Modelling Temperature and Heat Fluxes of Great Bear Lake

Regions: Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: physical sciences, climate change, limnology, water temperature, hydrography

Principal Investigator: Schertzer, William M. (2)
Licence Number: 14328
Organization: Environment Canada
Licensed Year(s): 2009 2008
Issued: Apr 22, 2008
Project Team: William M. Schertzer (PI and Physical Limnology, Environment Canada), David D.C. Lam (Integrated Modelling, Environment Canada), Ram Yerubandi (Hydrodynamics, Environment Canada), Eddy Carmack (Physical Oceanography, Institute of Ocean Sciences), David A. Swayne (Computer Science, University of Guelph), Wayne R. Rouse (Advisor Member - Physical Climatology, McMaster University), Peter D. Blanken (Advisor Member - Climatology (mass exchange) , University of Colorado (Boulder)), John Gyakum (Advisor Member-Synoptic and Dynamic Meteorology, McGill University)

Objective(s): The objectives of this project are to measure meteorology, heat fluxes, and physical limnological components of Great Bear Lake; to quantify the variability in these characteristics; to model the thermal structure of the lake under current and changed climate conditions; and to assess the effect of climate on the temperature structure and heat fluxes of the lake.

Project Description: The objectives of this project are to measure meteorology, heat fluxes, and physical limnological components of Great Bear Lake; to quantify the variability in these characteristics; to model the thermal structure of the lake under current and changed climate conditions; and to assess the effect of climate on the temperature structure and heat fluxes of the lake.

This research is part of the IPY-BIONET investigation. Field measurements will begin in June. The climate station at Deline operates continuously year-round (since 2004) with 10 minute meteorological and radiation flux observations. Measurements include air temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and direction, atmospheric pressure, precipitation, and solar and longwave radiation fluxes. Profiles of water temperature will be measured using in situ temperature moorings at 4 sites in the Keith Arm (3 summer moorings and 1 winter mooring). Moorings will be deployed with the DRRC 40ft vessel. Water temperature observations in the other parts of the lake not accessible by this vessel will be deployed by float plane. The deepest part of the lake in the McTavish Arm (400+m depth) will be included. Detailed observations of lake temperature will be made to assess the convective activity of the lake. Spatial variability of the surface water temperature will be derived from satellite observations. Historical information on the dates of ice formation and breakup will be used for comparison with simulations.
Local businesses will provide accommodations and supplies. Presentations and summaries of results will be given to the community if desired.
Fieldwork will be conducted from June 16 to December 31, 2008 at Great Bear Lake, with meteorological sites at Deline (old airport site, 65o 11’ 32” N, 123o 25’15”W) and Lionel Island (65o 23’ 5” N, 122o 02’ 59”W), temperature moorings at (65o 11’ 00”N, 122o 08’ 00”W), (65o 10’ 00”N, 121o 22’ 00”W), (65o 24’ 00”N, 122o 07’ 00”W), and (65o 24’ 00”N, 122o 07’ 00”W), and APEX Profilers at (65o 45” 00’N, 121o 20’ 00”W), (66o 19’ 00”N, 121o 11’ 00”W), and (66o 04’ 00”N, 119o 13’ 00”W), and KOEYE Mooring at (66o 04’ 00”N, 118o 10’ 00”W). Deline, NWT is the Base location (65o 11’ 32” N, 123o 25’15”W).