The Hidden Image of Thawing Permafrost: Mapping Subsurface Properties and Taliks with Remote Sensing (HIT Permafrost)

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region, Gwich'in Settlement Area

Tags: active layer, permafrost, vegetation, ground truth survey, soil sampling

Principal Investigator: Grünberg, Inge (1)
Licence Number: 17024
Organization: Alfred Wegener Institute
Licensed Year(s): 2022
Issued: May 05, 2022
Project Team: Inge Grünberg, Julia Boike, William Cable, Frederieke Miesner, Jennika Hammar, Paloma Saporta, Irena Hajnsek

Objective(s): To collect ground-truth data for two prior airborne campaigns and to verify the interpretation of what the radar data reads.

Project Description: This licence has been issued for the scientific research application No.5196.

The goal for this expedition is to collect ground-truth data for two prior airborne campaigns conducted in 2018 and 2019. The data obtained from radar remote sensing of the area around Trail Valley Creek represent a complex signal from the vegetation, active layer, and permafrost. Based on prior field expeditions, the research team plan to verify the interpretation of what the radar data reads. Additionally, the team plan to maintain existing, long-term observations at the Trail Valley Creek site.

Vegetation description (genus, height) including the ground cover of mosses or lichen (thickness of the layer). Soil stratigraphy description including depths of organic and mineral layers within the active layer using a hand corer of 2.5cm diameter. Sampling the soil using a hand corer of 2.5cm diameter to analyze the soil organic content in the laboratory. Digging 1-10 small and shallow soil pits to measure soil thermal properties and soil moisture of different layers. The soil pits will be refilled afterwards and the original vegetation will be put gently back in place.

All measurements will be performed in a way that minimizes the impact on the environment, "leave no trace", as it is also important that measurements come from undisturbed areas.

The results will be available for everybody. The team will inform the Inuvik community about the project and results in a presentation during the stay.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from August 10, 2022 to September 15, 2022