Welcome to Alaska EPSCoR
Alaska EPSCoR improves Alaska's scientific capacity by engaging in research projects supported through National Science Foundation and state funds. The organization is engaged in a five-year project entitled "Alaska Adapting to Changing Environments," which examines the mechanisms by which communities adapt to environmental and social change. For more information please see the project's Strategic Plan or our newsletters. Alaska EPSCoR also administers "The Modern Blanket Toss," a three-year educational project to excite high school students about science through experiments with unmanned aerial vehicles.
Orthorectified imagery coming online
The Alaska Satellite Facility and the Geographic Information Network of Alaska are completing a project to orthorectify aerial imagery of the three Alaska EPSCoR test case sites from the 1950's and 1980's. Combined with current imagery, researchers will now be able to easily compare landscape changes in the regions over time. The imagery will be available via the EPSCoR data portal. We've also created a PDF highlight about the project.
New EPSCoR video and highlights available
- "Tracking Yellow Cedar Decline" is a video detailing EPSCoR faculty Brian Buma's efforts to document yellow cedar's shrinking extent in Southeast Alaska
- "Marking the Spots" is a PDF about EPSCoR's new orthorectified test case maps
- "This Place Knows Us" is a PDF describing an outreach program with the Kenaitze Tribe
Liljedahl receives $2 million NSF award
Congratulations to Alaska EPSCoR faculty Anna Liljedahl, who has been awarded a $2 million, three-year National Science Foundation grant for a project to study methane release from thermokarst lakes.
Along with co-principal investigators Vladimir Romanovsky, David Barnes, and Katey Walter Anthony, Liljedahl will examine the thresholds and feedbacks that govern the release of methane from arctic lakes. While much of this methane originates from frozen sediments at the bottoms of lakes, some also comes from beneath the permafrost deep under the lake. Methane release from this sub-permafrost environment is a new and poorly understood feedback to the climate system, and a better understanding of the process will lead to improved estimates of methane release - which will in turn contribute to more accurate projections of climate change.
Liljedahl, a Research Assistant Professor with the UAF Institute of Northern Engineering Water and Environmental Research Center, is a key researcher in EPSCoR’s Northern Test Case, where she is studying the degradation of permafrost polygons and its potential effect on habitats and wildlife.
Arctic Adaptation Exchange Portal up and running
The Arctic Adaptation Exchange Portal website is now open to the public. Alaska EPSCoR has helped to develop and to host the portal, a project by the Arctic Council's Sustainable Development Working Group to make adaptation information available to researchers and northern communities across the globe.
Aquatic Chemistry course
Alaska EPSCoR faculty Srijan Aggarwal is offering a graduate-level Aquatic Chemistry course this fall at UAF and wants to get the word out. Details here.
Work underway on "Decision Theater North"
UAF and Alaska EPSCoR have begun to renovate a West Ridge Research Building conference room (above) into "Decision Theater North," a cutting-edge visualization facility designed to stimulate dialogue and decision-making by agencies, industry, and academia.
The theater will consist of a bank of high-definition monitors providing upwards of 30 million pixels of resolution, connected directly to UAF supercomputers. Theater users will be able to display the dynamics of a problem, and the effects of policy options, in a clear and compelling manner – thus helping experts to develop the best approaches and solutions.
Major construction on the facility is taking place this summer. Combined with improvements to the Planetarium and Visualization Theater at UAA, it will greatly increase EPSCoR's ability to assist Alaskans in adaptation decision-making.
Alaska TREND announces awards
Alaska EPSCoR has a unique partnership with the Alaska Technology Research and Development Center (Alaska TREND), which provides funding to help Alaskan startup companies apply for federal small business grants. TREND is pleased to announce the award of seven grants totaling $35,000 to a wide variety of businesses across the state:
• Kodiak Electric Vessel LLC (Kodiak) for “Variable-speed and serial hybrid power generation”
• Oxergy Inc. (Auke Bay) for “Ultra-compact additively manufactured thermochemical reactors for hydrothermal applications”
• BhaisaPi Tech LLC (Fairbanks) for “Microfluidic chips for time-resolved media mining”
• Be Cool Pharmaceutics LLC (Fairbanks) for “A1 adenosine agonists as anti-seizure, anti-shivering and neuroprotective adjuncts for targeted temperature management for small community hospitals”
• PATHseq Diagnostics Inc. (Fairbanks) for “Simultaneous detection and identification of all hepatitis-C genotypes and viral load using next-generation sequencing technology”
• Cereon Biotechnology LLC (Fairbanks) for “Rescue of cognition deficits with an FDA-approved nutraceutical blunting inflammatory and oxidative stress in dementias”
• V-Adapt Inc. (Fairbanks) for “Automated infrared imaging system for detection of small-scale features and high frame rate capture of explosion events”
Drew is final EPSCoR hire
Alaska EPSCoR is pleased to welcome its newest faculty hire, Elaine Drew. Drew, an applied medical anthropologist, has accepted a position with the University of Alaska Fairbanks Department of Anthropology and will do computational social science work for EPSCoR.
Drew was previously an Assistant Professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Department of Family and Community Medicine, where she worked with indigenous, ethnic minority, and underserved communities utilizing a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach. She has authored numerous articles on CBPR and ethics review, as well as cross-cultural research on diabetes, coronary heart disease, and hypertension. She most recently worked on funded cancer and diabetes prevention projects with different cultural communities across Wisconsin. For more information visit her UAF faculty page.
Drew is the sixth and final UA faculty hire made through the current Alaska EPSCoR research program.
EPSCoR funds RAP students
Congratulations to UAF Resilience and Adaptation Program students Jenell Larsen (top) and Tracie Curry (bottom), who are receiving Alaska EPSCoR support for their summer research internships. Larsen will work with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Eskimo Walrus Commission to assess reproductive changes to Pacific female walruses in the Bering Sea over a 40-year span. Curry will intern with the Wainwright Traditional Council and the Aklak School, collecting, collating and posting past research related to local coastal social-ecological change.
For more information
For more information on Alaska EPSCoR, please see the below documents:
The Strategic Plan outlines Alaska EPSCoR's goals and methods for its current research project, which runs from 2012-17.
The Alaska Science and Technology Plan, which prioritizes the state's S&T activities, was crafted with extensive EPSCoR input.
EPSCoR acknowledgement and logos
By our grant terms, any person receiving benefit from Alaska EPSCoR must acknowledge it in any publications, presentations, websites, newsletters, dissertations, theses, etc.
Please use the following language: "Acknowledgement to (or "Support from") Alaska EPSCoR NSF award #OIA-1208927 and the state of Alaska."