IANIGLA: 30 Years of Basic and Applied Research on Environmental Sciences was published by IANIGLA (Argentine Institute for Snow Research, Glaciology and Environmental Sciences), “Instituto Argentino de Nivología, Glaciología y Ciencias Ambientales.” The book, edited by Dario Trombotto and Ricardo Villalba, is dedicated to the scientific work of Arturo Corte and contains, among the many multidisciplinary topics, seven contributions on geocryology. The book is intended for a wide community of readers. The same Cuyo University Press of Ediunc, Mendoza, published the book written by Juan Schobinger, The Incaic Sanctuary of Mount Aconcagua, about the mummy found in the permafrost at an elevation of 5300 on Mount Aconcagua (6959 m asl, Central Andes of Mendoza.

The research project “GeocriologÌa Argentina General y Aplicada” financed by the National Research Council (CONICET) of Argentina continued. Thermistors were installed on the Morenas Coloradas rock glacier in Vallecitos, Cordón del Plata, Mendoza. A new georeference point in relation to the first one (Balcón I at 3560 m asl) was established (Balcón II) at an elevation of 3770 m. The temperatures of the active layer were measured to the 3-m depth, the top of the permafrost. The new data are integrated into Worldwide Network of Climate Observations (SMOC). Another area studied is at the Laguna del Diamante associated with the Volcano Maipo. An inventory of landforms and cryogenic soils was conducted, and geophysical soundings and soil temperature recording are in preparation.

In co-participation with the LEGAN (Argentine Antarctic Institute, Alberto Aristarain), Mendoza and CNEA (National Commission of Nuclear Energy, José Ruzzante), Buenos Aires, the Geocryology Unit of the IANIGLA joined the international research project “Acoustic emission of the volcano Peteroa.” It is a geophysical, geological and glaciological project with the participation of Italian researchers from the Institute of Acoustics in Rome. The study areas were extended to the south of the province of Mendoza interrelating the topic volcanism (Peteroa is an active volcano) with the Andean periglacial. New sites for the collection of data on climate and cryogenic soil are being selected. These new sites would help to complete the existing cartography, shifting southwards and would be part of the ongoing elaboration of an Argentine and South American map of permafrost and periglacial environments.

In close cooperation with R. Villalba, IANIGLA, Mendoza, the project continued on the integration of instrumental, dendrochronological and glaciological registers and climate variability in Patagonia during the last 1000 years. It was possible to study the periglacial areas corresponding to the transects in the Humid Andes between approximately 39 and 43 S (Volcán Lanín, Cerro Tronador, Cordón del Pico Alto and Cerro Torrecillas), as well as the Patagonian Andes on the Argentine side between approximately 47 and 50S (Cerro San Lorenzo, Sierra de Sangra, Cerro Hatcher, Cerro Fitz Roy, Torre and the borders of the Southern Patagonian Ice Cap). These studies revealed excellent examples of periglacial cryogenic microforms and new examples of rock glaciers.

Since 2001, gemorphologists from the Humboldt University Berlin have been studying periglacial geomorphology and, in particular, rock glaciers of the semi-arid Andes of Central Chile. Alexander Brenning is now modeling rock glacier distribution in relation to the measured velocity by A. Lamm and T. Wittkopf. Additional emphasis is placed on the hydrological significance of rock glaciers in the Andes of Central Chile. First results indicate that in many catchment areas, more water is stored in rock glaciers than in ‘true’ glaciers. There is close contact among the Direcciün General the Aguas, the Catholic University of Santiago, the IANIGLA at Mendoza/Argentina (D. Trombotto), and local contacts.

Dario Trombotto (dtrombot@lab.cricyt.edu.ar)