Some observations on permafrost distribution at a lake in the Mackenzie delta, N.W.T., Canada

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Journal titleArctic
Pages162175; # of pages: 14
SubjectPermafrost; Soils; freeze thaw cycles; melting point; lakes; drilling
AbstractThe thawing effect of bodies of water in contact with permafrost is a major concern in northern construction. Improper drainage or disrupted natural drainage which allows water to pond adjacent to buildings, roads or any structure results in increased thawing of the permafrost. The determination of the present disposition of the permafrost with respect to natural bodies of water would help to provide useful information for future engineering designs. The distribution of permafrost was determined adjacent to and underneath a lake in the Mackenzie Delta near the town of Inuvik N.W.T. The lake had an average diameter of about 900 ft. and a maximum water depth of 5 ft. At the center of the lake the sediments were unfrozen to bedrock, located at a depth of 230 ft. Permafrost occurred to a depth of 115 ft., 260 ft. and 196 ft. around the edge of the lake. These results were determined from borings carried out with a standard type diamond drill with a hydraulic feed. The frozen soil was sampled with a double-tube core barrel and in the center of the lake some undisturbed sampling was done using a piston-type sampler. Main conclusions are that the lake has caused the formation and maintenance of a deep thawed zone under the lake. The thawing effect is confined to the ground underlying the lake. Ground temperature measurements taken inland from the lake showed that the thermal influence of the lake extends for some distance beyond its perimeter.
Publication date
AffiliationNRC Institute for Research in Construction; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedNo
NRC number8252
NPARC number20386521
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Record identifier7afc6b11-232a-4407-aeb3-7274eafaf25f
Record created2012-07-25
Record modified2016-05-09
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