2003 Deployment Updates                                                           Earlier Deployments
NPEO 2003 Deployment Planning


The fourth North Pole Environmental Observatory field operations are tentatively planned for April 15 through May 10, 2003, with the first team of scientists and support personnel scheduled to arrive on-site at Borneo on April 21. Boreno is a privately operated French/Russian ice station established each spring since 1994 in the North Pole region. Negotiations are underway to use camp Borneo again this year through the National Science Foundation's logistics coordinator Veco Polar Resources. Logistics and camp support will be provided by Andy Heiberg and Dean Stewart, University of Washington. During an intense three-week period of field operations we plan to accomplish the following:

Mooring recovery and installation
Objectives: Recover mooring deployed in 2002; deploy new mooring.
Knut Aagaard, University of Washington, PI

The second NPEO mooring installed at 89.5°North and 53.5°East in April 2002 will be recovered and brought home to Seattle, where the data will be retrieved and analyzed. This mooring includes an upward-looking sonar to measure ice draft, precision temperature/conductivity recorder, an acoustic Doppler current profiler to measure water and ice velocity; and current meters to measure water velocity, temperature, and conductivity. Each instrument has an internal data logger. Three divers will be on-site to assist with the recovery, guiding the 2500m of instrumented line up through a hole cut in the ice.

A third mooring outfitted with a similar array of instrumentation will be deployed. Mooring field team members include Jim Johnson, Mike Ohmart, Eric Boget, and Jim Osse, all of the University of Washington.

Automated drifting stations

Objectives: Deploy the JAMSTEC, PMEL and NPGS drifters and buoys in the North Pole vicinity, and deploy two buoys for the International Arctic Buoy Program. Happily, the 2002 buoy array remains in the Arctic Basin and continues to report data.

Jim Overland, NOAA/PMEL, PI
PMEL/NOAA's 2003 deployment will include a meteorological station to measure wind speed and direction, air temperature and air pressure; radiometers to measure solar and sky radiation; two mass balance buoys, and a Web Cam to track the North Pole snow cover, weather conditions and the status of PMEL's North Pole instrumentation. Information about the first Web Cam deployed at the North Pole in 2002 is available at the NOAA North Pole Web Cam Page.

The Mass Balance Buoys (also called ice-temperature buoys, PMEL/CRREL buoys or drifting buoys) include a chain of thermistors that measure temperatures from the air down through the snow cover, through the sea ice, and into the sea water below the ice. The chain is several meters long, and has temperature sensors every 5-10 cm. One of the buoys also includes an acoustic pinger that measures the depth of the snow on top of the sea ice. These buoys transmit data through the NOAA Argos satellite. Drift track and data are available on the NOAA North Pole Weather Data Page and from the NPEO website.

Takatoshi Takizawa, Japan Marine Science and Technology Center, PI
The JAMSTEC JCAD-4, deployed in 2002, has been transmitting depth, temperature, salinity, wind direction, and wind speed data via satellite. The data are automatically updated hourly to the NPEO website. A new JCAD buoy will be deployed.

Tim Stanton, Naval Postgraduate School, PI
The Autonomous Ocean Flux Buoy is used in conjunction with the PMEL and JAMSTEC buoys to provide a means of studying changes in the Central Arctic Basin environment over long periods. The Autonomous Ocean Flux Buoy includes an instrument cluster with an acoustic Doppler current profiler, precision temperature and conductivity sensors, and velocity, tilt and heading sensors set 4.5 m below the ice. A low power acoustic travel time current sensor, a stable conductivity cell and a very high-resolution thermistor measure velocities, salinity and temperature. Correlating fluctuations of vertical velocity with horizontal velocity, temperature, and salinity fluctuations can be used to estimate the vertical transport of momentum, heat and salt through the ocean mixed layer.

Automated drifting station team members include:  Sigrid Salo, NOAA/PMEL; Tim Stanton, Naval Postgraduate School; and Takashi Kikuchi, Japanese Marine Science and Technology Center.

Aerial Hydrographic Surveys
Objectives: To determine the position of major water mass boundaries and the distribution of water types across key sections of the Arctic Ocean.
Jamie Morison and Michael Steele, University of Washington, Kelly Falkner, Oregon State University, PIs

The NPEO Hydrochemical Survey will be carried out by Twin Otter aircraft between Alert and the North Pole. We plan to revisit the seven locations that were surveyed in NPEO 2000. Each station will consist of an expendable CTD (XCTD) launch followed by a deep CTD cast (maximum 1000 m) accompanied by four Niskin bottles. The CTD carries a dissolved oxygen sensor and the bottles will be sampled for salinity, dissolved oxygen, oxygen isotopes of seawater, nutrients and barium. Previous CTD profiles are available on the NPEO Aerial CTDs Page . The chemical data may be found at Kelly Falkner’s website under Research Projects.

The Freshwater Switchyard Project ( Michael Steele, University of Washington,PI) will carry out a 120-km north-south oriented CTD section centered on 84N, 65W using a helicopter. Up to nine stations are planned, each consisting of a 500 m CTD cast, an expendable current meter launch and collection of a surface water sample. The water samples will be used to measure concentrations of such chemical tracers as disolved oxygen, oxygen-isotopes, barium, and nutrients. This survey is funded by NSF grant OPP-0230427, Circulation in the Freshwater Switchyard of the Arctic Ocean.

Hydrographic survey team members include: Kelly Falkner, Oregon State University, and Jamie Morison, Michael Steele and Roger Andersen, University of Washington.