What Are They Doing?

Most of the time, prevailing winds cause a huge area of the Beaufort Sea to circulate in a clockwise (anticyclonic) direction; this circulation is know as the Beaufort Gyre. The Beaufort Gyre contains the major reservoir of fresh water stored in the Arctic Ocean, and learning more about how the Beaufort Gyre accumulates and releases fresh water as conditions change will improve understanding of ocean circulation in the Arctic Ocean.

The Beaufort Gyre team measured ice thickness, ocean temperature, salinity, and bottom pressure by deploying and retrieving bottom-tethered moorings. Other moorings, known as ice-tethered profilers, were attached to the sea ice to observe and broadcast ocean properties in real time. The Beaufort Gyre Expedition was part of the Joint Ocean Ice Study being conducted on a Canadian Coast Guard Icebreaker in collaboration with scientists from the Institute of Ocean Sciences in Canada and JAMSTEC in Japan. The research team has worked in this area on annual cruises with scientists from Canada, the U.S., China, and Japan since 2003. Click here to go to the Beaufort Gyre Exploration Project Page.

Where Are They?

The team traveled to and from Kugluktuk, Nunavut, Canada where they used a helicopter to board the Canadian Icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent. From there they traveled north into the Beaufort Sea.

Latest Journals

Home. I arrived at RDU about 10:30PM Friday night. My husband and I hugged, my sons carried my luggage and my daughter did not let go of my hand for a long time. I slept for 2 days, awoke Monday morning and went to school. I met my advisory for the first time. The Ward Advisory: DA 2008-09…
LSSL Ship's Log: 19082008 2209- Rosette secured on board.  Underway to Kugluktuk,  485 nautical miles. At 2210 on 19 Aug 2008, Third Mate Marian Punch piped, "We have finished work at the last science station.  We are going home." After 32 days at sea, we are coming home.   We have seen and done…
After taking on fuel we are steaming to our last set of stations at 72N, 133W. This route will be through the last ice of the cruise. We had to go 13 miles out of our way to go around this huge floe. I am fascinated by the ice so I am spending the last hours possible observing the ice. Many…
We have been here at 69N, 133W waiting for the fuel barge for the past 24 hours. It is late. While it is frustrating to have to wait, this situation reminds us that it is not worth getting worked up over something we cannot control. We use the time to catch up on data analysis and to pack.…
Beaufort Sea
Project Funded Title
Beaufort Gyre Observing System
Gerty Ward - Teacher
Durham Academy

Gerty Cori Ward grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. Camping was a family tradition, and she spent summers canoe tripping through Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada. She comes from a family with a strong scientific tradition (her grandparents shared the 1947 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their work on the biochemistry of carbohydrates), but after graduation from Vassar College with a degree in Economics, she worked in the finance industry. After three years the call of destiny was simply too strong, so she went back to school and earned a Ph.D. in molecular genetics from North Carolina State University. As an adult, after wearing many hats, she became a science teacher to strengthen the connection between scientists in the field and students in the classroom. Ms. Ward now happily teaches middle school science at Durham Academy in Durham, North Carolina. Her classroom motto is, "when in doubt, doubt!" and she hopes to empower her students to look critically at the scientific claims that shape our world.

Andrey Proshutinsky - Researcher
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Andrey Proshutinsky is the Principal Investigator of the Beaufort Gyre Exploration program and a Senior Scientist in WHOI's Physical Oceanography Department. Dr. Proshutinsky has more than 25 years of experience studying the Arctic Seas, and has produced numerous publications concerning regional oceanography and meteorology, climate change, numerical modeling of ice and water dynamics, Arctic Ocean tides and storm surges, and Northern Sea Route climatology and navigation conditions.

Rick Krishfield - Researcher
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Rick Krishfield works for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. His scientific expertise includes arctic oceanography and biogeochemistry, air-ice-ocean interactions, and ice flow dynamics and kinematics. Mr. Krishfield has extensive field experience in the Arctic. He hopes that Ms. Ward will bring a fresh viewpoint and help to interest the general public and school children in scientific research.

Ocean Dynamics Beaufort Sea Resources

Article advertising and highlighting the Live from IPY! event with Gerty Ward from the CCGC Louis S St-Laurent from the Beaufort Sea.

This Live from IPY! event was with PolarTREC Teacher Gerty Ward, and scientists Sarah Zimmerman, Rick Krishfield, and Brian Hunt who are all participating in oceanographic research on board the CCGC Louis S. St-Laurent on the Beaufort Sea. There were about 120 people in attendance. The beginning part of the presentation is composed of recordings from Gerty Ward and the

Online version of The News & Observer news paper article highlighting Gerty Ward's participation in a PolarTREC expedition on the Beaufort Sea. Gerty will be working with Rick Krishfield and other scientists on a Canadian icebreaker studying ocean currents and more!

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