Date of Award
Master of Science in Engineering Management
Department of Systems Engineering and Management
Diedrich Prigge V, PhD.
The DoD is planning over $500M in military construction on Eielson Air Force Base (AFB) within the next three years. This construction program will expand the footprint of facilities and change parts of the storm water management scheme, which may have second order effects on the underlying permafrost layer. These changes in permafrost will drive engineering decision making at local and regional levels, and help shape the overall strategy for military readiness in the Arctic. Little site-specific knowledge exists on the human caused effects to permafrost at this location. In 2016, the permafrost degradation rates at Eielson AFB were modeled using the Geophysical Institute Permafrost Laboratory (GIPL) 2.1 model and limited available geotechnical and climate data. Model results indicated a degradation of the discontinuous permafrost layer at Eielson AFB of at least 7 meters in depth over the next century. To further refine an understanding of the geophysics at Eielson AFB and help engineers and commanders make more informed decisions on engineering and operations in the arctic, this project established two long term permafrost monitoring stations near the future construction sites. The data set generated by these stations are the first of their kind at Eielson AFB and represent the first modern systematic effort in the DoD to quantify permafrost condition before, during, and after construction activities. In addition to better understanding the effects of construction activity, we hope to provide awareness and better stewardship for permafrost as a fragile and important natural resource present on many federally owned installations.
DTIC Accession Number
Edlund, Christopher A.J., "Quantifying Permafrost Extent, Condition, and Degradation Rates at Department of Defense Installations in the Arctic" (2018). Theses and Dissertations. 1889.