College’s North Pole Expedition Put on Ice

Aug 15th, 2003 | By | Category: 15-1: Indigenizing Our Future, Tribal College News

Bay Mills Community College in collaboration with NASA-Goddard Space Flight Center sent a team of eight researchers to the North Pole last April. The team included four students and one instructor from the tribal college in Brimley, MI, and three other area science teachers. At the new North Pole drifting station, they mapped ice floe data and set up monitoring devices to monitor various pollutants as the floe moves around the Arctic Ocean.

Speaking for the participants, Bob Dickinson of BMCC said, “We did some real science in a hostile environment.” Despite the minus 22 F temperatures, the participants said they would return “in a heartbeat.” The Bay Mills team worked with the NOAA/Cold Regions Research Engineering Lab (CRREL) and Centre Pole, a Russian non-profit team, on a floating ice floe near the North Pole. They discovered that the ice floe was not a single block but a layer cake of ice and snow, with some layers moving independently from one another.

Participants who had never been in an elevator found themselves flying in a Russian jet to Ice Station Borneo and then a helicopter to the final outpost. Activities were webcast and made available for internet viewing.

For more information, contact Bob Dickinson at BMCC (906) 248-3354 or visit the college website, www.bmcc.edu. Click on “The Great North Pole Waasnoodeg Expedition” to see PowerPoint presentations of the trip.

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