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National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NASA's Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment


Field Planning 2021

Following consultations with project leads and partner organizations, the 2021 L-band SAR (UAVSAR) and AVIRIS-ng Airborne Remote Sensing Campaigns were postponed until 2022 because of continuing COVID-related travel constraints on conducting the essential supporting fieldwork. Nevertheless, a number of teams have still been able to conduct field work in 2021, as summarized here. This summary is in alphabetical order by PI, and should be considered planned work as field plans can change. Following the 2021 field season, these details will be updated.

PI 2021 Plans Location When
Baltzer Multiple field plans in Northwest Territories Northwest Territories, Canada Throughout summer 2021
Butman Completed a survey of 12 lakes within the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge. Sampling at each lake included carbon chemistry and flux measurements of open water and littoral vegetation.

To capture seasonal gradients, a second campaign is planned for the end of August. In addition, radiocarbon samples of methane and carbon dioxide will be collected at each lake. Clayton Elder will assist with the later field campaign.
Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska June 14 – 21, 2021

August 20 – September 1, 2021

Cook Forest service ground crews will be out this year. They are local to Alaska. Alaska Summer 2021
Douglas Continue long term soil temperature, active layer depth, geophysics, vegetation, coring, and other measurements at Fairbanks area sites: Farmer's Loop, Creamer's Field, Permafrost Tunnel, Bonanza Creek, Tanana Flats Alaska Summer 2021
Eitel Small team to remove instrumentation in Fairbanks and north on Haul Rd towards Toolik. Fairbanks and Dalton Hwy, Alaska April 12 – 19, 2021
Frankenberg Our current plan is to have a field team in the summer (July/August) to take field measurements of needle spectra and needle fluorescence and pigments during the diurnal cycle. Team will use tower measurements from Delta Junction and Old Black Spruce sites. Delta Junction, AK and OBS in Sask. Aug 1 – 10, 2021

NAU GEODE Lab group members Pat Burns and Logan Berner are trekking with Roman Dial for 10 days in the Brooks Range to measure trees that have advanced beyond historical treeline. Cutler Valley, Brooks Range, North Slope, Alaska July 2021
Grosse (AWI) Completed Perma-X airborne campaign with AWI Polar-6 plane over multiple West Alaska regions. Our general focus was on permafrost disturbances (lake change and impacts, coastal erosion, fire scars, thermokarst initiation and coastal wetlands, thaw slumps, and beaver ponds and dams). Instrumentation includes the DLR Modular Aerial Camera System (MACS), a high-res stereo camera system with RGB and NIR (~10-20 cm ground resolution at our flying altitudes); and a fully waveform Riegl Q680i LiDAR. Kotzebue (base): Baldwin Peninsula, Northern Seward Peninsula, Central Seward Peninsula, Noatak Valley, Kobuk and Selawik regions

25 June – 12 July 2021
Hensley/ Naiara Interest in fieldwork in Delta Junction and BERMS.    
Huemmrich Tweedie team will have a skeleton crew that Huemmrich can use to do some sampling.

Sarah Sackett will collect some field measurements for the team as well.
Samples from Alaska will be sent to Maryland for measurements.


July 2021

July 2021
Iwahana Displacement, thaw depth, and soil moisture survey along the Dalton between Ice Cut and Sagwon. We will also conduct similar fieldwork in Seward Penn. (Kougarok) with NGEE collaborators. Alaska (Dalton / Seward Penn.) Aug 14–23 (Dalton), Aug 30 – Sep 3
Kirchner Automated continuous monitoring, and maybe vegetation field crews in summer 2021. Monitoring program plans to go to the field sites this summer and will make depth to frozen ground measurements. There are also plans for vegetation monitoring in Katmai and Lake Clark. Southwest Alaska Throughout 2021
Maguire Joining Frankenberg team for leaf–level spectral observations and calibration of tower instrument at Delta Junction Delta Junction, AK August 1 – 10, 2021
Miller Katey Walter Anthony is doing various types of fieldwork related to methane. Exploring a summer field trip along the Haul Road between Fairbanks and Prudhoe Bay; we are also interested in exploring options for field work in the Minto Flats.

Clayton Elder will be assisting with methane flux measurement and 14C sampling at Big Trail Lake and a series of lakes in the Yukon Flats (Collaboration with Butman team)
Fairbanks region – Big Trail Lake

Yukon Flats
March 14 – 29, 2021

August 15 – Sept. 1
Myers-Smith, Isla (Team Shrub) I have a 2-3 person crew in the Kluane Region collecting hyperspectral leaf samples and conducting phenology and plant trait measurements (with a focus on capturing shrub leaf spectra across the growing season in relation to plant phenology) in the boreal and alpine in collaboration with the Canadian Airborne Observatory Project and Phil Townsend's ABoVE project. Kluane Lake, Yukon

17 June – 17 August, 2021
Natali/Watts Small team to inspect Soil Respiration Station instrumentation in Alaska, may go into the field for a short time.

Christina Minions will visit Eight Mile, Bonanza Creek, Hess Creek soil respiration sites in May and September/October 2021.

Jennifer Watts & Claudia Czimczik + 2 grad students at Hess Creek burned/unburned sites to install 14C sampling wells

Possible SRS visit and data download at YKD sites, depending on regional covid-19 status and logistics.
Alaska May 20 – 24, 2021

August 1 – 31, 2021

September 1– October 15, 2021

August 16–19, 2021

September 2021
Oechel   Ivotuk July–August 2021
Potter Dr. Diane Huebner (2020-2022 NPP with me). Diane Hubner is a postdoc on this project who lives in Alaska, as does her field assistant. She will visit Bonanza Creek and other areas (including areas disturbed by fire) during 2021 and 2022. Project Title: Assessing resilience in Alaskan boreal forest to climate-wildfire interactions Bonanza Creek and other areas (including areas disturbed by fire) Throughout 2021
Quinton Dehcho Collaborative on Permafrost Scotty Creek and multiple sites throughout the Dehcho (NWT) region. March – September, 2021.
Rocha Thaw depth and eddy covariance fluxes at 3 sites within the southern end of the Anaktuvuk River fire scar (see Rocha, A.V. and G.R. Shaver (2011) Post-fire energy exchange in arctic tundra: the importance and climatic implications of burn severity. Global Change Biology. 17(9): 2831-2841, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2486.2011.02441.x. for site information) North Slope Alaska Summer 2021
Schaefer The Schaefer team will do ALT and soil moisture surveys around Fairbanks.We will survey Bonanza Creek, Delta Junction, the permafrost tunnel, Creamer's Field, and several other sites around Fairbanks. Bonanza Creek, Delta Junction, the permafrost tunnel, Creamer's Field August 12 – 22, 2021
Turner Various types of fieldwork related to hydrology and permafrost, carbon dynamics, and disturbance. Old Crow Flats, Yukon Summer 2021 – if able to get a field team into the field
Watts, Yang, Epstein Soil moisture probe and active layer probe for use during summer field season. We will install two SIF instruments, one for the deciduous site, and one for the evergreen site. We will measure leaf-level fluorescence, canopy SIF, and canopy reflectance.

Normalized Microwave Reflection Index data from tower-mounted GPS in deciduous and coniferous forests (above and below canopy) collected.
Caribou Poker Flats, Alaska May 4 – September 27, 2021

May – December 2021
Watts/Farina PhD student Mary Farina + assistant at Big Trail Lake near Fairbanks. Multispectral drone surveys for water/veg mapping. CO2 & CH4 surveys using Licor & chamber. Weather station data + soil temp/moisture data collection. Alaska July 1-20, 2021
Welker Chamber CO2 fluxes in ambient, deep and shallow snow treatments with and without ITEX warming OTC's from tussock tundra.Flux measurements are 2 x per week plus measurements of phenology and root growth with mini-rhizotrons. Toolik Lake, Field station mid-June to September 2021
Wilson/NGEE Collaborators Possible plans to take a small group to Seward Penn by late summer.