This video shows how we collect samples of sea ice to study the microbiology of the organisms found inside the ice by drilling out an ice core. The work shown here took place in spring 2012 on the frozen Chukchi Sea near Barrow Alaska. We drill out the ice core, usually in several segments because it is so thick, then we measure the ice temperature, and cut it into manageable sections for further analyses back at the lab.
Near the end of the clips is demonstration of the porosity of sea ice, which is very different from the freshwater ice most people are used to. The fact that sea ice is porous is key to understanding how microorganisms can live inside the ice. Porosity means that there is habitable space with liquid water inside the ice where specialized organisms can thrive.
You may also be interested in the other videos in this album:
The Arctic's Secret Garden
for more information about the work of my lab group.