ARCSS Program | Research Efforts
This set of projects, funded in 2009, focus on investigations in shifts in the timing, length, and pattern of individual seasonal events that are occurring throughout the arctic system, including physical events (e.g., ocean and atmospheric circulation and fluxes, precipitation, sudden thaws, presence of ice and snow), biological events (e.g., plant phenology, animal life history events) and human activities (e.g., resource use, industrial activities).
The SASS effort currently consists of 17 funded projects focused on advancing understanding of the arctic system by building on and integrating existing data and knowledge to advance understanding of linkages, interactions, and feedbacks among components of the arctic system. More information on the SASS effort can be found through this website.
Study of the Northern Alaska Coastal
In early 2004, NSF released an announcement of opportunity for the Study of the Northern Alaska Coastal System (SNACS; see Witness Spring 2004). The solicitation drew on two science plans from the ARCSS research community:
The announcement defined the coastal system very broadly, from the Brooks Range to the ice edge. In response, NSF received 43 proposals for 23 projects requesting a total of $24 million, not including logistics costs. NSF was able to fund six projects for a total of $7.27 million in FY 2005 and 2006.
Human Dimensions of the
Arctic System (HARC)
The Human Dimensions of the Arctic System (HARC) activities focus on human interactions with physical and biological environmental change in the Arctic.
A set of projects funded under the title "Arctic Freshwater Cycle: Land/Upper-Ocean Linkages" links CHAMP/ASOF/SEARCH. More information on FWI activities can be found through the Arctic-CHAMP website.
The NSF funded SBI Project is progressing in three phases over a ten-year period. The goal of Phase I (1998-2001), Phase II (2002-2006), and Phase III (2007-2009) is to investigate the production, transformation and fate of carbon at the shelf-slope interface in the Arctic as a prelude to understanding the impacts of a potential warming of the Arctic.
A four-year (2005-2008) NSF Arctic System Science Program funded project - the centerpiece of which is a synthesis of standardized, high resolution proxy climate records from lakes across the North American Arctic that will advance understanding of the arctic's role within the Earth system. The goal of which is to contribute to understanding the arctic system by placing 20th century climatic change into a longer-term context of inter-decadal climatic variability spanning the last 2000 years.
The past research components of ARCSS, listed below,
have contributed an abundance of data and have
advanced our knowledge of the arctic system. Each of
these efforts has undergone various community-driven
synthesis and integration activities over the years.
The planning infrastructures that supported the
separate ARCSS component efforts have run their
course, and most have been allowed to expire:
- LAII office and Science Steering Committee (SSC) funding expired 31 December 2004;
- OAII office and SSC funding expired 30 June 2005;
- RAISE/LSI office funding expired 31 July 2005;
- PARCS office and SSC funding expired 31 October 2005;
- A HARC core office was recently created and funded for a limited period to help the social science community incorporate its research into the overall ARCSS agenda.
Ocean-Atmosphere-Ice Interactions (OAII)
The Ocean-Atmosphere-Ice Interactions (OAII) component of ARCSS has investigated the arctic marine system in the context of global change. Recent OAII programs have included SHEBA, SBI and SEARCH.
Land-Atmosphere-Ice Interactions (LAII) investigations have improved our understanding of arctic terrestrial ecosystems, the role they play in the whole Earth system, and the effect that global change may have on the Arctic. This program includes ATLAS and ITEX.
Russian-American Initiative on Shelf-Land Environments in the Arctic (RAISE)
The RAISE objective is to facilitate collaborative research between Russian and American scientists in order to understand processes and events in terrestrial, shelf, and ocean environments in northern Eurasia in the context of a globally changing environment.
Paleoenvironmental Arctic Sciences
Paleoclimate research straddles the National Science Foundation's ARCSS and Earth Systems History (ESH) programs, and paleoenvironmental research activities in the Arctic have expanded to include all facets of the paleosciences. These paleoenvironmental programs have coordinated their efforts in an overarching effort ñ Paleoenvironmental Arctic Sciences (PARCS).
The completed GISP2 research program and follow on research activities have been incorporated into other NSF funding initiatives, like PARCS (see above). We have included the GISP2 link below for additional information.
Greenland Ice Sheet Project Two
The GISP2 deep ice core from central Greenland, and the companion GRIP ice core, are yielding an exceptionally high-resolution, multi-parameter history of climatic changes over the last 100,000 years or more in the Northern Hemisphere.