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Buoy 300025010122530

Eric Brossier, captain of the Vagabond Polar Yacht installed this Ice Mass Balance Buoy on the sea ice near Grise Fjord, Nunavut on January 19, 2013.The data gets transmitted via satellite to Joubeh Technologies and then passed on to me, Justin Beckers, a PhD student at the University of Alberta under the supervision of Dr. Christian Haas.


March 26, 2013: Last Monday, the computer that runs the code to get the buoy data and plot it has died. We won't be able to repair it until early April.
Sorry for any problems this may cause.

February 25, 2013: When we deployed the plotting system for the buoy, there was some confusion as to whether or not the surface sonic ranger for measuring snow depth was already temperature compensated. The surface sonic ranger measures the distance between the itself and the snow surface using sound.  The speed of sound in air depends on the density and thus the temperature of the air. Now that we have a nice time series, it seems quite clear that the snow depth was not temperature compensated. A temperature correction has been applied, and the graphs have been updated below.
Before the correction, the changes in snow depth on the plot very closely matched the changes in air temperature. Note that there is a fair bit of noise in the snow depth measurement.  Sonic rangers have difficulty measuring a reflection from the surface of low density snow.

February 20, 2013: I have fixed the issues here with plotting the data. The data are back to being near real-time (updated at 30minutes past the hour, every hour).

February 19, 2013: We are experiencing some technical difficulties on the data plotting end.  The buoy seems to be working fine, but the computer that the graphs are made on is having some issues. I hope to have it sorted out soon.  I will also try to run the code manually on another machine at least once a day to update the plots.

February 8, 2013: Eric has visited the buoy again, and taken some more photos (below). Thanks for passing them on Eric!
(C) Eric Brossier, 2013(C) Eric Brossier, 2013
           (c) Eric Brossier, 2013                                            (c) Eric Brossier, 2013
Jan 31, 2013: Eric Brossier has visited the buoy again and provided another measurement of the ice thickness near the sonar sensor.  The new information has been used to update the plots so that the ice thickness matches the new measurement,

Jan 24, 2013 1200: Middle thermistor string of buoy is not working. Eric Brossier has visited the buoy today: a dastardly fox has chewed through the cable connecting the middle thermistor string to the buoy. Other sensors are working great.


(c) Eric Brossier, 2013

(c) Eric Brossier, 2013

Below you will find pictures and graphs of the data that get passed on to me.  If you have pictures of the buoy that you would like to share, please send them to me via email at
 (c) Eric Brossier, 2013  
   (c) Eric Brossier, 2013

I have written code that takes the data I get from the buoy and makes some graphs.  Here is the position of the buoy, the snow depth, ice thickness, air temperature, air pressure, and the snow, ice, water temperatures.
On occasion, a measurement from the buoy will be missing.  When this happens, the previous good measurement is used in its place, until it becomes updated.

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Air Temperature Plot

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Air Pressure (mb)

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Snow Depth (m)

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Ice Thickness (m)
CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Logger Temperature (deg C)
CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: IMB Battery Voltage (V)
CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Temperature Profile Through Air, Snow, Ice and Water

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord: Air, Snow, Ice, Water Temperature profile 2

CRREL IMB at Grise Ford, NU: Air, Snow, Ice, Water Temperature Profile 2

CRREL IMB at Grise Fjord, NU: Air, Snow, Ice, Water Temperatures String 1