendoza. Field data is being analyzed and Joint report will be presented at a
meeting which will be held in Tokyo next October. The following aspects will be treated in a joint report:

  1. General Geology and Geomorphology
  2. Physical environment of the Island
  3. Geoelectrical surveys
  4. General Geocryology
  5. Geocryogenic forms
  6. Frost action eolian and fluvial processes
  7. Excavation sites at four areas in the Meseta and one in Larsen
  8. Geochemistry, accumulation of salts under the stones and C14 analysis and dating
  9. Discussion and summary.

Report by A. Corte

Both the Canadian National Committee for the IPA (CNC/IPA) and the Permafrost Subcommittee of the Associate Committee on Geotechnical Research (ACGR) met in November 1988. Permafrost activities in Canada over the past 12 months are summarized as follows:

At the Geological Association of Canada Annual Meeting in Montreal, Quebec, on May 16, 1989, a special session entitled "Massive Ground Ice: Delineation, geology and origin" was organized by F. A. Michel (Carleton University) and A. S. Judge
(Geological Survey of Canada). Fifteen papers were presented including several from Soviet participants. There were approximately 60 participants.

Following the annual meeting of the Canadian Geotechnical Society in Winnipeg, a workshop on Saline Permafrost was held at the University of Manitoba on October 26,1989. The workshop was sponsored jointly by the Permafrost Subcommittee and the Cold Regions Geotechnology Division of the Canadian Geotechnical-Society. The organizers were D. Sego (University of Alberta), T.H.W. Baker (National Research Council of Canada), P. Vidan (Government of the Northwest Territories). There
were approximately forty participants.

The Lanzhou lnstitute of Glaciology and Geocryology (LIGG) celebrated its 30th anniversary and hosted the Fourth Conference on Glaciology and Geocryology from October 5-9, 1988, in Lanzhou.

A total of 142 scientists from seven nations participated.The conference was broken into concurrent sessions on glaciology and permafrost. The topics discussed under glaciology included snowfall, glaciology, geomorphology, surging glaciers and
hydrology (particularly related to the glaciers of western China). The permafrost sessions dealt with periglacial landforms and processes, recharge of groundwater in permafrost regions, hydroengineering construction and the ecological environment in permafrost regions. Most papers dealt with studies in the Soviet Union and Canada, as well as glaciological studies in the Alps, also were presented.

Several key questions were discussed. One dealt with evidence for and against extensive glaciation of the Qinghai-Xizang (Tibetian) Plateau during the last glacial stage. The current estimates range from a 10% increase in ice cover to complete coverage of the plateau by an extensive ice sheet. Prof. Li Jijun from the Department of Geography of the Lanzhou University argued, based on geomorphic information, that the ice cover during the last glacial stage was about 10% greater than present. Another key issue is whether the plateau was cold and dry or cold and wet during the last glacial stage. The latter condition would allow for greater growth of glaciers. The clear message from these discussions is the need for more research with better time control.

Based on a report by L. Thompson, Ohio State University, USA

We are pleased to welcome Denmark as the newest member of our association. On 18 October 1988 Denmark applied for membership with the Danish Society for Arctic Technology (SAT) as the Adhering Body. SAT was established in 1985 with the objective of creating an interdisciplinary contact between individuals and companies with knowledge and interest in cold regions
technology. SAT has 200 individual members and 35 company members. The officers of SAT are as follows:

Chairman :
Mr. Gunnar P. Rosendahl, Director, Nuna-Tek (formerly Greenland Technical Organization, GTO)

Vice Chairman:
Mr. Henrik Mai, Managing Director, Arctic Consultant Group

Secretary General:
Mr. Thorkild Thornsen, M.Sc., Nuna-Tek Surveys.

The application of Denmark for membership was approved by mail ballot of Council Members and has been eonfirmed by a general meeting of SAT. The Board of SAT has approved that Denmark pay dues of $250 per year in Group 3.

The Finnish Geotechnical Society sponsored the International Symposium on Frost in Geotechnical Engineering on March 13-15,1989, in Saariselka, Finland. Approximately 150 researchers from around the world attended. Three sessions were
held, including special lectures on the mechanics of freezing and thawing by B. Ladanyi, the frost heave properties of soils by D.M. Anderson, and frost protection in design and construction by R. Nordal. Other lectures were:

  • Simulation of freezing and thawing of soil materials by E.A. Bondarev
  • Frost problems in road construction by H. Brand1
  • Modeling of thermal soil behavior by M. Fremond
  • Frost susceptibility of soils by H. Jessberger
  • Frost protection of design and construction in Japan by F. Kohno
  • Preventative measures against frost action in soils by S. Kinosita
  • Freezing and thawing in cylindrical coordinates by V.J. Lunardini
  • Preventative measures against frost action in soils by A. Phukan
  • Evaluation of frost heave properties of soils by S. Saarelainen
  • Adfreeze strength of soils by A.V. Sadovsky
  • Physical changes in clay due to frost action and their effects on engineering structures by E. Chamberlain.

52 related papers were presented and discussed and were published in two volumes, available from Technical Research Center of Finland. Following the symposium there was a two-day field trip to observe roads and road construction techniques
in Lapland. Methods of dealing with road icings, cracking and snow drifting were examined. The next symposium is scheduled for Anchorage, Alaska in 1993.

Based on a report by V. Lunardini, CRREL, USA

At the Council Meeting of 2  August 1988, France's application for membership was approved by unanimous vote. The IPA welcomes France as a member. The French Permafrost Association was formed on 22 April 1988.

The Executive Committee is composed of:

  • J. Aguirre - Puente, President
  • J. Malaurie, Vice - President
  • J. P. Lautridou, Treasurer
  • A. M. Cames - Pintaux, Secretary

The Second International Conference on Geornorphology took place at the University of Frankfurt between September 3 and 9, 1989. More than 650 abstracts of lectures and posters were accepted for presentation at this conference and are published. Permafrost related topics were mainly treated in section 5 (climate geomorphology), with a special subsection
devoted to periglacial geomorphology. During several one-day field trips, relict permafrost and periglacial features were demonstrated.

A special symposium was devoted to "Polar Geomorphology" and took place before the main conference in Bremen (August 30 to September 3). It was organized by the Institute for Physical and Polar Geography of the University of Bremen (Professor G. Stablin). 28 papers were presented to 35 participants from 15 different countries. Most of the papers presented in Frankfurt and in Bremen will be published in scientific journals, mainly in the Zeitschrift fur Geornorphologie or in Permafrost and Periglacial Processes.

Dr. Fujino and his members conducted a field survey near Tuktoyaktuk from late February through mid-March, 1989. A ground radar system was employed to check the distributions of massive ice bodies.

Dr. Oho, of the Environmental Science Department of Hokkaido University, and his group conducted a field survey in Svalbard from mid- June through mid-August this summer. Main objectives were the measurement of the growth of a Pingo in Advendalen, hydrological study of ground water from glaciers, and recent developments of ice-wedge relation to the
cracking process. During the previous year they installed ground temperature recorders and other necessary equipment at the site. Precise ground levelings were made to detect the recent upheaval of ground associated with pingo growth. A chemical analysis of the ground water was also performed on site.

Dr. Fukuda and his group conducted a field survey at Mt. Daisetu in central Hokkaido where they had previously reported the presence of alpine permafrost. Geophysical surveys were made by means of electrical resistivity and seismic profiling. According to a preliminary report, the permafrost table of alpine perrnafrost was estimated as 15 m thick. This reading matched a previous figure determined through annual ground temperature fluctuations.

Dr. Fukuda and his group will also conduct a field survey on permafrost occurrence in the Antarctic Peninsula area. They will cooperate with Prof. E. Retarnal from the University of Chile and Dr. J. Strelin of the lnstituto Antarctica Argentina. They will visit King George Island, Seymour (Marimbio) Island, and James Ross Island. The expedition will start in mid-November and will end in late January, 1990.

M. Fukuda

Report from the U. S. S. R.

The annual meeting of the Scientific Council for Earth Cryology of the USSR Academy of Sciences was held in March, 1987 in Moscow. About 60 papers were discussed at 8 sessions. The Plenary papers were:

  • The problems of regional study
  • Landscape mapping
  • Construction of hydros in the Far North
  • Cryogeostructures and its regionalizing
  • Gas-hydrate accumulation in subsea permafrost
  • The cryogenic factors in soil-meliosation process
  • Heat flow in the Earth crust and its deep freezing
  • Geocryological study for the Amur-Yakutsk railway construction

The progressive agenda of permafrost research is part of the Academician program of priority studies "Cryogenesis and a Development of the North," as was elaborated by the Scientific Council.

Important meetings held by the Academy included "Site Investigations for Oil and Gas Facilities in Tyumen in April, and "Cryolithogenesis on the Arctic Sea-shelf" in Murmansk during October.

Report from April 1989

The U.S. National Research Council has announced the new membership of the Committee on Permafrost. Members are Chairman Ted Vinson, Oregon State University; David Carter and Erk Reimnitz, U.S. Geological Survey; Chris Heuer , EXXON Production Research; Duane Miller, Miller Associates, Anchorage; Tom Osterkamp, University of Alaska; Don Hayley, EBA Engineering Consultants, Edmonton. The membership of the U . S . Committee/IPA remains the same: Brown (Chairman), Lovell (Vice-chairman), Gryc, Hopkins, Lunardini, and Tart. The Committee on Permafrost cosponsored with the American Society of Civil Engineers a workshop on Permafrost and Climate Change, February 6, 1989, in St. Paul, Minnesota, as part of the ASCE Fifth International Cold Regions Specialty Conference.

The Committee on Frost Action of the Transportation Research Board, U . S . National Research Council, held its annual meeting in Washington, D . C ., January 23, 1989. David Esch, Alaska Department of Transportation, chaired the meeting which discussed the CRREL Frost's Effect Laboratory, frost heave test sites in Colorado, pavement damage during thawing, and research needs on soil stiffness, icing on paving materials, and frost heave models. The incoming chairman is Tom Kinney, University of Alaska.