Welcome to Alaska NSF EPSCoR

 

Alaska NSF EPSCoR improves Alaska's scientific capacity by engaging in research projects supported through National Science Foundation and state funds. EPSCoR is in the third year of "Fire and Ice," a five-year project to study climate-driven changes to Alaskan wildfire regimes and coastal ecosystems. For more information check out our brochure and one-page summaries of each component of the program: Boreal Fires; Coastal Margins; and Diversity, Education and Workforce Development. You can also view posters, presentations and publications from Fire and ice researchers.

The national NSF EPSCoR organization also supports Alaska through other funding streams. Check out this poster for more information on the timeline and structure of NSF EPSCoR in Alaska.

 

 EPSCoR news

 

DEW Boreal Fires Curriculum

fireWe've posted a 5-lesson fire science curriculum aimed at 3rd-5th grades. The lessons were developed by the Fire & Ice DEW team in collaboration with the BLM Campbell Creek Science Centerand the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District 21st Century Learning Program.

STEM success stories

HughesEPSCoR is showcasing the unique characteristics that Alaskans bring to STEM by sharing a series of interviews with former University of Alaska students in successful STEM careers. The first interviews are with Liz Dennett, who works for Amazon Web Services; Thomas Hughes, an engineer for the Alaska DOT; and Fairbanks pediatrician Carla Cartagena De Jesus (pictured).


New videos and highlights

fireOur video production team has been busy! We have four new videos up on our YouTube page:

"Fire & Ice Project Overview" is a brief animated introduction to the Fire & Ice project.

"The McKinley Fire: Rebuilding and Lessons Learned" is an overview of the 2019 McKinley Fire, which burned a 10-mile long swath alongside the Parks Highway. The video has been nominated for a Learnie Award.

"Fire & Ice Coastal Margins Research" is a thorough overview of our research on the Gulf of Alaska.

"Dev Space Development Tools" puts a hammer through the wringer to demonstrate some of the capabilities of the Dev Space facility.

There's a also a Tanana Chiefs Conference video showing footage of some of the TCC/Boreal Fires fieldwork in the Chena River watershed this summer.

In addition, we've put together two new PDF highlights; one is about our research collaborations with the Tanana Chiefs Conference and the other is a list of our 2021 Seed Grant awardees.

McKinley Fire Brochure
Fire & Ice researchers have collaborated with the Alaska Fire Science Consortium to create a new wildfire safety brochure. The document is based on interviews with wildfire agency staff and with residents of the area devastated by 2019's McKinley Fire. The 4-page brochure includes key tips in the areas of fire preparedness, evacuation and recovery.
 
NSF Track-4 solicitation

The NSF has released a solicitation for "Track-4" awards, which fund non-tenured faculty to travel to private, governmental, or university research centers across the country for extended research visits. Awards are for up to $300,000 over up to two years. This year the NSF is also offering “Track-4: FAST” awards, which fund researchers at certain types of institutions (including UAA and UAS) to collaborate with scientists at NASA research centers.

Interested UAA researchers should contact Aaron Dotson at addotson@alaska.edu for more information, and UAS researchers contact Paula Martin at pjmartin2@alaska.edu and cc Tom Thornton at tthornto@alaska.edu. The NSF submission deadline is April 26. (UAF researchers are subject to an internal campus deadline which has already passed.)

The NSF will hold Zoom "office hours" to answer questions about the awards at 11 AM on March 17 and 31 and April 21; email questions to cwhitley@nsf.gov in advance.


New monthly newsletter

We've begun sending out a monthly email called "Fire & Ice Essentials" to individuals involved in the Fire & Ice project. Its main focus is on funding opportunities, and it also includes notes about upcoming conferences and other events, as well as project news and products.

We still plan to continue with quarterly newsletters, which will be aimed more at an external audience.


Boreal Fires faculty hire

mugWe're pleased to announce the hire of Simon Zwieback as an Assistant Professor of Remote Sensing with the UAF Geophysical Institute. Zwieback holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH Zurich), and an M.S. in Geodesy and Geophysics and a B.S. in Geodesy and Geoinformatics from the Vienna Institute of Technology in Austria. He’s held postdoctoral and professional positions at ETH Zurich and a postdoc at the University of Guelph in Canada, and most recently worked as a Research Associate at the Geophysical Institute. His research interests include remote sensing and permafrost land surface processes, and he’ll work with the Boreal Fires component.


Program brochure

We've printed out a brochure for the Fire & Ice project. Hard copies are available on campus; email Tom Moran to arrange a pickup or dropoff.


Research Workspace videos

We've posted 17 videos on our YouTube channel that explain how to use various facets of the Research Workspace, the depository for Fire and Ice data.