Scientific Drilling in the Chukchi Sea: Linking North Pacific and Arctic Ocean History

March 14-16, 2013 – Columbus, Ohio
Convener: Leonid Polyak


This workshop funded by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership and IODP Management International brought together members of various research groups involved in the existing drilling proposals as well as surveying and investigation of the Chukchi and Beaufort seas and adjacent areas of the Arctic Ocean. The exchange of information and ideas between these groups is critical for outlining the major directions of further research, especially in relation to scientific drilling. To facilitate drilling development, the workshop explored the possibilities of linking the existing proposals within the IODP structure and discussed sites that could be drilled with the JOIDES Resolution. This entailed discussing a range of issues including: scientific themes/questions, key sites, site survey data needed, approach/proxies, research coordination and data exchange. The workshop program included talks, posters, and breakout groups designed to address the fesability of drilling targets in addressing the key scientific themes. The themes discussed combine paleoclimate and tectonic objectives including the Amerasian basin evolution, the role of the Bering Strait gateway, the effect of sea-level fluctuations on sedimentation at the Chukchi/Beaufort margin, the impact of glaciations on this continental margin, and the histrory of sea ice and oceanic environments under changing climatic conditions. Recommendations from the workshop emphasize exploring new scientific problems that could be solved by means of ocean drilling, coordinating research planning and activities between interested groups, maximizing the use of existing data, seeking synergies with industry for site surveys and potentially drilling, and developing research programs to address scientific challenges specific to the Arctic environments. For more information about the workshop, please visit the Byrd Polar Research Center’s website and download the workshop report (pdf).

Steering Committee
Leonid Polyak, Byrd Polar Research Center, Ohio State University
Julie Brigham-Grette, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Bernard Coakley, University of Alaska Fairbanks
Ruediger Stein, Alfred Wegener Institute
Matt O’Regan, Stockholm University
Seung-Il Nam, Korean Polar Research Institute
Tatsuhiko Sakamoto, Mie University and JAMSTEC
Guillaume St-Onge, University of Quebec at Rimouski

U.S. Science Support Program
IODP Management International