The Department of Physical Geography, University of Oslo, mapped the lower limit of the permafrost at Sølen. In the eastern part of southern Norway, the limit is as low as about 1100 m asl. in east and north-facing slopes (H. Juliussen, E. S. F. Heggem and B. Etzelmüller). In Dovrefjell and at Jotunheimen at the Juvvasshøe PACE borehole areas, in central southern Norway, collection of data from 13 boreholes continued (K. Isaksen, T. Eiken, R. Ødegård and J. L. Sollid). The drilling operations on Dovrefjell were fi nanced by Forsvarsbygg (O.-E. Martinsen) and the Norwegian Geological Suvrey (B. Follestad).

On Svalbard data from the Janssonhaugen PACE borehole site were collected (K. Isaksen, O. Humlum and J. L. Sollid). In the Møre and Romsdal area of western Norway, and in the Troms and Finnmark areas of northern Norway, ground temperature monitoring were established at selected sites to map the lower limit of the permafrost, and study its infl uence on rock falls (K. Isaksen, L. Blikra and J. L. Sollid).

In Kongsfjorden on Spitsbergen, four coastal erosion monitoring sites were established as part of the IASC ACD (Arctic Coastal Dynamics) project (B. Wangensteen, T. Eiken, R. Ødegård and J. L. Sollid). The Department, in co-operation with the Department of Geography, University of Zurich, carried out three weeks of fi eld work mapping the permafrost distribution in northern Mongolia, Hövsgöl region, collaborating with the IPA (J. Brown), the Long-term biodiversity and ecological monitoring in northern Mongolia project (C. Goulden) and the Mongolian Academy of Science (N. Sharkuu). The field work was founded by the Global Environmental Facility.

The Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI) runs a programme on how permafrost responds to industrial activity and terrestrial pollution. Micro- biological studies in the fi eld and laboratory are combined with thermal fi eld experiments and numerical studies to develop methods and knowledge leading industrial activity in Arctic to sustainable development. An automatic measuring system for microbiological activity in permafrost gives information about changes in bio-production in soil due to pollution and it will also be used for terrestrial monitoring of oil contamination. The project will provide advice and methods for cleaning terrestrial pollution in permafrost, reducing oil pollution and predicting possible consequences of different levels of oil pollution. The project also focuses on geotechnical design for thermal loads. In recent years NGI has adjusted the calculation of frost depth methodology to new numerical tools. With fi eld tests, measurements and with numerical models, the project studies thermal effects of contaminated and not-contaminated soil. A frost susceptibility cell is presently being designed at the NGI laboratory to quantitatively measure frost susceptibility of soil, contaminated and not contaminated. 

Based at the University Courses on Svalbard, UNIS, in Longyearbyen at 78ºN, investigations on a range of geomorphic activities, initiated in 1999, have been continued throughout 2002 as described also on the UNIS webpage. Investigations on ice-wedge dynamics, loess formation and snow cover control on ground temperatures were initiated in 2002 by Hanne H. Christiansen, Department of Physical Geography, University of Oslo, using automatic digital cameras and miniature dataloggers. S. Korsgaard, UNIS/Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen, fi nished a master thesis investigating the evolution of an ice-cored rock glacier, the local meteorological environment and the associated Holocene oxygen isotope stratigraphy in spring 2002.

A research project on cold-climatic bedrock weathering, initiated in 2001, was carried out by Angelique Prick (UNIS/EU). This project, which involves daily monitoring, will continue until summer 2003. Ole Humlum, UNIS has continued measurements of precipitation and temperature at different sites in the landscape, using miniature dataloggers. Two standard meteorological stations measuring air temperature, air humidity and wind speed are operated to obtain information on the effect of altitude and the distance to the sea. One of these stations is located at the PACE borehole on Janssonhaugen. A precipitation-sampling scheme was continued in 2002 by Ole Humlum. This project relates the oxygen isotope signal to air temperature and providing background for interpreting the oxygen isotope content in ice sampled from rock glaciers, ice wedges and glaciers in the Svalbard region. J. Jeppesen, UNIS/Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen, fi nished a master thesis on Svalbard ice-wedges and their isotope variations in spring 2002. Hanne H. Christiansen and Ole Humlum operates two CALM sites near Longyearbyen and Ny Ålesund, representing dry and humid climatic settings, both equipped with data loggers measuring active-layer temperatures. Web: UNIS: Physical Geography, University of Oslo: http://www.geografi

Kaare Flaate (kfl