• Rabies on the Last Frontier: A Phylogeographical Look at Red (Vulpus vulpus) and Arctic (Vulpus lagopus) Fox with Respect to Mitochondrial DNA and the Spatial Diffusion of Rabies

      Clement, Christopher J. (2012)
      Vulpus vulpus and Vulpus lagopus are terrestrial animals that live in Alaska. They are also common carriers of the rabies virus. It has been determined that there are three different clades of rabies in Alaska being vectored by these two species of fox, but it is not clear why there are no endemic rabies in the Interior. We are interested in the migration patterns of Vulpus vulpus and Vulpus lagopus, the spread and maintenance of the rabies virus as a function of climate warming. We hypothesize that there is some element, whether biological or geographical, that restricts the virus from spreading into the interior and maintaining itself as much as it does in the coastal regions of Alaska. This research provides a model for determining how the virus spreads under retreating Arctic conditions, as the globe warms.
    • Remote Sensing Risk Assessment of Valdez Glacier Lake

      Soederstroem, Erik (2012)
      Can remote sensing techniques be used to determine the probability of an outburst from the Valdez Glacier Lake, and to detect downstream areas affected by a possible glacier lake outburst flood?
    • Research Gateway Management System for ARSC Projects

      Castro, Vincent (2012)
      The Research Gateway Management System (RGMS) is an account management system written in Python1 geared towards creating and facilitating user authentication and management for Arctic Region Supercomputer Center (ARSC) users on the ARSC systems. The intent of the RGMS is to forge an easy to use interface for clients to manage project information and for system administrators to manage projects and users. Utilizing this account management system will catalyze a transition towards the simplification of user and project requests and creation procedures as well as streamline user access to ARSC systems.
    • Reversibility of Arctic Sea Ice Retreat - A Multi-Scale Modeling Approach

      Mueller-Stoffels, M. (2012)
      Arctic summer sea ice has been retreating rapidly over past decade. Climate model projections show further retreat under typical forcing scenarios. The mode of the retreat is a matter of debate. Low-order models show reversible and irreversible retreat depending on the shape of the albedo parametrization. Climate models do not show irreversible sea ice losses, but generally underestimate the current trend of retreat.
    • Rock debris on glaciers: a mechanism for reducing glacier sensitivity to climate change

      Herreid, Samuel (2012)
      Rock debris covering a glacier surface affects the local melt rate by regulating the amount of solar energy available for melting. Supraglacial debris with a thickness of about 2 cm or more insulates the ice, thereby reducing the heat flux. This reduction of melt rate allows heavily debris-covered glaciers to extend further down-valley than meteorological variables alone would suggest. Here we present a regional study of supraglacial debris cover in the Delta Mountains, a sub-range of the Alaska Range. Using remote sensing and in situ measurements we consider the following questions: -How does glacier and debris-covered area change from 1986 to 2010? -Can we estimate debris thickness remotely? -How does debris affect melt? -Will ice melt cease below two meters of debris? -Is there a correlation between geologic setting and debris cover?
    • Rockwell Kent’s Villagers and Village Children The Importance of Provenance in Art

      Guffey, Lisa (2012)
      The provenance of the Rockwell Kent paintings, Villagers and Village Children, currently housed at the Noel Wien Library in Fairbanks, Alaska, is under question. Scott Ferris, a specialist on Kent, visited the Library’s Kent Collection in 1993, and relayed notes on Kent’s works. Ferris believes they may be from the 1930’s, when Kent traveled to Greenland, rather than 1947 (Villagers) and 1962 (Village Children). Jake Wien, an independent curator and author on Kent, believes the dates on the paintings to be correct. By researching these paintings, I will show how the provenance can effect the historical value, as well as the financial value in works of art.
    • Rural Telemedicine in Alaska: A Look at Healthcare Through Telecommunications

      Stephens, Ethan (2012)
      •An average town in the United States will have a basic medical facility capable of treating its patients. If not, there is roadway access to a capable facility. •In Rural Alaska however, there is no way to drive to the nearest hospital. These communities are not connected to the major road system and the only way to reach a hospital is by air transport. •Although many villages have access to hub communities that maintain a clinic, the clinic may not have the capabilities to treat certain ailments and many villages have no access to a medical facility. •Providing adequate medical care for Rural Alaskans is difficult due particularly to the size of Alaska, the geographic isolation of many villages, and to the cost of transportation to these rural areas. •The most serious healthcare issues that have been seen in Rural Alaska are “too few physicians or services and [health] care is too expensive,” (Hagopian et al, 2000). •In hopes of overcoming these obstacles in rural medicine, many organizations initiated telemedicine and telehealth programs.
    • Shallow-water residency and limited dispersal of Atlantic halibut in the Gulf of Maine

      Evans, Mark D. (2012)
      • Atlantic halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus), once abundant in the Gulf of Maine (GOM) on the northeast coast, were overfished until the stock collapsed in the 1940s. • In 2007, a three-year tagging study using electronic tags was done by the Maine Dept. of Marine Resources. • The objective of the study was to determine if GOM halibut migrate to spawning grounds on the Scotian Shelf and mix with Canadian halibut stocks
    • Species Delineation of the Genus Claytonia in Alaska

      Jeffers, Stephany (2012)
      The genus Claytonia L. (Spring Beauty) is well recognized in Alaska for its attractive flowers. However, there is much confusion around the species delineation of Claytonia, and the number of species recognized in Alaska has ranged considerably. While phylogenetic studies using molecular data at the family level have found general agreement of subgeneric division in the genus, these studies did not resolve relationships among closely related species in Alaska. This project serves to offer further insight into the phylogeny of Alaskan members of this genus through more in-­‐depth sampling and testing the utility of additional molecular markers. Questions: Is morphological variation in Alaskan Claytonia accompanied by genetic differences? How are Alaskan species of Claytonia related?
    • The Study and Expression of Bharatanatyam Classical India Dance

      Lamb, Jessica (2012)
      Bharatanatyam is a classical Southern style of Indian dance originating from Tamil Nadu, and is now practiced all over the world. During my stay in India, I learned from Dr. Joshi, Nupur Bharatnattyam Nrityalaya. According to my teacher, this specific dance style is designed to accompany songs that honor and/or describe a God’s story. The dance can vary according to the song and its specific meaning or intent. In my Honors Capstone Project, I composed a fusion choreography using original Bharatnatyam movements performed to Eastern European Slavic Music (artist: Kitka). Every hand, eye, foot, and body movement has a meaning and was incorporated into this choreography. The choreography was then taught to the local dance troupe, Cold Fusion, and performed at Tundra Caravan’s showcase, featuring Suzanne DelVecchio. The performance of this choreography was well received and performed at many other local events. My Capstone Project helped lead the way for more Indian dance to be taught in Fairbanks, AK, as well as further expand my own knowledge.
    • Superoxide Dismutase Activity within Caribou Serum as an Indicator of Copper Status

      Pauling, Cassandra (2012)
      Copper concentrations measured in liver are the gold standard for evaluating the copper status of ruminants. For live ruminants, measuring copper status is problematic because serum copper concentrations fluctuate and are not consistently correlated to liver copper values. In an attempt to establish an accurate evaluation of copper status from serum in caribou, we examined the correlation between liver copper concentrations and superoxide dismutase (SOD), which uses the oxidation and reduction reactions of a bound copper ion in order to catalyze superoxide radicals. Our study focuses on SOD activity in the serum of 16 individual adult female caribou and compares that to known copper levels within the liver. Determining copper levels in ruminants has proven difficult and currently a true proxy to determine liver copper levels in a live animal is unknown.
    • Traditional Skin Preparation Methods

      Isaak, Joel (2012)
      I am an Alaskan Native artist who is trying to learn more about my culture and to pass the information on to others before it is lost. Alaska Native cultures have been working with animal skins for thousands of years. Very few people today possess the knowledge to work these materials. I am interested in the use of the material for home dwellings and clothing. I am researching different ways that animal skins are turned into leather, specifically moose and salmon skins. I conducted interviews with local elders. I investigated the contrasting chemical material process that modern industry uses to produce tanned skins. The research has culminated in an installation made out of moose hide and wood in the Regents Great Hall April 23-27, 2012. The space will provide the viewer with a life sized environment simulating a traditional skin dwelling. I took a traditional preparation method used for salmon skins and transformed them into pieces of contemporary native art.
    • Transient spatiotemporal chaos collapses into periodic and steady states in an electrically-coupled neural ring network

      Keplinger, Keegan (2012)
      Chaotic behavior in a spatially extended system is often referred to as spatiotemporal chaos. The trajectories of a system as it evolves through state space are described by irregular spatial and temporal patterns. In mathematical biology, spatiotemporal chaos has been demonstrated in chemotaxis models (Painter & Hillen, 2011) predator-prey models (Sherratt, J. & Fowler, A., 1995) and the Hogdkin-Huxley neural model (Wang, Lu, & Chen, 2006). Transient chaos is a special case of chaotic dynamics in which the system dynamics collapses without external perturbation. Rather, collapse is an intrinsic property of the system. Here, we diff usively couple many spiking neurons into a ring network and fi nd that the network dynamics can collapse on to two diff erent species of attractor: the limit cycle and the steady-state solution.
    • Trapping as a Wildlife Management Tool in Interior Alaska

      Lonewolf, Xavier (2012)
      In the present day the Alaska Department of Fish and Game utilizes furbearer trapping as an important Wildlife Management tool. Historically, people have depended on furbearer trapping for required nutrients provided, by meat and also fur for clothing, bedding and shelter. But, modern day advances have impacted the trapping society and resulted in decline of participates. As time persists will the Alaska Dep. of Fish and Game have to replace the benefits that the trapping community provides us? It is important to see what simple solutions could possible restore the downfall. One simple outlook is to understand who all is participating and why. More importantly, are the future generations participating? Because the future holds the key.
    • The Use of Consumer Electronics as a Medium for Music Composition

      Shannon, Dean (2012)
      The Nintendo Entertainment System produces sound through the Ricoh 2z03 microprocessor. This 8-bit processor is limited to creating two square-waves, a triangle-wave, and a noise track. While the 2a03 is limited, it is what gives the NES its distinctive and memorable sound.
    • Using GPS as a reference frame for SAR images applied to a post eruptive period for Okmok Volcano, Aleutian Islands, Alaska

      Miller, Summer A. (2012)
      While high spatial coverage makes InSAR a popular tool to study active volcanoes its use can possess challenges for certain environments. Volcanoes along Alaska's Aleutian chain are difficult targets for InSAR as their seasonal snow cover causes decorrelation close to the volcanic caldera, their exposed location in the North Pacific renders them prone to severe atmospheric phase artifacts, and their location on small islands prevents the selection of suitable reference points necessary for deformation analysis. Existing GPS networks define a known reference frame in which SAR is better understood. Okmok volcano is one of the most active volcanoes in the Aleutian Island Chain and shows significant non-linear deformation behavior as it progresses through its eruption cycles. A stack of L-band imagery acquired by the SAR sensor PALSAR on board the JAXA Advanced Land Observing Satellite produced a post eruption deformation time series between August 2008 and October 2010. This data along with a merged DEM comprised of AirSAR SRTM and Worldview-1 stereo pair data, and GPS data from 3 continuous and 3 post eruption campaign sites was used for this study. In this research, a comparison and combination of InSAR and GPS time-series data will be presented aimed at the following research goals: 1) What is the accuracy and precision of InSAR-derived deformation estimates in such challenging environments; 2) How accurate can the deformation of the InSAR reference point be estimated from a joint analysis of InSAR and GPS deformation signals; 3) How non-linear volcanic deformation can be constrained by the measurements of a local GPS network and support the identification of residual atmospheric signals in InSAR-derived deformation time series. Further research into the combination of GPS and InSAR applied to the nonlinear aspect of volcanic deformation can enhance geodetic modeling of the volcano and associated eruption processes.
    • Using hair as an Indicator of Mercury Exposure in Sled Dogs

      Klejka, Jessica (2012)
      • The Alaskan sled dog is a mixed breed that has traditionally been bred for endurance, speed and strength. This study included eight Alaskan sled dogs. • Sled dogs are found only in close connection with human populated (especially Arctic) areas and are a good example of a species that is subject to many of the same environmental factors as humans and Arctic wildlife. • One environmental factor of significant importance is mercury present in foods. Mercury is both a naturally occurring element and byproduct of human industries.
    • Using Multiple Regression Models to Understand the Influence of Geologic History, Topography, Island Size, Isolation and Dispersability on Plant Community Assemblage in the Western Aleutian Islands

      Garroutte, Monte Daniel (2012)
      Island groups are often subject to habitat filters and dissimilar dispersal sources, and as a result may reflect dissimilar plant assemblages between islands. Though the Aleutian Islands have likely acted as a route for plant dispersal across the North Pacific, many continental endemics have colonized the islands but have not dispersed over the chain as a whole (Talbot, 1994). Typically, North American endemic plant species represent an increasing proportion of the flora with closer proximity to the Alaskan mainland, while Asian endemics increase in proportion towards Kamchatka (Lindroth, 1961). Using plant species occurrence data across the Western Aleutian Islands, we may examine the impact of several barriers to dispersal and flora assemblage.