June 22, 2018
Meeting of Early Career Permafrost Researchers in Yakutsk
On June 4-20, 2018, MPI held the Fifth Forum for Young Permafrost Scientists commemorating the 90th anniversary of the birth of Professor, Dr. Maria K. Gavrilova (1928-2010), the distinguished Russian climatologist and permafrost scientist. The Forum was attended by early career permafrost researchers from Yakutsk, Tyumen, Moscow, Mirny, Tomsk and Lanzhou who presented their research during the four-day conference in Yakutsk. The papers presented addressed a variety of topics, including gas emission craters in northern West Siberia, lakes of the Antarctic oases, mountain permafrost mapping using satellite imagery, evaluation of cast-in-place piles in permafrost based on the temperature tracing concrete hydration model, ERT and GPR case studies, development of new instruments for thermal conductivity measurement, radiocarbon dating, palynology of Quaternary ice-complex deposits, hydrological modeling, and construction on hydraulic fills. The conference was followed by a field workshop in Amga. This agricultural area in central Yakutia is presently experiencing accelerated development of thermokarst and other erosion processes. Participants examined permafrost-related processes and associated problems for agriculture and rural infrastructure.
May 10, 2018
Victory Day - Remembering WWII Veterans
On May 9, Russia celebrated Victory Day, the holiday that commemorates the end of World War II. No other country suffered greater loss of life and destruction as the Soviet Union. Even after 73 years the exact number of military and civil casualties remains unknown. Over 62,000 people were called to the front from Yakutia alone, which had a pre-war population of 413,800, with more than half killed in action.
Many from the first generation of Soviet permafrost scientists fought on the battlefields of WWII. Petr Shvetsov, the author of three chapters in "Principles of Geocryology" (1959), volunteered to the Red Army in the early days of the war and took part in the battles of Stalingrad and Kursk and the Operation Bagration. Evgeny Katasonov, who developed the cryofacies method in 1954, was wounded and captured in August 1941 when his regiment was encircled near the border with Poland. In June 1944 he escaped from the POW camp and joined the partisans in Slovakia and later the regular troops of the Red Army. Egor Molochushkin, who studied subsea permafrost in the Laptev Sea in the 1960s, was drafted to the Army in summer 1942 at the age of 19. He was badly wounded at the battle of Kursk where he fought as a private in the Rifles. Igor Nekrasov, who led large-scale regional permafrost studies all over Siberia in the 1960s-1980s, took command of an engineer platoon in January 1945 and met the victory day on the Oder. Nikolay Grigoriev, known for his pioneer investigations of the Arctic coastal permafrost, was assigned to Ferrying Division 78727-K in 1943 to conduct site investigations and construct auxiliary airfields for the ALSIB route. Nikolay Ivanov, the author of landmark books on heat and mass transfer in permafrost, served in communications units of the military airports in Yakutia and Magadan Region during the entire war. Photo (l to r): Petr Shvetsov, Nikolay Ivanov, Evgeny Katasonov, Egor Molochushkin, Igor Nekrasov.
March 1, 2018
Employees Union Annual Meeting
The annual meeting of the MPI's Employees Union was held on February 24th to hear the report of the Union Committee and elect new Committee members. The Committee represents the interests of 147 Union members. In 2017, the Committee held two conciliation meetings to make changes into the Collective Agreement, processed 62 applications for lump-sum pecuniary aid, recreation and medical treatment compensation, maternity benefits, seniors support, monetary loans and dormitory applications as reported by its Chair, Semen Gotovtsev. Sixteen cultural and sports events and five activities for children were organized. MPI's sport teams won medals in 6 disciplines at the Spartaciad of the Yakutsk research institutes and took an overall-first place. The Annual Meeting elected 11 new members of the Committee. Igor Syromyatnikov will lead the Committee in the coming year.
April 4, 2018
Our Magazine is nominated for the Chrystal Compass Award
Nauka I Tekhnika v Yakutii (Science and Technology in Yakutia) has been nominated for the Chrystal Compass Award in the Best Media Coverage category. This prestigious national award under the auspices of the Russian Geographical Society and Gazprom recognizes achievements in national geography, environmental protection, preservation and popularization of the natural, cultural and historical heritage of Russia. In all, 327 projects and campaigns from 68 Russian regions and 23 foreign countries, including Australia, UK, Italy, Sweden, South Africa and Japan, have been nominated. Winners will be selected by a jury and public voting at http://rus-compass.ru/projects/. Voting will continue until April 30, 2018.
Nauka i Tekhnika v Yakutii is a popular science magazine dedicated to Yakutian science and technology. Established in 2001, the magazine is published by the Melnikov Permafrost Institute twice a year. The magazine seeks to foster communication across disciplines, disseminate scientific knowledge to the wider public, and promote a positive image of science and scientists. Nauka i Tekhnika v Yakutii publishes scientific research articles, reports on technological developments in Yakutia, expedition news, and discussions. It also includes papers on history, philosophy, medicine, and arts. Its regular columns, such as Rising Generation, Our Lecture Room, Diamond ABC, Museums and National Parks in Yakutia, World Around Us, Entertaining Science and Funny Quotes from Scientists, are intended to reach out to the younger audience. Other categories of the magazine’s content are conference reports, new books, and life sketches of outstanding Yakutian scientists.
February 14, 2018
Progress Report Seminar by Laboratory of Permafrost Geothermics
On February 9th and 12th, the MPI's Laboratory of Permafrost Geothermics held seminars to report research achievements in 2017 and to discuss plans for 2018 on Project IX.135.2.2: Subsurface Temperature Field and Permafrost Transformation in Northern Asia and Central Asian Mountains (Project Director: Mikhail Zhelezniak, D.Sc.), one of the five federal government contracts for the years 2017-2019. Team members of Sub-Project 1, which aims to understand the development of subsurface temperature fields and permafrost in major tectonic structures of the Siberian Platform, Valery Semenov, Ivan Misailov and Anatoly Kirillin presented the results of their investigations in the Viluyi Basin, Nepa-Botuoba Uplift, Anabar-Khatanga Saddle, Anabar-Olenek Uplift and Elkon Horst. Denis Sivtsev and Maria Rozhina reported the progress in developing the geocryological database of the Verkhoyansk-Chukotka Region under Sub-Project 2. Stepan Varlamov, Principal Investigator of Sub-Project 3, and his team members told about their field observations and numerical modeling of the thermal response of upper permafrost to climate change and human impacts, with focus on the Central Yakutian permafrost region.