University of Illinois Chicago
Dept of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Supporting Stations: McMurdo Station
Research Locations: Dry Valleys
Initially funded in 1980, the US Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) Network is a collaborative effort involving more than 1,800 scientists and students. The McMurdo LTER program is an inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary study of the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in the ice-free McMurdo Dry Valleys. It is one of 26 LTER sites where researchers are studying ecological processes over long temporal and broad spatial scales. Its primary focus is the physical limnology of the McMurdo Dry Valleys lakes. This year's goals are: (1) To upgrade and maintain long-term automated lake-monitoring equipment; (2) Carry out manual lake hydrologic balance measurements (lake level and ablation); (3) Measure the movement of surface ice using high-precision GPS; (4) Characterize signatures and patterns of benthic productivity (using SCUBA); and (5) Collect sediment and water samples for a suite of geochemical experiments. This six-year award cycle comprises seven collaborative projects: Michael Gooseff C-504, John Priscu C-505, Diane McKnight C-506, Diana Wall C-507, Jeb Barrett, C-508, Berry Lyons C-509, and Peter Doran C-511.
Field Season Overview:
Three participants will be based at the established field camps—Fryxell, Bonney, Hoare—and make day trips by helicopter to Wright and Victoria Valleys. With UNAVCO’s assistance, they will also survey established ablation stakes in the Taylor Valley. Team members will SCUBA diving at Lake Fryxell in order to continue benthic studies in collaboration with the New Zealand Antarctic program.
Deploying Team Members:
Peter Doran (PI)
Peter Doran (PI)
Hilary Dugan (Team Leader)