British Antarctic Survey
High Cross
Madingley Road
Cambridge CB3 0ET
UK

NATURAL ENVIRONMENT RESEARCH COUNCIL
ARCTIC RESEARCH STATION
NY-ÅLESUND
SVALBARD

Link: https://www.arctic.ac.uk/uk-arctic-research-station
Station Manager:
Nick Cox
TA/RA contacts:
Nicola Munro

Shortlist from Station Catalogue over facilities and science disciplines.

NERC_list

STATION NAME AND OWNER

The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), UK, has funded the NERC Arctic Research Station which is managed by the British Antarctic Survey.

LOCATION

Ny-Ålesund, 78°55’ N, 11°55’ E is situated on the southern shore of Kongsfjord on the west coast of Spitsbergen, the largest island in the Svalbard archipelago.

BIODIVERSITY AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT

Due to the influence of the North Atlantic Current, the climate on the west coast of Spitsbergen is milder than any other locations at that latitude. The southern side of Kongsfjord, on which Ny-Ålesund is situated, has 50 km2 of tundra and alluvial plain. Glaciers and sea confine a plant protection area at the head of the fjord. Numerous glaciers of various types occur in the area. Most bird species found in Svalbard are represented in the area with barnacle geese, eiders, auks, terns and kittiwakes nesting in large numbers. Land mammals include reindeer, fox and the occasionally polar bear. The local fjord is home to ringed, bearded and common seals, walrus and beluga.

HISTORY AND FACILITIES

The UK has maintained a research station at Ny-Ålesund continuously since 1972. The NERC Arctic Research Station opened in1991. The station comprises 440 m2 of laboratory, workshop, and storage space plus single bedrooms. Additional accommodation can be provided by Kings Bay Company. The station provides laboratory, field equipment, telephone, computer facilities (fast web link), VHF radios, satellite telephones, f rearms, and boats. Rental of snowmobiles for specific projects can be arranged.

GENERAL RESEARCH AND DATABASES

The location is particularly suitable for ecological research, glacial/ periglacial geomorphology, hydrology, and atmospheric chemistry.

HUMAN DIMENSION

In 1991, Ny-Ålesund and the surrounding environment were designated as an area solely for scientific research. There are now 14 research stations owned by 10 nations. The Kings Bay Company provides a service infrastructure including air and sea link, power, water, buildings, and a dining facility. During the summer months, June to September, the population in Ny Ålesund reaches 150 persons. During the winter months it decreases to c. 25 persons.

ACCESS

There are regular flights between Ny-Ålesund and Longyearbyen (30 minute flight) serviced by a 14 seat Dornier aircraft. Longyearbyen is served by scheduled flights from Norway. The northern shore and islands are easily accessible by boat.

TAKE A TOUR AROUND THE STATION


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Field Site information table pdf

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