Instruments for polar and glacial environments

We are keen to build your instruments for you, saving you the considerable time and effort needed to develop rugged measurement systems. Let us know what you have in mind – our instruments can be tailored to your needs. Get in touch for a quote!

Ice motion tracker “Alberto”

Our ice motion trackers are stand-alone GNSS units for monitoring the movement of the surface are positioned on. Ideal for sea ice or fast-flowing outlet glaciers. The solar-powered ice motion trackers can be left unattended for several years, and transmit their coordinates for you to receive in your email inbox or through our data portal. Not only does this provide real-time insights into ice dynamics, it also allows swift localization and recovery during field visits. The units are extremely rugged and easy to set up. For high-precision positioning we can equip the units with dual-frequency receivers.

Ice ablation tracker

Designed for measuring ice ablation in inaccessible glaciated regions, our draw wire ice ablation trackers (DWIATs) are equipped with rugged tripods withstanding severe storms and large forces by winter snow accumulation, yet are easy to transport and assemble. The units can track up to 14 m of ablation until redrilling of the wire is required. As with the “Alberto”, the units are solar powered and use GNSS positioning for tracking ice motion. Data are stored locally in the datalogger, and transmitted to your email inbox or our data portal. DWIATs can be outfitted with additional sensors.

Surface mass balance tracker

Our SMB trackers are essentially DWIATs with snow height measurement capability. Where the draw wire measures ice ablation, a sonic height ranger keeps track of the snow layer seasonally deposited on the ice surface. For low-accumulation areas we mount the sonic ranger on the side of the box (1.2 m), while for regions with ample winter snowfall we install the instrument on a mast.

Glacier weather station

Our glacier weather stations (GWSs) measure the meteorological variables relevant to your research including air temperature, humidity, pressure, and wind speed and direction. Based on the design of the DWIAT, these solar-powered units can withstand large forces by wind and snow compaction, and transmit their location and measurements to you in near real time while storing a backup locally. The weather stations can be outfitted to measure surface mass balance (ablation/accumulation), shortwave and longwave radiation, subsurface temperatures, and whichever additional variables your research may benefit from.

Polar time lapse camera

Our time lapse camera systems are designed to remain operational in extreme cold and dark conditions for extended periods. The materials used are chosen for the unit to survive high wind stress, sand blasting, rodent attack, and other threats to instrumentation in polar and high-altitude regions. Our units can work with both SLR or GoPro technology. Ideal for monitoring glacier calving, glacier movement, meltwater flow, changes in snow cover, and other process too slow for conventional video to capture.

Thermistor string

We produce thermistor strings that allow you to measure subsurface temperatures with precision. Hand-made by our technicians and entirely constructed from their basic components, our thermistor strings will meet your requirements exactly. The strings can be used in snow, ice, water, soil, or rock.

Robotic observational platform

Through our partner Polar Research Equipment we offer robotic data collection services. These robots are exceptionally useful on glaciers and ice sheet, as their low ground pressure allows them to operate in snow-covered crevassed regions inaccessible to humans. Even on safe ground, robots can tow more instrumentation, for a longer period, and faster than humans can.