Many scientists of the German Permafrost Community are still absorbed in evaluation of the data from the German Geoscientific Spitzbergen Expeditions that took place between 1990 and 1992 with more than 45 participants. Two preliminary volumes containing results appeared in 1992 (Stuttgart) and 1993 (Basel). Several papers with detailed results and large-scale color maps have been finished recently and are being prepared for printing in spring 1994 in a volume of Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie (Supplementband).
German permafrost studies are continuing mainly in the Alps (Germany, Switzerland) and in the Andes (Argentina). In addition, several German permafrost scientists have been active at international conferences and seminars, and some joined the post-conference excursions to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and to Urumqi-Xinjiang. At the "Joint Russian-American Seminar on Cryopedology and Global Change" in Pushchino in November 1992, several German papers presented results of microbiological, geochemical, pedological and paleopedological studies in Siberia and Antarctica. At the Sixth International Permafrost Conference in Beijing, German contributions mainly presented results of the Svalbard expeditions.
On the engineering side, and with respect to seasonal frost effects, German research is related to the frost susceptibility of mineral sealing layers for landfill lining systems. This problem is only relevant during the construction period. The 5th International Symposium on Ground Freezing will be held in Nancy, France, in October 1994. For further information please contact Prof. Michel Fremond, Chef du Service, Laboratoire central des Ponts et Chaussées, Scé. de Mathematiques, 58, Blvd. Lefèvre, 75732 Paris, Cedex 15, France.
Prepared by Lorenz King and H.J.L. Jessberger