Antarctic Environments and Climate Change Research Group
ANTECC has now a new zodiac Mark V HD to support field work in Livingston Island, Antarctic. The boat was funded by the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT) and integrates the Portuguese Polar Programme in a collaboration with the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute. It will be used to support logistical operations at the St. Kliment Ohridski station in Livingston Island, as well as ANTECC researchers field work. It will allow access to several of our field sites around Hurd Peninsula. 
The Zodiac Mark V Heavy Duty measures 5.85 m and is equipped with a 50HP Yamaha engine and a 15HP Yamaha engine. The Mark V HD may transport up to 15 people and a total payload of 2520 kg.  
Assembling the Zodiac at the Bulgarian beach
Ready for sailing

The year 2009 has been important for Portuguese permafrost research and contributed to the consolidation of research, funding and critical mass. Activities focused on three main subjects: i) Antarctic permafrost and active layer dynamics, led by the Centre for Geographical Studies, University of Lisbon (CEG-UL); ii) Chemistry of Arctic permafrost by IPIMAR; iii) Earth-Mars analogues by CERENA - Instituto Superior Técnico, UTL. 

The CEG-UL is leading the FCT-funded project PERMANTAR in Livingston (LI) and Deception (DI) Islands (Antarctic Peninsula region), which also involves the Centre of Geophysics of the University of Lisbon and Centre of Geophysics of Évora. The project includes also the universities of Alcalá (Spain) and Buenos Aires (Argentina), and the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute. PERMANTAR collaborates closely with the Spanish project PERMAMODEL-IPY. Main activities focused in the the installation and upgrading of permafrost and periglacial processes monitoring sites: i) a new 8 m borehole in LI, ii) three new 4-5m boreholes (collaboration Russian Academy of Sciences) in DI, iii) new CALM-S sites in DI and LI, iv) a meteorological station in LI, v) solifluction, thermokarst and rockglaciers monitoring sites, vi) time-lapse cameras, vii) year-round monitoring with resistivimeter with datalogger in DI, viii) electrical resistivity tomography surveying in LI, and ix) n-factor monitoring sites in DI. Master theses on Antarctic permafrost have been presented by A. Trindade and R. Melo ( Education and outreach activities have been organized, including talks in schools, public lectures and a permafrost film “Permafrost! Polar science at 62ºS” for classroom activities. It will be freely available in DVD to schools and open-access in the Internet. The CEG-UL team continued the scientific coordination of the grant program New Generation of Polar Scientists funded by Caixa Carbono Zero (CGD). This program involves full-time funding of two students on permafrost research in a total of six grants in polar science.

IPIMAR's research on permafrost was conducted in Umuijaq, Northen Québec. The main objectives are studying carbon and contaminant chemistry in thermokarst lakes and their hydrological impact in rivers, sea and snow pack. Measurements of biogas fluxes and sampling of water, ice, snow and sediments for analysis were conducted. Umuijaq is an area of carbon-poor permafrost which contrasts with the results obtained in 2008 in a carbon-rich permafrost area. This study contributes to a better understanding of the impacts of permafrost thaw in the carbon and trace element contaminants cycles.

CERENA continued researching automated mapping and characterization of polygonal networks on Mars. Research focused on the detailed analysis of the NASA Phoenix landing region (around 68º N), which are extensive plains largely occupied by small-scale polygonal terrains. These were difficult to perceive in previous imagery but are now unveiled by the HiRISE camera onboard Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (30 cm/pixel). The huge number of small polygons (diameter around 4 m) demonstrates the necessity of using automated approaches allowing for a detailed mapping of these extensive networks. This will contribute to gather data to help probe into the most widely accepted genetical models, namely thermal contraction of permafrost.  

Gonçalo Vieira, João Canário and Pedro Pina
Entre 20 e 24 de Outubro Alice Ferreira esteve na Universidade de Valladolid sob direcção científica de Enrique Serrano a elaborar um plano de trabalho investigação conjunto sobre os Picos da Europa. O trabalho de investigação visa aumentar o conhecimento sobre o regime térmico da superfície do solo e estabelecer relações com a morfodinâmica periglaciária no Maciço Central do Picos da Europa.

Alice Ferreira stayed at the University of Valladolid to develop collaborative research on the ground thermal regime and periglacial processes.
From 20 to 24 October Alice Ferreira has been at the University of Valladolid under scientific direction of Enrique Serrano to elaborate a work plan to jointly develop research at the Picos de Europa. The research aims to increase knowledge about the thermal regime of the ground surface and establish relations with the periglacial morphodynamics in the Central Massif of Picos de Europa.
O AntECC organiza no dia 28 de Outubro de 2009, pelas 12h, na sala 5.2 da Faculdade de Letras, a palestra "La exploración de Marte en el siglo XXI", pelo Prof. Miguel Angel de Pablo do Departamento de Geologia da Universidade de Alcalá de Henares.
A conferência é aberta e teremos o maior gosto em contar com a sua presença.

AntECC organizes in the 28 October 2009, 12h00, room 5.2 (FLUL) a talk on "Mars exploration in the 21st century" by Prof. Miguel Angel de Pablo, Department of Geology of the University of Alcalá, Spain. The conference is open and it will be our pleasure to count with your presence.
Between the 21st and 26th of September AntECC members A. Ferreira e M. Jorge participated in the field work carried out by a multidisciplinary team composed by 6 scientists from different universities of Spain (E. Serrano & M. González, U. de Valladolid; J. González-Trueba & I. Rico, U. del País Vasco; and J. de Sanjosé & J. Bejarano, U. de Extremadura) in the Pyrenean Natural Park of Posets-Maladeta. The campaign general objectives were the monitoring of the periglacial (rock glaciers, protalus lobes, solifluxion lobes) and glacial (Maladeta and Paul glaciers) geomorphodynamics and the placing of a soil surface thermometric network, on two distinct sectors of the natural park – Maladeta and Posets granitic massifs. The tasks performed involved the experimental using of innovative monitoring techniques, specifically the laser-scanning of Paul´s glacier topographic surface and of small solifluxion lobes. They will allow, among other things, to study systematically the volumetric changes of the two mentioned glaciers and the thermal regime of the soil surface in the two areas, at different altitudinal levels.  The exchanging and discussion of ideas and the cooperation on the organization of field work logistics composed an enriching experience, both from the scientific and personal points of view.  

De 21 a 26 de Setembro os investigadores do AntECC A. Ferreira e M. Jorge participaram no trabalho campo realizado por uma equipa pluridisciplinar formada por 6 investigadores de diversas universidades espanholas (E. Serrano e M. González, U. de Valladolid; J. González-Trueba e I. Rico, U. del País Vasco; e J. de Sanjosé e J. Bejarano, U. de Extremadura) no parque natural Posets-Maladeta, nos Pirinéus. A campanha teve como objectivo geral a monitorização da dinâmica geomorfológica periglaciar (glaciares rochosos, protalus lobes e lóbulos de solifluxão) e da dinâmica glaciar (glaciar da Maladeta e glaciar da Paul) e a instalação de uma rede termométrica da superfície do solo, em dois sectores distintos do parque natural – maciços graníticos da Maladeta e de Posets. O trabalho efectuado envolveu a utilização experimental de técnicas de monitorização inovadoras, de onde se destaca o laser-scanning da superfície do glaciar da Paul e de pequenos lóbulos de solifluxão. As actividades desenvolvidas permitirão, entre outros, estudar de modo sistemático as variações volumétricas dos dois glaciares referidos e o regime térmico da superfície do solo nas duas áreas, a diferentes níveis altimétricos. O intercâmbio e discussão de ideias e a cooperação na organização logística das actividades de campo compuseram uma experiência muito enriquecedora, do ponto de vista científico e pessoal.
AntECC members G. Vieira, M. Neves, A. Ferreira and M. Jorge, together with I. Bernardo from CGUL attended the general meeting for the preparation of the Spanish Antarctic Campaign 2009-10 in the 28th September in Madrid. In the following day, the PERMAMODEL-PERMANTAR team met at the University of Alcalá to prepare the activities that will take place in Deception and Livingston Islands.

Os investigadores do AntECC G. Vieira, M. Neves, A. Ferreira e M. Jorge, bem como I. Bernardo do CGUL, estiveram na reunião de preparação da campanha antárctica de 2009-10, em Madrid, no dia 28 de Setembro. No dia seguinte, a equipa participou na reunião dos projectos PERMAMODEL-PERMANTAR de preparação das actividades de investigação que irão decorrer nas ilhas Deception e Livingston.
Gonçalo Vieira will participate in a Science Cafe at the Gulbenkian Foundation Gardens in the 25 September at 6pm. The theme of the chat will be "Warm ice. From Polar science to climate change". You are invited to attend.
Check programme at

Gonçalo Vieira irá participar num Café de Ciência, no âmbito da noite europeia dos investigadores, a realizar nos Jardins da Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, no dia 25 de Setembro, pelas 18h00, sob o tema "Gelo quente. Da ciência polar às alterações climáticas". Está também convidado a participar!
Mais informações em 
We have just shipped the equipment for the next Antarctic Season in Livingston and Deception islands. Besides the equipment for permafrost, climate and geomorphodynamics monitoring, this year we are shipping a new Mark V Zodiac that will be located at the Bulgarian Antarctic Station St. Kliment Ohridsky for support of research and logistics.
Alice Ferreira (AntECC) and Ivo Bernardo (CGUL) that appear in the photo will go for the first time to the Antarctic, together with Mário Neves that is doing is third campaign. The field season for AntECC will start in early December and will end in mid February.
Acabámos de preparar e enviar o equipamento para a próxima campanha antárctica que decorrerá nas ilhas Livingston e Deception. Além do equipamento para manutenção da instrumentação de monitorização do permafrost, clima e dinâmica geomorfológica, destaca-se uma lancha Zodiac Mark V que ficará na Bas Antárctica Búlgara St. Kliment Ohridski e que servirá para apoiar a logística e as actividades de investigação.
Alice Ferreira (AntECC) e Ivo Bernardo (CGUL), que aparecem na fotografia vão pela primeira vez para a Antárctida, enquanto Mário Neves participará na sua terceira campanha antárctica. A campanha antárctica do AntECC iniciar-se-à no início de Dezembro e decorrerá até meados de Março.
The film "Permafrost! Polar science at 62ºS" produced by AntECC in the framework of project LATITUDE60! of the International Polar Year, will be presented next friday at the main square in Almada at 10.00pm. The film has English subtitles. Download the programme below.

O documentário "Permafrost! Ciência polar a 62ºS" vai ser projectado amanhã, dia 18 de Setembro de 2009, pelas 22h, na Praça Central de Almada. Faça o download do programa com a localização em baixo.
File Size: 494 kb
File Type: pdf
Download File

The new ESF COST action RESCUE on Responses to Environmental and Societal Challenges for our Unstable Earth took place in Rueil-Malmaison, Paris from 9 to 10 September 2009. Gonçalo Vieira has participated in this important workshop having contributed to the Working Group 2: Requirements for research methodologies and
More information on the RESCUE initiative can be found here.

A nova acção do COST da ESF sobre Responses to Environmental and Societal Challenges for our Unstable Earth decorreu em Paris, em 9 e 10 de Setembro de 2009. Gonçalo Vieira participou neste importante workshop, tendo estado envolvido no grupo de trabalho sobre "Necessidades para metodologias de investigação e dados".
Mais informações sobre o RESCUE podem ser encontradas aqui.