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MAIN PAGE > Journal "Arctic and Antarctica" > Rubric "Permafrost and ground ice of the Arctic, Antarctic and mountain regions"
Permafrost and ground ice of the Arctic, Antarctic and mountain regions
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Isotopic variations in the ice core of palsa and lithalsa pp. 1-49


Abstract: Frozen mounds are the object of the study, the formation of which is associated with segregation of ice and moisture migration to the freezing front. Two varieties are considered as follows: typical palsa in the peat bogs, and lithalsa – ice-mineral (and sometimes mineral-ice) mounds in mineral dispersed sediments. A review of the isotopic composition of seasonal and perennial frozen mounds is presented. Three main sources of water for lithalsa and palsa are distinguished. The main research method is the analysis of oxygen and hydrogen isotopic composition of the ice cores of the lithalsa and palsa. The new results of the study are as follows: a) the isotope composition of the segregated ice of the palsa and lithalsa cores is usually quite homogeneous: variations in oxygen rarely exceed 2-3‰; b) there is a definite correspondence between the isotopic composition of the ice of the palsa and lithalsa and the isotopic composition of the water of surrounding bog is lighter by 2-3‰; this is a result of fractionation during the freezing of the bog waters; c) comparison of the isotopic composition in the segregated ice of the palsa and lithalsa, atmospheric, surface and boggy waters revealed a close isotope-oxygen and isotope-hydrogen composition of them.
Khimenkov A.N., Vlasov A.N., Sergeev D.O., Volkov-Bogorodskii D.B., Stanilovskaya J.V. - Fluid dynamic geosystems in the permafrost. Part 1. Cryohydrodynamic geosystems pp. 1-19


Abstract: This article is devoted to the consideration of issues related to the formation of local zones with signs of dynamic metamorphism in permafrost. Data on the cryogenic formation structures with traces of plastic and discontinuous deformations, as well as signs of flow in a solid, liquid and gaseous form are analyzed. The possibility of using the fluid dynamical approach in the study of dynamic processes in the cryolithozone is considered. The development of the fluid dynamic topic necessitates consideration of non-traditional geocryological objects associated with fluid formations in the cryolithozone. The main attention is given to the structural method associated with the analysis of the features of the cryogenic formations structure and the method of actualism associated with the analysis of the conditions for the fluids formation. In the first part of the article, the paragenetic relationships between the features of the frozen soils formations on the Arctic coasts, the formation of inland water flows and the structural and texture features of the cryogenic formations are considered. A section of marine sediments in the area of the Nei-To lake in Central Yamal was chosen as the research object.
Khimenkov A.N., Stanilovskaya J.V., Sergeev D.O., Vlasov A.N., Volkov-Bogorodskii D.B., Merzlyakov V - The development of explosive process in cryolithic zone due to formation of Yamal Crater pp. 13-37


Abstract: The subject of this research is the natural explosive processes into cryolithic zones. The object of this research is the Yamal Crater. The authors meticulously examine the groups of the natural explosive processes in the territory of distribution of permafrost. A new approach towards the theory of the crater of gaseous discharge is proposed. It is based on the migration mechanism of gas fluids from the zones of gas hydrates disassociation into the overlying thickness of permafrost. The dissociation zone forms in segments of the local heatup through the heat input from the top. The authors demonstrate the gradualism of processes of preparing the explosive process that formed the Yamal Crater, as well as calculate the pressure of ejection of the frozen layer in emergence of the Yamal Crater. The work provides characteristic to the four phases of preparation of the natural explosive processes, considers various scenarios of such in cryolithic zone, as well as creation of the model of the heat and mass transfer processes alongside tense and distorted situation in permafrost that contain gas hydrated in terms of temperature variation and pressure. The following conclusions were made: the explosions of hydrolaccoliths and emergence of the craters of gaseous discharge belong to the same group of processes – physical explosions of natural origin; preparation of explosive processes in permafrost passes through several stages; in preparing explosions of natural origin in permafrost, a significant role is played by the migration of gas fluids.
Khimenkov A.N. - Parageneses in permafrost zone pp. 15-52


Abstract: The goal of this research lies in examination of the possibility of application of the structurally paragenetic method as a methodological direction in studying permafrost formations; as well as in formulation of the theoretical principles for studying cryogenic formations on the basis of paragenetic approach. For achieving the set objective, the author substantiated the provisions on the necessity of using paragenetic constructs in geocryology; justifies the insufficiency of genetic approach in analyzing the emergence of cryogenic formations; considers the possibility of using the structural paragenetic analysis to restore the geodynamic conditions of emergence of the various cryogenic formations; presents classification of different parageneses of the various cryogenic formations occurrent in the cryolithozone. As a result of this research, the author was able to demonstrate the need for shifting from the genetic method of studying of permafrost formation towards the structural-paragenetic method. The main conclusion lies in the statement that cryogenic geosystems of any rank represent the patterned paragenetic complexes that reflect both, the ongoing processes in emergence of permafrost formation, as well as in the already formed frozen arrays. The article examines the already existing genetic classification of the genetic types of subsurface ice sheets; substantiates the application of paragenetic approach in studying the subsurface ice sheets; develops the basic framework of structura-paragenetic method that views permafrost formations as the hierarchically arranged cryogenic geosystems, consisting of the paragenetically connected associations and structural elements.
Vasil'chuk A.C., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Pollen and hydrochemical diagrams and radiocarbon age of the Late Pleistocene polygonal massif in the mouth of the Mongatalyangyakha River, Yavay Peninsula pp. 16-29


Abstract: The object of this research is the organic-mineral deposits of the Late Pleistocene polygonal ice-wedge complex. They are studied in the outcrop of the second terrace, located on the left bank of the Mongatalyangyakha River, 3 km west of the estuary (71 ° 58'60 "N, 75 ° 16'0" E), on the Yavay Peninsula in the north of the Gydan Peninsula. The botanical composition of allochthonous peat in the upper part of the section is dominated by the remnants of Ledum palustre, and in the organic-mineral sediment the remains of Drepanoladus fluitans, Calliergonella cuspidata (or Calliergon cordifolium) are prevalent. A field outcrop study was performed; three wells were drilled. Palynological and hydrochemical diagrams were constructed and the radiocarbon age of the Late Pleistocene polygonal massif was determined. The main conclusions of the study are: 1. The age of the organic-mineral deposits varies from 30,200 to 21,900 years BP. 2. The rate of accumulation of organic-mineral deposits in the Karginsky time at the mouth of the Mongatalyangyakha River is about 0.25mm/year. 3. According to the palynological analysis, three local pollen zones are distinguished.
Khimenkov A.N., Koshurnikov A.V., Karpenko F.S., Kutergin V.N., Gagarin V.E., Sobolev P.A. - On the filtration of gases in permafrost formations in light of the problem of degassing lithosphere of the Earth and formation of natural explosive processes in the cryolithozone pp. 16-38


Abstract: The object of this research is the problem of gas filtration in permafrost formations. Currently, geocryology identifies the movement capability of gas fluids is only within the thawed formations. The subject of this study is the processes substantiating and accompanying redistribution of gas in the gas emission craters, as well as in the samples of artificial ice exposed to gas pressure. The authors examine the summarized data on the structure of craters and conditions for their emergence such as: the zones of accumulation of subterranean gas with abnormally high pressure in the permafrost strata; filtration of gas into high-temperature frozen rocks and subsurface ice; formation of gas-saturated ice soil rods and their explosive destruction. Particular attention is turned to the laboratory examination of gas filtration in frozen rocks and ice. The main research method became the comparative data analysis on the changes of properties of the frozen soils and ice as they war up within negative temperatures. Exploring the samples of ice exposed to gas pressure, the authors apply the methods of textural and structural studies in the passing, reflected and polarize light. It is established that the frozen rocks and subsurface ice allow gas filtration in the conditions of forming the corresponding ratio of characteristics of the rocks (strength, deformative, structural) that depend on their temperature and pressure of the underlying soil gas. It is revealed that the aforementioned ratio is determined by the geological, landscape and climatic conditions. With the help of structural studies, the authors are first to describe the processes accompanying gas filtration within ice in the laboratory conditions.
Averkina T.I. - Distribution, age and genesis of the synchrogenic sands on the Russian territories pp. 20-28


Abstract: The object of this research is the synchrogenic sands that developed in the Russian territories. They are present in the coastal areas of the young Timan-Pechora basub and Pai-Khoi, north of the young West Siberian and Yano-Kolyma platforms, north and the center of the ancient Siberian platform; young Verkhoyano-Chukotka and ancient Baikal-Patomsk orogens, the upper zone of the ancient Altai-Sayan orogen, present riftogene Baikal as well as on some islands of the Arctic shelf. A schematic map of the extent of different genesis Quaternary sands within the cryolithozone of Russia is compiled. The main regularities of the spatial distribution syncryogenic sands have been identified on this basis and by analysis and synthesis of existing publications on the topic. Most often syncryogenic sands are part of Upper Pleistocene-Holocene complexes of marine, marine deltaic and alluvial genesis, rarely lacustrine and alluvial, glaciolacustrine, glaciofluvial and eolian. Additionally, more ancient Middle Pleistocene-Holocene formations on the West Siberian and Yano-Kolyma platforms and Early Pleistocene-Holocene on the Siberian platform are exposed. Syncryogenic sands occur in the upper part of the section of different geomorphic elements and often overlain epicryogenic one.
Vasil'chuk A.C., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Pollen characteristic of the Matyuisale Holocene ice-wedge complex in the north of the Gydan Peninsula pp. 29-47


Abstract: The two outcrops of Holocene peat with ice wedges in the mouth of Salemlekabtambda River in the Mammoth Peninsula are the object of the study, such as Holocene peat in the bog meadow of Kara Sea and the peat inset in the 15 m terrace. Ice wedges occur in the meadow bog sediments, their height is about 1.5 m. The height of ice wedges in the terrace sediments is about 4.5 m. We studied pollen spectra both, in the ice wedges and their host sediments, as well as determined isotope composition of ice wedges. Series of 14C ages have been obtained. The obtained isotopic and pollen data demonstrate that in the North of the Gydan Peninsula the Holocene optimum was the time of increase of climate continentality. Summer was warmer by 1-3°C than today, and winter was by 2-3°C colder. The intensity of frost cracking and ice wedge formation increased both in organic and mineral alluvial and alluvial-marine sediments.
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Budantseva N.A., Chizhova J.N. - Rapid palsa degradation near Abez' settlement, northeast of European Russia pp. 30-52


Abstract: The object of the study is the palsa located near Abez' settlement, in the Komi Republic, the northeast of European Russia. The authors re-examined the palsa in 2001, 2016 and 2017. The main research methods were: scrutinous fixation of the palsa morphology and its comparison with the photographs of different years; radiocarbon dating of peat; study of stable carbon isotopes in peat profiles. In 15 years' time, almost complete degradation of the palsa is observed. The height of the palsa has reduced by more than 2 m. Now their height does not exceed 1.5 m. During the period of 1960-2015, the average annual air temperature at nearby meteorological stations had been increasing by 2° C averagely. The most probable reason for the rapid degradation of the palsa in the area of Abez' settlement is a combination of a positive climatic trend and significant draining of the lake-marsh basin as a result of the construction of the Bovanenkovo-Ukhta gas pipeline, which crosses the southern part of the palsa. It is shown that the palsa in the southern regions - in the area of the Bugry Polyarnye and Nikita stations - have no signs of degradation.
Maslakov A., Belova N.G., Baranskaya A.V., Romanenko F.A. - Massive ice beds of the eastern coast of the Chukchi Peninsula under climate change: some results of the 2014-2018 expeditions pp. 30-43


Abstract: The article presents preliminary results of field studies of the outcrops of the eastern coast of the Chukchi Peninsula, containing massive ice beds. The expeditions were conducted in 2014–2018. Descriptions and photographs of ice and enclosing sediments are given. Four outcrops of ice up to 4.7 m thick and up to 45 m long are described within the Saint Lawrence Bay and Mechigmensky Bay. The morphology of the massive ice bodies, a variety of ice structures and host sediments allow suggesting their polygenetic origin. The results of long-term active layer thickness monitoring indicated that the intensification of thaw slump events in the past four years is associated with the increase in the depth of thawing, which in 2018 reached highest values in over two decades. The formation of thaw slumps and associated thermocirques is cyclic. As the active layer thickness increases, their number increases, forming nested thermocirques, and as the thaw depth decreases, cryogenic creep slows down.
Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk J.Y., Maslakov A.A., Vasil'chuk A.C., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Chemical composition of Holocene ice wedges in the northeast of Chukotka pp. 34-53


Abstract: The Chukchi Peninsula or Chukotka Peninsula at about 66° N 172° W, is the eastmost peninsula of Asia. Its eastern end is at Cape Dezhnev near the village of Uelen. It is bordered by the Chukchi Sea to the north, the Bering Sea to the south, and the Bering Strait to the east. Most of the Chukchi Peninsula is occupied by highlands up to 1000 m a.s.l height. Lowlands are found, as a rule, near large lagoons. The main features of the area (from Anadyr' town to Lavrentiya) are represented by a slightly hilly relief formed by fluvial erosion and marine abrasion of the Mesozoic blocks. For the determination of the ion composition of ice wedges, ice samples were taken both horizontally with an interval of 10-12 cm and vertically with an interval of 10-15 cm. The ion composition of the ice was analyzed by ion chromatography method in the geochemistry laboratory of the Department of Landscape Geochemistry and Soil Geography of the Faculty of Geography of Lomonosov Moscow State University on the ion chromatograph "Stayer". The detection limit for chloride ion was 0.02 mg / l. The hydrochemical composition of snow, rivers and lakes water, segregated ice and partly of ice wedges was carried out in the hydrochemical laboratory of PNIIIS by acid-base titration. Continuous permafrost occurs everywhere beneath the ground surface. Taliks (up to 30-40 m thick) often occur underneath the largest thermokarst lakes and in the and under the lower reaches of large rivers. The temperature of the permafrost averages -10 ° C in the axial parts of the mountain ridges and -4 ... -6 ° C in river valleys and on the coasts. The thickness of the permafrost varies from 500-700 m in the highest parts of the ridges to 200-300 m in the interior valleys.
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Vasil'chuk A.C. - Types of cyclicality of the yedoma strata in the Mayn River valley (Chukotka) pp. 34-61


Abstract: The subject of the study is the cyclicality of the yedoma strata in the Mayn River valley of Southern Chukotka. The author explores the Late Pleistocene syngenetic strata containing syngenetic ice wedges in the Mayn River valley of Southern Chukotka: lacustrine and lacustrine-alluvial sediments in the Ledovy exposure outcrop, and lacustrine-alluvial sediments of the Ust’-Algan exposure. These strata are located close to each other, and formed with the diverse in lithological composition and facies sendiments: from coarse sand with pebble of river facies to silty facies, permeated with thick ice wedges of different configurations. The main research method is the field study of cryolithological structure of the natural exposures. The author also examines the radiocarbon age of the strata of the wedges, the oxygen-isotope and hydrochemical composition of ice wedges. The following conclusions were made:1. The hierarchy of the main types of cyclicity, observed in the studied syncryogenic strata is clarified;2. The duration of micro-, meso- and macro-cycles in formation of the yedoma strata of the Main River valley is determined- cyclite polygonal ice wedges in the section of lacustrine strata of the Ledovy exposure- heterocyclic polygonal ice wedges of in the section of lacustrine-alluvial yedoma of Ledovy exposure- heterocyclitic polygonal ice wedges in the  section of Ust’-Algan exposure.
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Budantseva N.A., Bartova A.V., Zimov S.A. - Variations of the stable oxygen isotopes in massive ice wedges of cyclical Yedoma of Stanchikovsky Yar on the Maly Anyui River pp. 37-56


Abstract: The subject of this research is the cryolithological and isotope-geochemical peculiarities of massive ice wedges found in the Yedoma formation of Stanchikovsky Yar on the Maly Anyui River – the left affluent of the Kolyma River. The study was carried out in August 2018. The Yedoma with a height of 25-35 m was found over the span of 4 km downstream the river from Anyuysk village. The massive ice wedges are exposed in over 20 fragments of Yedoma at different heights – from 10 to 35 m. The following methods were applied in the course of the research: cryolithological study of the exposed ice wedges and analysis of the stable oxygen isotope variations in ice wedge. It study demonstrates that the polygonal ice complex of the Yedoma formation of Stanchikovsky Yar, in all likelihood, is represented by 3-4 layered ice wedges. The heads of ice wedges are embedded at the approximate altitudes of 35, 25, 15 and 10 m above the level of Maly Anyui River. The narrowly buried ice wedges of 0.5 m thickness also indicate the layerage of structure of the complex. The age of the explored by the authors ice wedges varies between 25 and 35 and 25-29 ka. In this period, based upon the persistently low values of oxygen-isotope composition of massive ice wedges, the climatic conditions were fairly severe; the average winter air temperatures comprised –31, –33°С, while the average January could reach –46, –47°С.
Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Variations of oxygen isotopes in rudiments of the modern syngenetic ice wedges in the lower Kolyma River pp. 39-53


Abstract: The subject of this study is the change in oxygen isotopic values in rudiments of the modern ice wedges in the lower reaches of Kolyma River. The authors provide delta18O values from the Ambarchik creek and Pokhodsk in the north to mouth of the Omolon River and Kolymsky rural locality in south of the  region. The critical analysis on publications dedicated to Nizhnekolymsky District and the adjacent territories, which were compared by the oxygen isotopic data and winter air temperatures. Similar works on Alaska and Northern Canada are also analyzed. The key research method is field testing of the rudiments of modern ice wedges, as well as the analysis of publications containing the data of delta18O values in Nizhnekolymsky District. The main conclusions of conducted research consist in the confirmation of dependences, obtained approximately 30 years ago by Y. K. Vasilchuk on Siberia overall and Nizhnekolymsky District in particular, connecting the delta18O values in the rusiments of modern ice wedges with average January air temperatures. The authors trace the tends of variability of the delta18O values from north to south according to distance from the moisture source and increase the degree of continentality.
Chizhova J.N. - Natural experiment on formation of infiltration ice in the snow cover pp. 44-49


Abstract: The processes of isotope fractionation inside the snow cover during the formation of infiltration ice (ice interlayers, crusts) are considered. On the temperate glacier zones of infiltration, ice formations are very common, and an understanding of the processes of isotopic transformation during snow-ice transition is important for distinguishing the type of ice formation. In addition to recrystallization transformation of snow into ice on the glaciers, the formation of infiltration and superimposed ice occurs, which should be accompanied by isotopic fractionation due to the difference in the fractionation coefficients between vapor and liquid/ice (precipitation) and liquid and ice (congelation ice formation). A field experiment was performed on the formation of infiltration ice inside a snow column with artificial stimulation of snow melting from the surface. The main method was the study of the isotopic composition of oxygen and hydrogen of snow and ice. Primary snow was homogenized, after a 14-day experiment inside the snow columns, a differentiation of snow by the isotopic composition of oxygen and hydrogen occurred. The values of δ18О and δD are described by a regression equation with a slope 5. Such slope indicates water vapor diffusion processes. Infiltration ice on the isotopic composition of oxygen and hydrogen is slightly different from the original snow.
Khimenkov A.N., Vlasov A.N., Volkov-Bogorodskii D.B., Sergeev D.O., Stanilovskaya J.V. - Fluid dynamic geosystems in the permafrost. Part 2. Cryolithodynamic and cryogaseous dynamic geosystems pp. 48-70


Abstract: The second part of the article is devoted to the consideration of the conditions for the development of two types of fluids in permafrost: frozen soils, and ice flows and gas flows. This work is hampered by the lack of a corresponding conceptual and terminological base, developed classifications, systematized features, differentiation of genetically distinct dynamic formations in frozen soils. In this work, the conceptual fluid dynamics terminology used in geology is analyzed and the possibility of its use in geocryology is considered. The main attention is concentrated on the construction of phenomenological models for the fluids formation in permafrost, supplemented by the structural method and by the method of actualism. The conditions for the development of various types of lithogenous fluids are analyzed: through the formation of a nucleus of rigidity, the motion of frozen soils along the slope, subaquatic landslides, and folding at the lateral surface of growing ice wedges. Based on the analysis of the structure of the gas emission crater (Yamal Crater), the possibility and conditions of gas filtration through icy frozen soils are considered. A mathematical model of the pressure filtration of gas fluids in structurally heterogeneous soils is proposed on the basis of the Brinkman equation applied to the frozen soils.
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk J.Y., Vasil'chuk A.C., Garankina E.V., Chizhova J.N., S - Isotope-geochemical composition of massive ice beddings on the interfluve of the rivers Mordyakha and Seyakha (Mutnaya), Central Yamal Peninsula pp. 50-75


Abstract: The objects of this research is the massive ice beddings in the valley Mordyakha River valley, as well as the terrace of Seyakha River (Mutnaya) in the central part of Yamal Peninsula. First of the studied ice bedding outcrops is located the center of Yamal Peninsula, in the upper reaches of Mordyakha (68°11ʹ18ʺN, 68°51ʹ39ʺE), at absolute elevation of 66-70 m; the second one (70°23.4 N, 68°19.4 E) is located 0.6 km towards southwest of the field base GP-1 Bovanenkovo deposit and 5 km towards northwest of Bovanenkovo settlement, at absolute elevation of 87 m. The authors meticulously examine the structure of bedded deposits and peculiarities of their contacts with the enclosing rocks. The article studies the concentration of stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen in ice, composition of the main anions and cations, as well spore-pollen remains within ice. The following conclusions were made: a) the studied bedded deposits are classifies as intra-ground type; b) one of the main water source that formed massive ice were lake waters and talik water ; c) in the process of ice formation took place a significant isotope fractionation, which led to the formation of layers with isotope composition heavier than the original lake waters.
Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Weighting of isotopic composition of ice-wedge casts of Central Yakutia due to active evaporation of surface waters pp. 53-68


Abstract: The research object is the isotopic composition of oxygen and hydrogen of ice-wedge casts, surface waters and atmospheric precipitation in Central Yakutia near the Mammoth Mountain, where the conditions are favourable in summer for evaporation and continental salinization of permafrost and subsurface ice. Special attention is given to the analysis of high indexes of isotopic composition of ice-wedge casts of the late Pleistocene, which can’t be explained by higher winter temperatures during the formation of ice wedges. The authors use hydrochemical data showing the signs of continental salinization in the fragments of wedges with heavy isotope composition. The main research method is the definition of isotopic composition of oxygen and hydrogen in the ice. In graphic form, one of the indicators of evaporation is the evaporation line, whose inclination on the dependency diagram δ18О – δ2Н is around 5. The authors show that continental salinization of the landscapes of Central Yakutia can be explained by the combination of the processes of perennial freezing of sediments and evaporation during summer seasons. The authors design the system of indexes of continental salinization of cryogenic lacustrine-boggy landscapes on the basis of isotopic and hydrochemical data of surface waters and subsurface ice: 1 – abnormal heavy isotopic composition; 2 – isotopic composition indexes are on the evaporation line, whose angle of inclination (usually lower than 5) is lower that the angle of inclination of the global meteoric water line (8); 3 – high salinity of ice-wedge casts and sediments with prevailing continental salts. The obtained results are accurate and can be easily reproduced by any isotope laboratory in the world. 
Karnysheva E.A., Filippova S.N., Brushkov A.V. - Examination of the ability of microorganism cells to migration in various dispersion frozen rocks pp. 53-63


Abstract: This article presents the results of model experiments on the ability of microorganism cells to migrate in pore space of the various dispersion frozen soils: Neogene sand of the Mammoth Mountain (Central Yakutia), quartz sand and kaolin clay at a fixed nedagive temperature (-6.5°C). Currently, there are known the basic parameters of microbial transport in the soils; however, the existing data on possibility of their migration in frozen soils and rocks is either contradictory or absent. The study was carried out on the example cells of Bacillus cereus strain F. The experiments were conducted in deep-freeze at a fixed negative temperature throughout one year. The question on the possibility of microorganism cells migration in permafrost is relevant from the perspective of the paramount global life preservation issues, stratigraphy of the various permafrost arrays, as well as their dynamics in the conditions of climate warming and emergence of risks of bringing microflora with the unknown properties to the modern ecosystems. Throughout the observation period, there was detected no evidence of migration of the model bacterial cells in frozen soils. The author established that the pattern of change in the number of colony-forming cells of the model organism in inoculated part of the samples of frozen soils is greatly affected by the level of their dispersion and aggregation.
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Cyclocryostratigraphy of yedoma. Part 2 pp. 54-99


Abstract: The author shows that the purpose of cyclocryostratigraphy is to determine, characterize and interpret periodic or quasiperiodic variations in the cryostratigraphy of permafrost sections (mainly syncriogenic ones) and their use for refining the features of the formation of permafrost. The author formulates the concept of cryocyclitis as a complex of permafrost layers and their associations with ice wedges, characterized by the direction and continuity of the change in the cryostructures properties of the ground ice and its surrounding sediments, reflected in the location of the boundaries between them, which can be seen in a vertical section (in a borehole, outcrop, bore pit, etc.). The main research methods are the radiocarbon, stable isotope and geochemical ones. The study shows that often in the yedoma strata individual cyclites duplicate each other, thus demonstrating a continuous process. The author performs the cyclocryostratigraphic research of the structural features and development of the Late Pleistocene syngenetic ice wedge in the cyclical yedoma of the Asian Arctic: Western Siberia, Yakutia, Chukotka, Novosibirsk Islands, Alaska and northern Canada.Three cycles can be distinguished in the development of syngenetic ice wedges. Microcycles result from the changes in active-layer depth and the accumulation of a thin sedimentlayer over several years. Their vertical scale varies from centimetres to tens of centimetres, and their formation time ranges from one to hundreds of years. Mesocycles result from a change in the lake water level if ice-wedge formation took place on the banks or beneath shallow water. The vertical scale of mesocycles is a few metres, and their timescale usually varies from several hundred to a few thousand years. Macrocycles relate to a major change in the sedimentationregime or rarely – and mostly at the southern border of ice-wedge formation – with major climatic oscillations. The vertical scale of macrocycles numbers tens of metres, and their duration varies usually from many tens to sometimes hundreds of thousands of years.
Averkina T.I. - Peculiarities of spreading, age and genesis of epicryogenic sands across the territory of Russia pp. 57-65


Abstract: The object of this research is the epicryogenic sands developed in the territory Russia. They are located in all parts of the permafrost zone, but mostly concentrated within the ancient and young platforms. At the same time, within the zone of compact spreading of permafrost rocks, epicryogenic sands are often covered with syncryogenic sediments; and in the zone of joint spreading of thawed and frozen rocks are embedded in the surface. Sands of this type occur as part of glacial, aqueoglacial, glaciolacustrine, marine, alluvial-marine, glacial-marine, lacustrine-alluvial, alluvial and eolian genetic units of quaternary deposits. In certain districts, the epigenetic permafrost sands are identified as a part of the ancient pre-quaternary formations. In the Timan-Pechora platform it is the terrigene gray-colored formation of the Middle Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous; in the Western Siberia – the terrigene lignite-bearing Oligocene; in the Khatanga trough – the terrigene of Upper Cretaceous and Jurassic-Lower Cretaceous, as well as the coal-measure of the Upper Cretaceous. Within the limits of Vilyuy syneclise and Predverkhoyansk foredeep, the epicryogenic sands are confined to the molasse of Lower and Middle Jurassic, coal-bearing formations of Upper Jurassic–Lower Cretaceous, terrigene formations of Upper Cretaceous and Neogene. In the territories of folded mountain constructs, epicryogenic sandy soils are meagerly developed in hollows and river valleys as part of alluvial, lacustrine-alluvial, aqueoglacial and eolian quaternary complexes.
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Cyclocryostratigraphy of yedoma. Part 1. pp. 62-83


Abstract: The author formulates a new line of research of permafrost and, in particular, homogeneous yedoma, - cyclocryostratigraphy. Cyclo-cryostratigraphy studies the rotation of different vertical frozen soil units of permafrost sediments in yedoma sections. The study demonstrates the cyclicity in the flysch formations in pre-Quaternary and Quaternary sediments on the Black Sea coast, near the Novomikhailovskoye settlement., in the Berriasian-Valanginian exposure near the village of Konakhkend, Azerbaijan, in the Eocene sediments of the Navagir range, the northwestern spurs of the Caucasus, the Abrau peninsula, in interstratifying sands and sandy loams in the Nagym section in the mouth of the Olenyok channel. The cyclicity in the vertical arrangement of pseudomorphs and subterranean veins outside the permafrost zone has been investigated. The main research methods are lithological, cryostratigraphical, radiocarbon, isotope, geochemical. The author detects cyclicity during the field research, and verifies its parameters with analytical determinations. The main results of the study include the successive transition from flysch cycles to the cyclicity of clays and cyclostratigraphic features of paleo-sections with pseudomorphs and ground vein. The author analyzes mesocyclic bedding of ground veins and pseudomorphs in the sections of Western Europe: Aschersleben in Germany, Kesselt, Remicourt and Harmignies in Belgium. The author analyzes stratification of pseudomorphs in the Late Pleistocene stratum in the Grove section in the north of the Netherlands. In the north of Italy, in the valley of the Po river, a multi-tier complex of pseudomorphs in loess strata is considered. A scheme for stratification of pseudomorphs in the Kotkino area on the left bank of the Soyma River, the tributary of the Pechora River, is considered.
Novikova A.V., Baranskaya A.V., Sinitskiy A.I. - Upper Quaternary sediments of the central part of Gydan Peninsula (Lake Parisento) pp. 62-79


Abstract: The study is devoted to the late Pleistocene-Holocene paleogeography of the central part of the Gydan Peninsula in the area of the Parisento. The work covers the results of field studies in the area of Lake Parisento and in the middle reaches of the Gydansky Yuribey. The study is based on field data, radiocarbon and OSL - dating and correlation with data from previous studies. It was established that in the lower part of the sections, Kazan-Early-Zyrian (MIS 5-4) dark gray loams and sandy loams outcrop. Above lie the Kargin-Sartan (MIS 3-2) lacustrine, or lacustrine-alluvial gray horizontally and cross-stratified sands that make up the surface at elevations of 20-30 m in the vicinity of Lake Parisento. Kargin-Sartan (MIS 3-2) alluvial light-gray fine-grained sands with wave lamination interbedded with dark-gray sandy loams and loams were found on the right bank of Yuribey River in the southeast of the area. Above are the Sartan (MIS 2) and Holocene gray cover sandy loams and loams. They lie at the top of the sections at elevations of 40-50 m. Holocene peats are encountered on top of the sections at various geomorphological levels.
Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Salinity of Holocene sediments and massive ice-wedges in lower reaches of the Mongatalyangjyakha River of Yavay Peninsula pp. 66-83


Abstract: The object of this research is the massive ice-wedges and the enclosing Holocene sediments of the alluvial plain and a laida in the northwest of Gydan Peninsula in llower reaches of the Mongatalyangjyakha River. The authors analyze the distribution of chemical composition of sediments in depth, comparing with the structure of sediments. In examining the chemical composition of ice, particular attention is given to the determination of differentiation of mineralization and ionic composition within the range of a single wedge. For conducting the analysis of chemical composition, the authors picked out the pure ice from pits and exposures; the samples were additionally cleaned from the excessive mineral impurities. Some of the samples were filtered immediately after thawing. The parallel chemical analysis of water with sediment and filtered water demonstrated very similar results. The scientific novelty lies in determination of differentiation of ice wedged into the zones of uneven mineralization, which form as a result of shift in facial and hydrochemical situation during the growth of ice wedges. The main conclusions consists in the establishment of influence of the lagoon-marine water of Gydan Bay in lower reaches of Mongatalyangjyakha River, which manifested in the prevailing chlorine-sodium salinity of sediments, as well as in the development of differentiated by mineralization massive ice wedges, which were formed as the fresh thawed snow waters and river waters (on the alluvial plain) and the lagoon-marine water (on the laida).
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Vasil'chuk J.Y., Budantseva N.A., Vasil'chuk A.C., Trishin A.Y. - Isotopic and geochemical features of the Batagaika yedoma (preliminary results) pp. 69-98


Abstract: The subject of the study is the yedoma, which is found in the Batagaika crater (67°34'49 "N, 134°46'19" E), located 10 km southeast of Batagay settlement, Verkhoyansk settlement, the Sakha (Yakutia) Republic. The crater is located about 1.5 km downslope of the Kirgillyakh mountain; its absolute height is about 325 m. The main research methods are: fieldwork, analysis of oxygen and hydrogen stable isotopic composition, analysis of ion composition and content of dissolved forms of trace elements and their distribution in ice-wedges of the yedoma. Oxygen and hydrogen stable isotopic composition, ion composition and the content of the dissolved forms of minor and major elements were studied for the first time in ice-wedges of the Batagaika crater. It has been revealed that the ice-wedges of the Batagaika crater are of hydrocarbonate-calcium composition, a uniform content of minor and major elements is observed within each ice-wedge. The isotopic composition of the ice-wedges located in the upper (the average values of δ18O is –34.4‰, the value of δ2H is –266 ‰) and lower (the average value of δ18O is –35.7 ‰, the value of δ2H is –276‰) parts of the Batagaika crater indicates that the average January air palaeotemperature was from –51 to –55 °C.
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Paragenetic ensembles of ice wedges with ice of different origin pp. 71-112


Abstract: The study of the combinations of various types of ground and surface ice as paragenetic complexes are of particular interest, in order to understand the conditions of the ice formation. The following ice ensembles are examined: a) paragenetic combinations of ice wedge, ice with segregated and injection (intrusive) segregated ice in palsa and pingo cores, b) paragenetic combinations of ice wedge with massive ice, c) paragenetic combinations of ice wedge with ground icing (aufeis) and d) paragenetic combinations of ice wedge with glaciers and even icebergs ice. Among the main conclusions of the conducted research are the following claims: 1) Ice wedges form paragenetic combination with many types of underground and aboveground ice; 2) paragenesis of the wedges with anchor ice can be found in both, palsas and pingos.
Budantseva N.A., Belova N.G., Vasil'chuk A.C., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen in Holocene ice wedges on the western coast of Baydarata Bay, at the mouth of the Ngarka-Tambyakha River pp. 76-85


Abstract: The object of this study is the ice wedges of Holocene age on the western coast of the Baydarata Bay, at the mouth of the Ngarka-Tambyakha River. In the coastal cliff structure of the thin polygonal peatland have been studied. The peatland is located in the upper part of the terrace 8-17 m high. The peat is underlain by gray icy loam with layered-lenticular cryogenic structure. Ice wedges revealed at the depth 0.8 m. Their width was 1.5-2 m, and outcropped height about 1.15 m high. One representative ice wedge was sampled across horizontal axis in the upper part, 9 samples were analyzed on a mass spectrometer, the oxygen isotope and hydrogen isotope composition of ice wedges was obtained. The main conclusions are: harsh winter air temperature in the area in Holocene varied between –16 and –19° С, which is about 10°С warmer compared to Late Pleistocene and were close to modern ones. Obtained results complement sparse information on Holocene winter air temperature for the Baydarata Bay coast.
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Yedomas in Alaska and Klondike with well-defined cyclic qualities pp. 80-111


Abstract: The object of this research is the yedomas in Alaska and Klondike with the well-defined cyclic qualities. The author examines the mesocyclic polygonal-lode complex McLeod Point, mesocyclic polygonal-lode complex  on the Itkillik River, mesocyclic polygonal-lode complex in Chatanika, mesocyclic polygonal-lode complex  in the Last Chance Creek valley, mesocyclic polygonal-lode complex in the Fox permafrost tunnel, mesocyclites in the Seward Peninsula, Colville River valley, the northern slope of Alaska, and Klondike near Dawson City. The main research method contains the analysis of cryolithological structure, radiocarbon dating, oxygen-isotope and hydrogen-isotope data. The main result of the conducted research lies in identification of mesocyclites in the Alaska and Klondike yedomas, such as: a) there are three vertical growth mesocyclitic stages in the MacLeod Point yedoma; b) four vertical growth mesocyclitic stages are common in the Chatanika yedoma; c) at least four vertical growth mesocyclitic stages are identified in the Itkillik yedoma; d) at least four vertical growth mesocyclitic stages are revealed in the Fox permafrost yedoma; e) at least four vertical growth mesocyclitic stages are tiers are distinguished in the Last Chance Creek valley; f) large, two or more layered syngenetic lodes are detected in the Seward Peninsula, Colville River valley , and the northern slope of Alaska yedomas – two-layered lodes; g) Klondike yedoma, near the Dawson City, is characterized with powerful two-three layered syngenetic lodes.
Vasil'chuk A.C. - Palynospectra and chronology of Holocene polygonal wedge ices of Yamal Peninsula pp. 84-109


Abstract: Holocene wedge ices are widespread within laidas, peat bogs and flood plains of lakes and rivers of the Yamal Peninsula. The aim of the paper is to study palynological characteristic of exposures of wedge ices located at different geomorphological levels. The author estimates realibility of radiocarbon dating of polygonal wedge ices of the base of palynological characteristic and considers the possibility of estimating the idiogenousness of wedge ices on the basis of comparison of palinospectra of wedge ices and their deposits. The author detects several stages of vegetation evolution in this region. The main approach to ice wedge complex study is based on the fact that palynospectra of ices and deposits represent different seasons of pollen accumulation. While subfossil palynospectrum is accumulated during the whole vegetation season and consisits both of local and regional peculiarities of land cover, palinospectra of wedge ices are formed of spring pollen rains and reflect mainly regional characteristics. Reliability of the radiocarbon dating is estimated according to the constitution of Pre-Quaternary pollen in the sample, because it indicates the constitution of aicient penecontemporaneous organic material in the sample indirectly. Main stages of vegetation cover development in Holocene are distinguished on the base of these studies.
Averkina T.I., Andreeva T.V., Balykova S.D. - Composition, structure and characteristics of permafrost sands in the territory of Eastern Siberia pp. 84-94


Abstract: The object of this research is the permafrost sandy soils of Eastern Siberia. Their age range spans from the Mesozoic through the Holocene. The pre-quaternary permafrost sands are developed within the limits Vilyuy syneclise and Khatanga trough, and fall into the epicryogenic category. The quaternary sands are composed of aqueoglacial, glaciolacustrine, marine alluvial-marine, eolian, lacustrine-alluvial and alluvial genetic units. In the northern districts, the syncryogenic soils usually compose the upper part of the cutoffs of these units, while underlying the epicryogenic soils. In central and southern districts, the epicryogenic sands are often embedded on the surface. The study of archive and published materials allowed revealing and generalizing the peculiarities of composition, structure and characteristics of permafrost sands of the platform and mountain territories of Eastern Siberia. It is noted that their granulometric composition extensively varies – from gravelly to silty types. The higher is the sand dispersion, the higher is their natural moisture and porosity factor, and the lower is the density of soil and soil skeleton. The fine and silty sandy soils often have a schlieren cryogenic structure, significantly settle during thawing and frequently develop into the running sands. The larger sands have a predominantly massive cryogenic structure, and settle insignificantly during thawing.
Vasil'chuk A.C. - Pollen spectra of massive ice in the Erkutayakha River valley, Yamal Peninsula pp. 86-96


Abstract:  The object of this research is the most southern massive ice in the Yamal Peninsula, located on the left bank of the Erkutayakha River (68°11ʹ18ʺ N, 68°51ʹ39ʺ E). A dislocated ice massif occurred in the 15-18 m exposure of the sandy layer. Its total length is about 100 m. The ice massif is composed of different types of ice. There are four types of ice: 1) pure matte white ice with a large number of gas xenogenic inclusions; 2) crystal clear ice, sometimes with soil inclusions; 3) gray ice with a steel tint, layered parallel to the slope of the upper surface of the massive ice; 4) gray block-ice, lies in the form of tiles. Each type of the ice was examined, and 10 samples of ice from different parts of the outcrops and of ice of different types have been selected for pollen study. The results of this study allowed more adequately evaluating the origin of the ice. 
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Budantseva N.A. - Stable oxygen isotopes in the new exposures of Yedoma and Holocene sediments nearby Chersky settlement of the lower reach of Kolyma River pp. 95-106


Abstract: The subject of this research is the Late Pleistocene and Holocene massive ice wedges discovered in the exposures of Yedoma formation nearby Chersky settlement and a small Holocene exposure on the lakeshore explored close to the scientific station on the edge of Chersky. Relatively small fragments of the Late Pleistocene ice wedges, which are up to 1.5 m wide and up to 2 m high, were found in the Yedoma formation. The massive ice wedges in these two exposures were tested for clarification of paleoclimatic conditions of their development. The main research methods contain the field study of massive ice wedges and enclosing sediments, their testing and analysis of the oxygen isotope composition of the ice wedges. The measurement of oxygen isotope composition are conducted in the regime of the constant flow of helium (CF-IRMS) on the Delta-V mass spectrometer using the gas-bench complex. The scientific novelty lies in examination of the new previously undescribed exposure of the Late Pleistocene ice wedges in Chersky settlement, as well as a small Holocene wedge on the edge of the settlement. The value of δ18О in the Late Pleistocene ice wedges vary from –32.24 to –31.45‰, while in the Holocene ice wedge from –27.94 to –26.37‰.
Vasil'chuk A.C., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Pollen the age sediments and ice wedges in the Gyda River mouth pp. 97-121


Abstract: The outcrop of 7-m terrace in the mouth of Gyda River (70°53ʹ41ʺ N. 78°30ʹ14ʺ E) is the object of the study. There are two generations of ice wedges and four stages of ice lens occurred in peaty sand. Syngenetic ice wedges are in paragenesis with massive ice. Considerable reworking of organic material is proved. Seven cycles of vegetation changes corresponded to local pollen zones. Their duration is about 0.5-2 ka. Sediments accumulated at alternation of subaerial and subaueous stages in 3-13 ka BP.Ice wdges accumulated at the end of the Late Pleistocene in 11-12 ka BP and in the Holocenein 3-4 ka BP. The total annual thawing index variated from 200 to 800 oC x day
Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Geochemical composition of ground ice of the Russian Arctic pp. 99-115


Abstract: The paper studies the composition of water-soluble salts of ice wedges and massive ice of different regions of the Russian Arctic: Western Siberia, central and northern Yakutia, Chukotka. The research methodology is based on the fact, that the chemical composition of ground ice reflects the hydrochemical conditions of the period of ice formation or freezing and can serve as an important criterion for the reconstruction of a paleo-facial component in paleo-geocryological elaborations. To compare the ice of different regions, the author develops a hydro-chemical classification (systematization) of ground ice: ultra-fresh ice with mineralization less than 50 mg / l, fresh ice - 50-200 mg / l, desalted - 200-400 mg / l, light-salted - 400-1000 mg / l, mesohaline - 1000-5000 mg / l, highly saline - 5000 mg / l and more. The author finds out that ice mineralization is less than 0.05 g / l in more than a half of samples from the ice wedges in Chukotka, while the ice samples with the same mineralization reach only 16% of cases in Western Siberia and 14% of cases in Northern Yakutia. However, if we take a broader range – (mineralization less than 0.15 g / l), then the closest resemblance is observed. This range includes almost 100% of the analyzed samples in Chukotka, 89% in Western Siberia and 80% in Northern Yakutia. These findings suggest that though there are regional differences between the composition of salts in permafrost sediments of different Arctic regions of Eurasia (caused primarily by the uneven nature of air masses transport in wintertime and the different influence of seas and oceans), their similarity is much more significant. This manifests itself in low mineralization and dominance of hydrocarbons, indicating, most likely, the atmospheric nature of water that had fed ice wedges in the Late Pleistocene, in the Holocene and the present time. Certain findings of high-salt ice wedges in rare cases indicate the possibility of sea, lagoon and bog waters participation in the ice wedges formation in the Late Pleistocene and Holocene in the shallow water conditions. In the coastal areas high mineralization indicates the involvement of dead and salt-affected waters of seasonally thawed layer. Data on the hydrochemical composition of massive ice are often decisive for determining the genesis of ice layer. It had resulted in increase of salinity downward the massive ice section Ledyanaya Gora (Ice Mountain) in the Yenisei River valley, indicating the intra-ground origin of the ice. The lower horizons of massive ice in the New Siberian Archipelago formed syngenetically by the injection. Strongly mineralized (4700 mg / l) massive ice formed at epigenetic freezing process found in wells at great depths in the northern Urals and Pai-Khoi.
Chizhova J.N., Vasil'chuk Y.K. - Deuterium excess in the snow and glaciers of the Polar Ural and massive ice of the south of the Yamal Peninsula and the coast of Baydaratskaya Bay pp. 100-111


Abstract: The subject of the study is the distribution of oxygen and hydrogen stable isotopes and the variations of the deuterium excess in snow and glaciers of the Polar Urals and massive ice of the south of the Yamal Peninsula and the coast of Baydaratskaya Bay. The isotope composition of winter snow and ice of the glacier No. 1, and the glacier of the Romantics was studied in the Polar Urals. On the south of the Yamal Peninsula, the isotopic characteristics of the massive ice in the valley of the Erkutayakha River, Oyuyakha River and at the mouth of the Sabettayakha River were analyzed. The massive ice of the autochthonous type should differ significantly in the isotopic composition of the ice from the buried ice. Isotopic characteristics of massive ice are a good tool for studying the conditions of the ice formation, which is due to the processes of isotope fractionation of oxygen and hydrogen during phase transitions, while the fractionation factor of vapor-water and water-ice transitions are determined by temperature. Variations of stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen in massive ice and the δ2H -d-excess ratio are used as a diagnostic tool to determine the type of ice formation. In winter snow of the Polar Urals higher values of isotope composition is recorded with depth increase, reflecting the seasonality of snow accumulation. Very high values of the deuterium excess are recorded - from 14.3 to 19 ‰, the average value was 16.9 ‰. Values of the deuterium excess are distributed in antiphase with the distribution of heavy oxygen and hydrogen with depth. The values of δ18О in the ice of the glacier №1 range from -12.6 ‰ to -16.03 ‰, δ2H - from -96.7 ‰ to -115.1 ‰. The values of the deuterium excess in the ice of the glacier No. 1 are rather low, averaging 6-7 ‰, the highest value of d-excess is 13.1 ‰ the minimum value of d-excess = 4.7 ‰. For glacier ice No. 1, a negative slope δ2H-d-excess is noted, indicating congelation ice formation in a closed system (i.e., a limited volume of water). This can occur when a certain volume of thawed water in pores of the firn, when the firn mass, saturated with thawed water, turns into ice. The Romantik Glacier occupies in δ2H-d-excess ratio an intermediate position between the atmospheric precipitation (snow cover) and the ice of the glacier No. 1.Variations of stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen in the massive ice on the Erkutayaha River in the southern part of the Yamal Peninsula are significant, and the δ2H-d-excess ratio is an evidence of mostly intra-soil injection ice formation, i.e. freezing of a limited volume of free water. The δ2H-d-excess ratios for massive ice at the mouth of the Oyuyakha River at the coast of Baydaratskaya Bay evidences that a powerful ice body could have been formed when a large volume of water was frozen in a closed system, as can be seen from the trend of decreasing of δ18O values down from the top. The non-explicit expression of the negative correlation of δ2H to d-excess may be due to the fact that the source of moisture was the surface water evaporated, or was characterized by less isotope fractionation than the theoretical one. The values of d-excess in ice are from 8.4 to -2.3 ‰ and indicate rather the intra-soil formation of ice. Variation of the δ2H-d-excess ratio in ice formation is an additional tool for diagnostic studies of massive ice genesis and types of ice formation.
Vasil'chuk Y.K., Shmelev D.G., Budantseva N.A., Cherbunina M.Y., Brouchkov A.V., Vasil'chuk A.C., Ch - Oxygen and hydrogen isotope composition of the Mamontova Gora and Syrdakh syngenetic ice wedges and reconstruction of the Late Pleistocene winter palaeotemperatures in Central Yakutia pp. 112-135


Abstract: The subject of the study is the Late Pleistocene and Holocene syngenetic ice wedges of the Mamontova Gora and Syrdakh outcrops and the reconstruction of winter temperatures of ice wedge formation periods. The main study objects are ice wedges over 7 m high in the upper part of the 50-60-meter heigh terrace of the Mamontova Gora, the ice wedges are surrounded by the 9-12 m thick lacustrine loamy sediments. The Holocene and modern ice wedges on the high flood plain of the Aldan River are also studied. In the thermoerosine ravine near Lake Syrdakh the Late Pleistocene ice wedges were also studied. The main research methods are the mass-spectrometry analysis of the oxygen and hydrogen isotope composition of the Late Pleistocene, Holocene and modern ice wedges. Also a direct dating of microinnclusions of organics material from ice wedges by the AMS method in the Mamontova Gora was performed. New radiocarbon dates of organic matter from sediments surrounding and overlying of ice wedges has been obtained. Using the known ratios of mean winter and mean January temperatures with isotopic composition of ice wedges, the winter palaeotemperatures of Central Yakutia were reconstructed for key periods of the Late Pleistocene. The main conclusions of the study are: a) the mean winter air temperature during the majority of the period of formation of the Late Pleistocene ice wedges of the Mamontova Gora was in the range from -28 to -31 °C, the average January temperatures reached -42, -46 °C; b) in the Syrdach Lake region the winter conditions were slightly more severe: the mean winter temperature varied mainly from -30 to -32 ° C, the average January temperatures reached -44, -48 °C; c) in the Holocene, the average winter temperatures were higher: from -24 to -28 °C, and the mean January temperatures from -36 to -42 °C.
Budantseva N.A., Chizhova J.N., Vasil'chuk Y. - The reflection of mound landscapes development phases of Bolshezemelskaya tundra in the peat isotope composition pp. 124-138


Abstract: The research subject is the peat permafrost mounds on the northeast of Bolshezemelskaya tundra. The authors study the permafrost mounds at different stages of development – from the adolescent and growing to the mature and broken. The mature permafrost mounds are from 3 to 4,7 m high; some of them have the signs of primary breaking in the form of stains of bare peat or cavities on the surface. The height of adolescent permafrost mounds usually doesn’t exceed 1,5 – 2 m; the broken mounds look like peat mounds, surrounding the lows. The width of peat, superposing the mounds, varies from 0,8 to 1,2 m on mature mounds to 0,3-0,6 m on broken mounds. The authors sample the peat on mounds and lows (at 5-10 cm intervals); establish the radiocarbon age, the composition of carbon and nitrogen and the isotope composition of peat carbon. Radiocarbon dating shows that the studied mounds had formed in the period of Holocene optimum; the highest mounds formed about 7,7 – 4,8 thousand years ago. The authors show that within the limits of the studied mound landscapes in Holocene, the conditions of water intrusion, the composition of vegetative cover and the temperature of vegetation periods continually changed. Peat accumulated in the conditions of high water intrusion; the permafrost condition of peat had determined its low decaying and humification. Both in the period of Holocene optimum and at the present time, permafrost mounds develop cyclically, that is determined by both climate changes (air temperature and the snowiness of winters) and local factors, including the change of masses humidity. 
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