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> Another great day out in the field
Robert_Oddo
post Jul 31 2005, 04:43 AM
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Yesterday was just another great day up here in the field. We got out early (Nora, Emily, Carlos and I) and made our way back up to the glacier. We collected the water samples that our auto samplers had collected over a 2 day period. You could see that there were changes in turbidity over this period. Questions that arose. Was this due to the 15mm of rain or because of some diurnal cycle (even though it is light all the time? More analysis is needed. We got back up to the glacier and the ablation stakes. Measured the stakes again. It seems like water is pouring off the glacier now. You can almost see the retreat. There are also all kinds of sediments on the surface. When you get out like we do every day, many questions pop up and you can see how people can work for years in a particular area. We have done some calculations regarding glacial retreat. If it is retreating 18 meters per year at a constant rate, this glacier will be gone before the end of the century? Wow. But if you look at the geologic record around here you see evidence of change that has occurred in the past and you ask is this just another change that is occurring now. But other questions pop up. Are we causing this change? What implications will the current changes have on us? Even though we are studying an isolated system, are the changes observed here just signals that the whole system is beginning to change.

The experience here is giving me all kinds of ideas to bring back to the classroom. We are constantly redesigning our collection techniques and looking at data in ways to answer specific questions. I constantly ask myself, how could I apply these experiences to the classroom and what I do. Experimental design is so much about what we do in class and I am getting great experience in how to design experiments, what to do with data and how to analyze it. This will be invaluable to me when I return to the classroom in the fall.

Finally, about the light. It is light all the time here. It does not get dark and the sun will not set while we are here. However, the sun makes a circle in the sky and sometimes it is higher in the sky and sometimes lower. I find that I don't have to sleep as much. Those of you that know me, I don't get a lot of sleep anyway but now it is ridiculous. I usually go to sleep around midnight and wake up around 3 or 4 am. I have tried to sleep more but it doesn't work. I have talked to some of the locals about this. They say it is normal for them. They say that in the dark months they just hibernate and get between 10 and 12 hours of sleep. Hmmmm. I don't think that will happen when I get back.


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the end of the glacier with a lot of sediment on it.

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Nora carrying gear up the glacier

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drilling holes in the glacier for the level loggers.
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Leslie_Pierce
post Aug 1 2005, 05:23 PM
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Hi Bob,

Sounds like you're having a great time.

We have our first sunset in Barrow tomorrow, August 2nd. So, I was wondering what your latitude is there in Svalbard? Ours is 71 degrees 18 minutes.

Thanks,
Leslie
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Janet_Warburton
post Aug 1 2005, 06:54 PM
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First sunset in Barrow! Gads - this truly means that winter is coming back. I was hoping I could be in denial a little longer smile.gif

I love your journal entries Bob! Very interesting work and the scenery looks spectacular!

Janet
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Robert_Oddo
post Aug 2 2005, 03:44 AM
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It will be light the whole time I am here. I am at 78 degrees N. The first sunset is on the 24 of August. However, each day the sun gets lower and lower in the sky.
Bob
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