Oregon State University

Hot science in cool places: Carbon & water fluxes in Antarctica's Dry Valleys

Dry Valleys of Antarctica: DRYVEX

Research: BmMs prepare for antarctic deployment to the Dry Valleys in Dec - Jan 2013. The objective of the DRYVEX campaign is to quantify the contribution of features called 'watertracks' to the water and carbon budget of this dry and cold landscape. Watertracks are wet and dark soils indicating subsurface flow that result from the shallow seasonal melting occurring during the short austral summer. The campaign is led by Joe Levy, who has studied watertracks for several years using geologic, geospatial, and geochemical methods. This year, Chris Thomas will accompany Joe to measure the components of the surface energy balance and the atmospheric carbon dioxide exchange. Two stations equipped with eddy covariance sensors, net radiometers, ground thermometers, and thermal/ near-infrared/ and visible imagers will be deployed in the bottom of Taylor valley not far from the Ross ice shelf. The project is funded by the National Science Foundation. Stay tuned as we create and update pictures in the DRYVEX image gallery once we are in the field. Image credit: NASA, Aqua/MODIS 2012/290, 250m resolution, view the full-sized image.

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