Kenji Yoshikawa is an associate professor in the Water and Environmental Research Center (WERC), UAF; he is actively engaged in geophysical, geothermal, hydrologic and permafrost research throughout Alaska.
Yoshikawa has aggressively pursued the goals of the Permafrost outreach program and developed good working relationships between the involved science and education communities.
Journey to the Permafrost
Presented Feb. 5, 2008
Ice Wedge Formation
From "Tunnel Man" video
Permafrost Tunnel Tour
with Kenji Yoshikawa
Kenji Yoshikawa, Research Associate Professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, is shown during a tour of the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory's Permafrost Tunnel in Fox, Alaska. This specific clip shows Yoshikawa pointing out ice wedges from underground.
Excavated in perennially frozen silt and gravel adjacent to an area dredged during early placer gold mining, the 360-foot-long tunnel was constructed in several stages during the 1960s. CRREL engineers originally used the tunnel to evaluate methods for underground excavation in frozen soil. The main drift was bored with an Alkirk continuous-cycle miner modified to increase its effectiveness in permafrost.
Today this underground facility, which includes several work chambers, is an active underground laboratory that is available for a variety of research programs. To preserve the permafrost, the tunnel is chilled in the winter by natural convection, with cold air passing in through the entrance and out through a ventilation shaft at the rear of the tunnel. A refrigeration system cools the tunnel portal area in summer to compensate for seasonal warming.
For a virutal tour and more information about the Permafrost Tunnel, please visit the CRREL Permafrost Tunnel homepage.
Kenji Yoshikawa, Research Associate Professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, toured northwestern rural Alaska in early 2008 on a snow machine to dig boreholes in the frozen tundra. With the support of local schools, these borehole sites have become permafrost observatories. This video is a quick overview of the trip activities.
Yoshikawa is reviewing all ACMP permafrost lessons for scientific accuracy.
Patterned ground permafrost photo by Anthonares, via wikimedia. All other images are still shots from the videos; see credits page for details.