NPEO 2003 Planning


Reports from the NPEO 2003 Deployment

The North Pole Environmental Observatory 2003 and Arctic Freshwater Switchyard 2003 fieldwork is over.  Everyone is safely home!  We are grateful to the National Science Foundation for their support of the NPEO and the Arctic Freshwater Switchyard projects (Grants OPP-9910305 and OPP-0230427). 

It’s been fun receiving reports from the field and passing them on to you.  This message concludes the reports for this year, but take a look at our NPEO web page now and again to see what’s new, including pictures:

Please check out the Seattle Times and the New York Times papers of 5/13/03.  Both include NPEO stories.

Tuesday, May 13, 2003________________________________________________________________________

New York Times
Doing science at the top of the world: A winch problem was just one of myriad challenges, large and small, that confronted scientists who recently ventured to the North Pole to decipher disturbing changes in the polar ice, ocean and atmosphere. Unlike almost anywhere else on the planet, this environment required a research team that combined the intellectual power of scientists with the brute strength of furniture movers, the wile of backcountry mechanics, the courage (or recklessness) of extreme athletes and the willingness to carry a shotgun to ward off polar bears. Named are:

-- Jamie Morison, oceanographer with the Applied Physics Laboratory
-- Neil Swanberg, program director with National Science Foundation
-- Eric Boget, ocean engineer with the Applied Physics Laboratory
-- Jim Osse, ocean engineer with
the Applied Physics Laboratory
-- Jim Johnson, ocean engineer with the Applied Physics Laboratory
-- Tim Stanton, oceanographer with Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Seattle Times
Scientists go to extremes to study warming, currents: University of Washington-led researchers have journeyed to the center of the Arctic ice pack, taking water samples and planting scientific buoys. If all goes well, the buoys will drift with the ice pack for the next year, serving as remote scientific sentinels. This is a reprint of the May 5 article by Dallas Morning News reporter Alex Witze who visited the scientists at the North
Pole, a trip arranged by UW and NSF. Named are:

-- Jim Overland, PMEL
-- Tim Stanton, Naval Postgraduate School
-- Jamie Morison, University of Washington
-- Sigrid Salo, PMEL

Email from Jamie Morison, Seattle, May 13, 2003

Sue this is an update of the last couple of days of the 2003 deployment.

5/2 - Kelly Roger, Mike Dan arrive Alert unpack equipment - Twin Otter and Helo arrive
5/3 - Twin Otter deploys Petterman group, weather too bad for Helo ops
5/4 - Weather day
5/5 - Twin Otter deploys Petterman group, weather too bad for Helo ops
5/6 - Good weather, Helo ops begin - Check fit CTD - Hdro gear in Twin Otter, fly out and do Station 4 through 4+ meters of ice.
5/7 - Helo Ops - Twin Otter Hydro at station 5, problems with winch gearbox/motor, but successfully complete station. Repair winch at night.
5/8 - Helo Ops - Twin Otter Hydro Station 6 - Twin Otter makes afternoon evening flight to deploy fuel cache
5/9 - Helo departs - Twin Otter CTD -Hydro at Station 1 (North Pole) and Station 2 (60 miles south). Stops at fuel cache coming and going, arrive home at midnight, pack all night.
5/10- Finish pallet load and fly to Edmonton via Eureka, Resolute, Cambridge Bay, Yellowknife

All stations were completed as planned, buoys all working in good ice, and mooring successfully recovered and redeployed.

Email from Mike Steele, Seattle, May 13, 2003

The first year of Arctic Freshwater Switchyard operations is now complete.  We completed 10 stations across the continental slope north of Alert, Ellesmere Island, Canada, including measurements of temperature, salinity, currents, and dissolved nutrients.  We took these measurements over 3 beautiful days (May 6, 7, and 8) with warmish temperatures (average of perhaps -10 degrees Celsius) and little wind, although with some ice fog.  Our helicopter pilot, John Innis of Universal Labrador Helicopters, was an outstanding member of our team, assisting with the measurements and landing the helo in whatever crazy places we needed him to.  Of course there were some glitches with the instrumentation (cold batteries, freezing spigots, etc) but very preliminary analysis indicates that we got all of what we came for.  The arctic is a beautiful place!  The humble word "ice" doesn't begin to describe all of the amazing forms that can be seen (and climbed, and tasted) as one walks around on the Arctic Ocean.  -Mike Steele

(The 2003 Arctic Freshwater Switchyard team was Principal Investigator Mike Steele, field and computer scientist Roger Andersen, and helo pilot John Innis. Field/computer scientist Wendy Ermold also provided Seattle-based assistance.)

Email from Roger Andersen, Friday-Saturday 9-10 May,
Jim Innis left for Alert in the Jet Long Ranger Friday morning

With 16 hours in the Twin Otter, Jamie and Kelly got the last two Hydro/Chemistry stations, including the one at the Pole.  Returning in deteriorating weather, the Twin found the fuel cache by the positions reported from the borrowed>Environment Canada Argos buoy put out to mark the position.  The weather office in Alert permitted us to access those Argos positions in near real time.  They landed back in Alert 10 minutes after midnight through a thin ground fog.

Then we pulled an all-nighter packing everything not urgently needed onto a Herc pallet for backhaul by the 109th in mid-June, and everybody took off in the Twin for Resolute at 8AM Saturday.  Refueling in Eureka, we reached Resolute with one hour to spare to connect with the flights south.  Kelly immediately took a flight to the village of Grise Fjord to brief that community about the USCGC Healy cruise this coming summer.  Andy, Jamie,
Mike, Dan, Roger and Twin Otter copilot Dave took the Borek King Air to Cambridge Bay, connecting with a scheduled 737 flight to Edmonton, and everyone got where they were going over the weekend.

Andy Heiberg has a one-page spreadsheet laying out the entire plan for this year's operation.  Demonstrating a logistical wizardry that we all have grown accustomed to, it all worked.

Email from Roger Andersen,
Thursday 8 May, Alert_________________________________________________

The Twin CTD winch required a late-night motor and gearbox swap, justifying the spare we have sent back and forth for several years.  This was a mechanical retrofit requiring a good deal of ingenuity by Jamie and Ken Borek and mechanic Paul Richter.  Both aircraft were off Alert at 0900 Local this morning. 

The Twin Otter's first flight was to re-visit old Station 6 at 85 North and 67 West with the complete CTD/Chemistry treatment.  Mike flew along to learn about the Twin operation.  Then the Twin made a second flight this afternoon to put in a fuel cache, temporarily marked with Argos buoy 5313, for the flight to the Pole tomorrow.

Mike CTDing

Roger and Dan took the helo on a final day of Switchyard CTDing starting two degrees of latitude NNE of Alert and following the 600 meter isobath west.  They had a fairly adventurous day, first finding no cracks close to the initial position, then getting three stations spread out along a gigantic open lead that followed their survey line, and finally dipping into some ice fog to land in a region of many small floes, all freely moving.  Twice the instrument was in the water and soaking at 10 meters, when ice motion posing a threat to either the helo or CTD persuaded them
to bail out and take off. 

A big part of this trip was providing Dan with a chance to collect video for his project, and for that this day was made
to order.  Together with his Twin flight yesterday, he has more video than he can use, and his adventures are not over.  He and Mike expect to fly to Resolute with the helicopter tomorrow.
-Roger     2115 EST  Alert

Phone call from Andy Heiberg, Thursday, 5/8/03, Alert, 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time

The weather is beautiful. 
Jamie and Kelly are out doing the southern most CTD station at about 85N.  When they return, the Twin Otter will take the fuel cache out for Friday’s CTD stations. 

Mike and Roger are done with their main Switchyard stations and are very happy.  Today Dan and Roger went out in the helo to get additional Switchyard stations.

If all goes well and the weather continues to cooperate, Mike and Dan will ride the helo to Resolute on Friday, and arrive in Seattle on Sunday.

Phone call from Andy Heiberg, Wednesday 5/7/03, Alert ___________________________________________

On Tuesday the weather turned good and Mike Steele and Roger Andersen were able to go out on the helo and accomplished three CTD stations and surface water samples. 

Kelly Falkner and Jamie Morison went out in the Twin Otter and did one hydrochemical survey (expendable CTD, a deep CTD cast, and water sampling).  They had to drill through 13 feet of ice.  They arrived back at Alert at midnight.

Today, 5/7/03, Roger and Mike are out again on the helo and hope to complete four or five CTD stations.

Kelly, Jamie, and Dan Dyer are out on the Twin Otter and will do three more stations closest to Alert.  Dan is busy filming and interviewing everyone.

On Thursday a fuel cache will be established halfway between Alert and the Pole; and on Friday, weather permitting, Jamie and Kelly will do their last two stations.

Andy keeps busy tracking the helo and Twin Otter, and communicating with them via radio.

Their estimated date to leave Alert is Saturday, May 10.

Email from Roger Andersen, Tuesday-Wednesday 6-7 May Alert

All of a sudden Tuesday we awoke to flyable weather, and everyone leaped into action. The NPEO CTD-Chemistry Survey (Jamie and Kelly) ran into some unexpected surprises in the difference between this year's Ken Borek Twin Otter and the Firstair Twins we have used up to this year.  After a burst of Morison carpentry, they were off just after noon and went for Station 4 way up at 87 North and 90 West.  They found very thick ice.  Jamie took one Jiffy cutter bit and 4 three-foot extensions and needed them all to get through where the Twin landed.  But they got both CTD and chemistry at Station 4, at a cost of getting back to Alert at 1130PM.  Wednesday they got Station 5 near 86 North and 70 West, and Dan went along and took a lot of video footage.

Mike and Roger had two wonderful days extending the Switchyard transect in the Jet Ranger, collecting seven CTD stations and four XCPs.  The variety of ice dynamics was striking, especially in thinly frozen leads.  One region of nearly open water was over a mile across.   Finding small leads to lower instruments through proved fairly easy, especially with pilot John able to plant the helo wherever we wanted.
-Roger    Wednesday evening

Monday, May 5, 2003_________________________________________________________________________

Dallas Morning News:

Arctic ice camp provides window on climate change

Scientists go to extremes to study warming, currents: University of
Washington-led researchers have journeyed to the center of the Arctic ice
pack, taking water samples and planting scientific buoys. If all goes well,
the buoys will drift with the ice pack for the next year, serving as remote
scientific sentinels. Named are:
-- Jim Overland, PMEL
-- Tim Stanton, Naval Postgraduate School
-- Jamie Morison, University of Washington / PSC
-- Sigrid Salo, PMEL
-- Takashi Kikuchi and Hirokatsu Uno, JAMSTEC

Email from Roger Andersen, Monday 5/5/03 Alert, 1600 LOCAL (Eastern)

The days are starting to blur together, since falling snow and poor visibility has kept the helicopter on the ground again today.  Still, the weather was a little better this morning, enough for the Twin Otter to get off for the Petermann Glacier.  Even though the wind picked up this afternoon, the Twin got back in here and crabbed out again in a cross wind for their (presumably last) flight to the Glacier guys.  So now, once it gets back, we can begin loading and preparing the Twin for Jamie and Kelly's CTD operations.  This involves anchoring the winch in the back door, setting up the bottle rack forward and loading the generator and Herman Nelson heater, not to mention familiarizing our new Ken Borek crew with the CTD setup.

This weather has the distinct feel of the very beginning of summer: warmer, foggier, more snow, distinctly May rather than March-April.  For the Switchyard helo survey, Mike and Roger are as ready to go as they can be.  Mike may be showing slight symptoms of excessive eagerness (barking, wagging tail).  Kelly's Dissolved Oxygen Laboratory has been fully functional for some time.  We have a helicopter pilot, John Innis from Goose Bay, with 22,000 hours in rotary winged aircraft, but he needs a visible horizon, both here at Alert and to the north.  Further evidence of the smallness of the world among high latitude aircrews presented itself when we discovered that the father of our Twin's co-pilot is a long-standing friend of John's and holds a similar number of helicopter hours.

Dan, our video guy, is more than ready for something to happen too, and he has profitably spent the time thinking up questions to ask. So, we're standing by.    -Roger

Email from Roger Andersen, Sunday 5/4/03,1600 Eastern Time, Alert________________________________

Steadily falling snow with low visibility and contrast for a second day.  No flying today, although holding out for a possible evening Twin flight to Petermann Glacier.  Preparations are underway in the Spinnaker Bldg. for Jamie and Kelly.  Twin Otter CTD survey flights to follow remaining Petermann flights.

Successfully got positions from Sigrid and Cache buoy from ARGOS.

Email from Roger Andersen, Saturday 5/3/03, Alert________________________________________________

Morning low clouds and light snow, bad enough to prevent the helicopter from flying.  The Twin got off by 9AM and apparently did succeed in landing the Petermann Glacier group at their campsite over in Greenland.  They are scheduled for several more flights over the next couple of days.

PM, we are headed down to the ramp to prepare for the first Switchyard flight, and especially to see what we can load in the helicopter.

Hey, everything fits in the helo!  Falling snow.  Set up the Iridium with remote antenna in Spinnaker Bldg. and am using it to send this message.

May 2, 2003, Email from Jim Johnson upon his return home to Seattle_______________________________

April 30th brought about the completion of the 2003 field season of the North Pole Long Term Environmental Observatory.  A preliminary look at the recovered records indicates a 100% data return.

The recovery of the 2002 mooring was a little more difficult this year than last.  We encountered more broken-up ice and less of the large pans of flat ice. The divers (Eric Boget and Jim Osse) had about a 40ft. swim to the top floatation buoy.  The diving portion went smoothly due to the detailed preparation by Mike Ohmart.

About 70% of the way through the recovery, three of the bolts that connect the gear box to the capstan head shaft on our A-frame system sheared.  If it hadn't been for the combined expertise of Mike Ohmart, Eric Boget and Jim Osse we would have had a very difficult time finishing the recovery of the 2002 mooring, and we would not have been able to deploy the new 2003 mooring.

The mooring team performed admirably, and I could not have had a better group of professional colleagues to pull off a troubled recovery and a flawless deployment.

Thank you to Mike, Eric and Jim for a great trip.
Best regards,

Email from Roger Andersen Friday, 5/2/03, Alert

1 hr, 40 min flight in the 109th C-130, Thule to Alert brought us here at 8:30AM local, which is on Eastern Standard Time (Seattle+3, GMT-4).  Beautiful weather.  Andy and Jamie were already here.  The afternoon was spent breaking down the pallets of our cargo at the Spinnaker Building by the ramp.  The Twin Otter arrived from Resolute in mid-afternoon; the Bell 206 Long Ranger (C-GNOS) did not get in until 11PM, due to marginal weather at the Resolute end.

Email from Dan Dyer, Friday 5/2/03, Alert

Things are going well. The weather in Alert is great for flying.  Helo work should start tomorrow and once the group (not part of NPEO or Switchyard) headed to Petermann Glacier on Greenland is in place our Twin Otter work will start. Hopefully the weather will stay. It's been nice, sunny and around -10 to -5 C.  Everyone is in good spirits and looking forward to the next few days. It is beautiful to see the wide expanse of ice from the base. Here is a link to my video about the fun I've been having.

Thursday, May 1, 2003, Canadian Forces Station, Alert, phone call from Andy Heiberg__________________

The remaining North Pole team, Andy, Jamie, Sigrid, Dean, Takashi and Hirokatsu, left the Borneo runway at 3 a.m. Moscow time, on May Day, 5/1/03. Jamie and Andy jumped off in Alert.  Sigrid, Dean, Takashi and Hirokatsu went on to Resolute.  The folks in Resolute will leave this afternoon for Yellowknife, and then on home via various routings, although Dean will stay on in Yellowknife for a couple of days to take care of equipment shipments.

Andy reports he has had a shower and eaten.  He and Jamie are headed off to their rooms for a nap. 

All installations are working and all are in good locations.  All done.  All pleased.  Everything went exceedingly well scientifically.

Email from Roger Andersen, Thursday 5/1/03, Thule Air Base

2.5 hour flight from Kangerlussuaq to Thule in good weather.  We were shocked to discover temperatures at the freezing point here.  They say 31F, but there is standing muddy water on all the roadways.  Reasonable flying weather though, so there is every reason to hope the hop to Alert will happen on schedule tomorrow morning.  I spoke with a Canadian Boxtop pilot who was up there today, and he says it was -23 (probably C) and that Boxtop will finish up tomorrow.  We are hoping it stays cold, and that the polar fogs of May hold off for another week.  Besides our acute need for good flying weather, Mike hates summer-like data subject to all the melting processes.  That's about it, except that Kelly reports the Base Gym here has a magnificent sauna, and she had it all to herself. I don't really expect to get this out tonight, but there is a rumor that the base library is open and might have Internet access.  So I'll go check it out.  Cheers, Roger
Yes, the Thule AB Library is the ticket at a dollar per minute!!

Wednesday, April 30, 2003, 7:30 p.m. Moscow Time, (8:30 a.m. PDT),
Phone call from Andy Heiberg

Andy is sitting in a cold hut out at the runway site.  Sigrid went to the JAMSTEC site to calibrate the thermistors and finished at 5 a.m.  Can hear the helo now bringing Sigrid back.  Jamie, Dean, Takashi, and Hirokatsu are coming in now from the JAMSTEC deployment site over at the Lomonosov Ridge.

Have completed all work.  Last 2 days have been warm and springy, not too windy, overcast with no shadows.

All will leave Borneo in 6 hours, at 1:30 in the morning (Moscow time). 
Weather at Alert is not so good so they might go directly to Resolute.  Jamie and Andy will then go to Alert on the Twin Otter.

Wedesday , April 30, 2003, Email from Roger Andersen, 8 a.m. local time (3:10 a.m. PDT) Kangerlussuaq (Sondrestrom), Greenland

Today was even warmer, feeling like 60s F when the breeze wasn't blowing, which it didn't very often.  Mike and I slept in, while Kelly and Dan took off after breakfast to see if they could reach the ice cap, 15 miles away, on their mountain bikes.  Mike and I pedaled out of town the same direction right after lunch.  A few miles along the road, we stashed the bikes and walked up a prominent peak called "Sugarloaf" which provides a wonderful viewpoint of the ice cap up-valley and the sea ice-covered fjord down-valley beyond the runway.  Riding back to Kangerlussuaq on the rocky, bumpy road, Mike provided the official quote of the day, suitable to go alongside Jamie's depression at the mooring camp:  "My butt hurts!"  Kelly and Dan had made it all the way to the great glacier.  Dan reports that Kelly left him in the dust. (Actually, he insists she wasn't THAT far ahead of him.)

Mike on Sugarloaf Mountain
Roger on Sugarloaf Mountain

If the weather holds, we will be off to Thule in the morning.  Our pallet is staged on the ramp for a takeoff tomorrow at 9AM.

It seems worthwhile to repeat how well set up the VECO Polar Resources support operation is for Greenland science.  This internet connection is a good example.  (VECO provides Arctic logistics and other services for field work supported by the National Science Foundation.)

Please thank Wendy Ermold (APL Physicist) for the color bathymetry chart, which we were able to upload and print.  Apparently the 109th guys tried to set up a direct flight to Alert tomorrow, but ran into immovable obstacles like Boxtop (refueling operations at Alert) and the runway schedule at Thule, so the basic schedule stands. No guarantees we can provide this much daily info from Thule or Alert.
Cheers, Roger

Email from Roger Andersen Tuesday 4/29 Kangerlussuaq (Sondestrom)

A positively warm day, call it in the 50s F, only partly cloudy with little wind.  First order of business after trying to catch up on some sleep was to look for our shipment, which was promptly found in Veco's warehouse.  They had not heard it was coming, but took care of it just fine.  Everything is here, assuming Dean made a box for the Herman Nelson heater which I didn't know about, but there is one in the shipment exactly the right size.  The Herc had a great day for flying.  

Dan flying in the Hercules C-130

Mike next to mudflats
Dan, Mike and I, with 2 guys from the National Geographic took off on a bike, and reached a frozen lake SW of town.  They danced around on the lake while I tried to snooze in the sun. On the way back, Mike and Dan peeled off to try to bike down the mud flat between the bridge by town down toward the fjord.  It turns out there is a quicksand hazard out there, and the Danish authorities came out with flashing lights and bullhorns ordering them back. Not very abashed, Mike reports the presence of Pingos out in the mud flats. (1. A hill of soil-covered ice pushed up by hydrostatic pressure in an area of permafrost, or 2. A hill of similar origin remaining after the melting of permafrost (Inuit pinguq).)

Kelly rode a bike out the opposite direction from town and made it up Sugarloaf Mountain with a nice view of the edge of the glacier.  More tomorrow, etc.  Cheers, Roger

Tuesday, April 29, 2003, call from Jim Johnson to Knut Aagaard

Jim just called from Resolute.  The ULS memory banks looked full, but Jim was unable to plot past the first one.  The ADCP appeared OK also, and the compass was covering all the quadrants.  The fall pull down appears to have been some 40-50 m and had notable speeds throughout the water column, though higher in the upper layers.

All in all, a very professional and satisfying job that they did for the project!

Tuesday, April 29, 2003, 7:45 a.m. Moscow Time, Phone call from Andy Heiberg

The wind isn’t too bad, temperature good.  Andy, Sigrid Salo and Jim Osse are at the runway camp.  They have two more buoys to deploy and Sigrid’s thermistors.  Andy talked to Jamie and the JAMSTEC buoy is in.  Andy is optimistic that they will be able to pick up Jamie, Takashi, Hirokatsu, and Dean in 24 hours.  They’ll be cozy at the runway camp for a night or two.  Hopefully, the weather will continue to cooperate and they will all leave the North Pole area on Thursday evening (Moscow time).

Monday, April 28, 7 p.m. Moscow time, Phone call from Jamie Morison______________________________

The mooring team recovery and deployment work is complete.  They took off Sunday night with Tim Stanton and the reporters, and are now in Resolute. Tim put his buoy in at the Borneo runway site.  All working good.

This morning Andy Heiberg, Jim Osse and Sigrid Salo went over to the Borneo runway site. 

Jamie, Dean Stewart, Takashi Kikuchi and Hirokatsu Uno took the helo with the JAMSTEC equipment and one of Sigrid's buoys to 88 deg 34.7 min north and 167 deg 54.2 min east.  They have one helo hut up with heat.  Jamie just made coffee and Dean has successfully found tie wraps.  The JAMSTEC folks have set up a warm storage/work tent and are cutting holes.  Things are going well and within 48 hours the buoy deployments for both JAMSTEC and Sigrid should be complete, although the JAMSTEC folks are working at a feverish pace and may finish sooner than that, and will then return to the runway camp Moscow time tomorrow night. Weather has been perfect, warm, clear, but it is now starting to blow, visibility is going down a little.

The Borneo camp huts were great this year, central heating blew warm air into 2 adjacent huts.  The helos have been amazingly capable carrying heavy loads, including up to 14 people (can carry 40 skiers and their equipment).  Fuel problems have been squared away.  Four new drums of fuel will serve as a fuel cache for the CTD activity.  Additional fuel is being brought in.

The reporters were real happy, both thought it was great.  The human-interest elements might have risen up above science issues when Mrs. Russia (like Miss America) came out to Borneo.  The prize for the Russian contest winner was a trip to the North Pole.  She wore an ermine cloak and tiara. 

The same Russians who built the runway last year are there again this year.  They are good fellows to work with.  On Easter Jamie and Dean were invited to a 6 a.m. Russian Orthodox Easter service including a 3-gun salute.  They shared a special cake with decorated hard-boiled eggs, then exchanged patches.  Dean also got instructions on driving the Russian tractor.

There are news articles about the North Pole Environmental Observatory in today's New York Times, and yesterday's Dallas Morning News.  Photographed people include Jim Osse (with Santa Claus and runner-up Mrs. Russia 2003), and Jim Johnson, just doing his job.  Quotes include Jamie, Jim J., Jim O., Knut, and Tim Stanton.\/042703dnnatnp.700f9.html

Email from Roger Andersen Monday 4/28 Kangerlussuaq (Sondestrom)

Last night we assembled at the Ramada Inn in Schenectady: Mike Steele, Dan Dyer, and Roger Andersen from the Polar Science Center at the UW and Kelly Falkner from Oregon State. Today we took a 5:45 C-130 flight from Stratton Air Base in Schenectady with the 109th nonstop to this place.  Pretty painless.  Either C-130s have gotten quieter or my hearing has deteriorated.  The aircraft had some 23 passengers headed for various sites in Greenland, many apparently for Summit Camp up on the icecap.

Remarkably enough, they knew we were coming, and the plan is as advertised, which means we will be here 2 days and 3 nights before going on to Thule Thursday and Alert the next day.  The Herc has 2 days of flying from here to catch up on weather-delayed flights within Greenland.  At least, that's the plan.  It is not cold here, probably not even freezing, but looks like it was up until about yesterday, and with the enormous Greenland glacier just over the hill, it could get cold again in a hurry.  Lots of daylight. Quarters are typically Arctic, college dorm-like.  We had Musk Ox for dinner.  The rooms wired for both 110 and 220.
Veco runs a well-oiled machine here, complete to some mountain bikes available for loan.  They also have a dial-up internet connection, so I can compose this on my laptop and take it to the internet machine on a floppy.  Dan can hardly believe he's in Greenland.

Saturday, April 26, 2003_____________________________________________________________________

Kelly Falkner, Mike Steele, Roger Andersen and Dan Dyer all left Seattle bound for Schenectady, New York, and the Stratton Air Guard Base for a 109th Airlift Wing flight to Greenland, then on to Canadian Forces Station (CFS) Alert.  Alert is on Canada's Ellesmere Island and is the closest human outpost to the North Pole

Jamie, Kelly and Mike will carry out the NPEO Hydrochemical Survey by Twin Otter aircraft between Alert and the North Pole. Mike and Roger will carry out a 120-km north-south oriented CTD section centered on 84N, 65W using a helicopter. For more details about their work, please see

Dan Dyer intends to video tape polar scientists at work and produce the film as a DVD for distribution to high school students. The film will be Dan’s final project for a Master of Communications in Digital Media degree at the UW.

Friday Evening, April 25, 2003 Phone call from Jim Johnson to Knut Aagaard _______________________

Mooring NP03 was deployed at 2359 25 April UTC in 4301 meters of water.  That puts the ULS 55 m below the surface.  The mooring went in quickly, in eight hours, and without wire angle.

Friday, April 25, 2003 Phone call from Jamie Morison, at Borneo, 7:10 a.m. Moscow time

Jamie and the media are heading out to the mooring camp for the new mooring deployment.  The mooring work should be done in about 12 hours.  They had some winch trouble during the mooring recovery but our resourceful fellows got it fixed. 

After the two-hour trip to the mooring camp Jamie will stop at the runway camp to help with buoy deployments.  Borneo is split into two camps.  A small runway camp is approximately 7 kilometers from the main Borneo camp. Jamie and Andy are putting together the materials for another building and stove out at the runway camp.  Once the mooring camp breaks up they will use some of their materials.  Dean will also be at the runway site on Friday to help Sigrid Salo and Tim Stanton deploy their buoys.

The JAMSTEC buoys will be deployed on Saturday, hopefully at 88ºN, 170ºE on the other side of the Lomonosov Ridge.

The shortage of fuel has limited their helo operations but Andy is arranging for a fuel delivery from Alert.

The reporters are having a good time talking to everyone in camp. 

Jamie did one CTD cast at Borneo, at approximately 89ºN 86º E.  Jamie found it is still warm down in the Atlantic water.  He plans another CTD cast at the mooring site later today.  It is clear that changes are continuing in the Arctic.

The weather is beautiful, clear as a bell, not too cold, -25C, no wind.  Andy is doing his calisthenics and Jamie is looking for coffee cups.  It’s time to refuel on caffeine.  Jamie will try to get some low resolution pictures of Borneo to send us.

New York Times Web Forum, April 24, 2003 1500EST____________________________________________

Email conversation with reporter Andrew Revkin at Borneo.
   Free New York Times registration required.

Phone call from Jim Johnson to Knut Aagaard, 12:30 p.m. PDT (Seattle):

Jim Johnson just called from the mooring camp, where it is now Thursday evening.  The 2002 mooring was fully recovered about 12 hours ago (around midnight Seattle time).  It came in cleanly and was in good shape, to everyone's amazement given the rubble fields around the site.

There has been one major problem, viz., that two of the three bolts on the capstan drive sheared off.  They were able to effect full repair within about four hours, however, and load tests with the full anchor weight suggest the capstan is as good as new.

It's warm (in the minus teens), and under the insulating cover the hole is staying open nicely.  A back haul of gear to Borneo (and on to Resolute) is planned for tomorrow morning camp time, and shortly afterwards they'll start deployment of the 2003 mooring.  Eric will likely go out on that backhaul flight.

The ice is drifting rapidly toward the southwest, but Jim reports that all is well in camp as they prepare for a quiet night.

Emailed Wednesday, April 23, 2003 __________________________________________________________

From Jamie Morison:
The mooring has been released, recovery in progress. Jamie Morison, Tim Stanton, and Press Corp to Borneo tomorrow.

Phone call from Andy Heiberg, at Borneo, 9:30 p.m. Moscow time:

The mooring recovery is underway. It is slow going. The ice is thick and took some work getting the ice plug out of the hole. The mooring team will sleep tomorrow, then start the new mooring deployment.
In approximately 30 minutes, Jamie, Tim, and the media will arrive at Borneo. Andy and Dean are heading out to the runway in the helicopter to pick them up. The runway is approximately 5 miles from Borneo. Weather has been good, -24C. The ice is terrible around Borneo and they are not sure yet where Sigrid Salo and Tim Stanton will deploy their buoys.

Phone call from Jim Johnson to Knut Aagaard:
Jim just called from the mooring camp. They had bad ice the first day and did not release the mooring. It is now released, however, albeit in ridged and pretty thick ice. The mooring camp, which is moving rapidly, is established; the hole has been melted through 9' of ice; and they are getting ready to dive. Eric and Jim O. will go in the water shortly. The top of the mooring is about 13 m from the hole, and it had to be located acoustically, since the PIEPS did not work. There have been a variety of issues to deal with, but all seems well at the moment, and they are feeling good about their progress. Jim will call when the mooring is fully recovered.

Emailed Monday, April 21, 2003 _____________________________________________________________

From Jim Johnson:
Things are going along fine. We have loaded the Hawker with about 6400 pounds for the first flight to Borneo. We will be flying with Andy, Dean, Eric, Mike, Jim O. and myself. Andy has talked to Borneo and there is a good chance we could fly the Mil-8 helicopter out soon after we arrive and do the hunt. This would give us a good jump on starting the whole process. We plan to fly out with the camp and search gear and all 4 of the mooring team. Hopefully when I call you Tuesday morning, it will be to tell you we have it!

From Jamie Morison
Hawker 748 departed Resolute for Borneo with Andy Heiberg, Dean Stewart, Jim Johnson, Mike Ohmart, Eric Boget, Jim Osse, and aircrew of three. Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) at Borneo is 1330 CDT (1830 UTC). Sigrid Salo, Takashi Kikuchi, Hirokatsu Uno, and Jamie Morison are in Resolute checking equipment. Andrew Revkin, Peter West, Alexandra Witse, and Tim Stanton due Resolute at 2000 CDT.