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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.

Two books prepared by the Council and edited by "Nauka" in Moscow were A Geocryological Prediction by the Development of an Area (Geocryological Prognoz i Osvoenie Territorii) edited b y V. V. Baulin, and A Snow Cover in Mountains and Avalanches (Snejnii Pokrov v Gorach i Lavini) edited by K.F. Voitkovski.

At the Council's March 1988 annual meeting in Moscow, approximately 70 papers and posters were presented. The plenary session included the following paper subjects:

  • The scientific basis of hydros construction in the North
  • The influence of the gas hydrate deposits on the cryogenic structure of the marine sediments
  • Icings and the underground ice
  • The geocryological monitoring by extraction and transportation of gas in permafrost
  • The geochemical methods of prospecting in permafrost
  • A treatment of the frozen rocks
  • Research methods in geocryology

Several meetings concerning geocryologic issues  held during the year. At Tallinn in May the 11 th Baltic Conference on Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering was held. In September, the All Union Conference on the Physics and Mechanics of Ice met in Moscow, and the International Conference on Arctic Research met in Leningrad in December. In October, the officers of the IPA (P.I. Melnikov, V.P. Melnikov, A.P. Gorbunov and N.A. Grave) attended the National Permafrost Conference at the Lanzhou Institute of Glaciology and Geocryology in China, and took part in excursions to the Tien Shan glaciological station. An agreement of common work was made.

Books prepared by the Council and edited by
"Nauka" included this year The Problems of Geocryology: The Russian Papers of the V International Permafrost Conference in Norway (Problemi Geocryologii) edited by P.I. Melnikov, and Thermodynamical problems of Frozen Soil Mechanics  (Thermodynamiceskie Problemi Mechaniki Merzlich Gruntov).

Details of the International Symposium on Geocryological Studies in Arctic Regions held in Yamburg, West Siberia, August 1-10, 1989, are reported in a following section of this Bulletin.

N.A Grave

The Fifth Scientific-Practical Conference "Engineering and Geological Site lnvestigations within the Permafrost Zone" took place October 3-6, 1989, in Magadan, U.S.S.R. It was organized by the Department of Geocryology of Moscow State
University and the Northeastern Trust of Engineering and Geological Site lnvestigations in Magadan, with the help of the Scientific and industrial Association on Construction and Site lnvestigations, according to the drafts of the Scientific Board of the U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences on Engineering Geology and Hydrology, the Academy's Board on Earth Cryology and the
Academy's Lithological Committee.

This conference was attended by 208 specialists from nine trusts of the Engineering and Geological Site lnvestigations located within the permafrost zone, 10 project institutes, 33 research institutes and 26 education institutions from 29 cities in the U.S.S.R. as well as four participants from the U.S. and one from China. Fifteen papers were presented and discussed in the plenary sessions including three American papers. Poster papers were discussed in five parallel sessions, as follows:

  • Scientific foundations, techniques of engineering and geological site investigations
  • Problems of cryolithogenesis in regions of intensive industrial development
  • Experience and techniques of engineering and geological site investigations in permafrost zone
  • Engineering and geological forecast and measures on environmental protection under construction
  • Engineering geocryology and design of structures on perennially frozen soils.

Proceedings were published by Kolyma. Publishers were available to participant at the

E.D. Ershov and V.E. Roujansky