• Safety Data Management: Gathering and Using the Data

      Perkins, Robert A; Bennett, F. Lawrence (2016-07-14)
      How are roadway crash data acquired, stored, and utilized in engineering and management decisions regarding highway projects? This research answers that question by interviewing the engineers and professionals involved with that safety data management from six states and asking – How are safety (crash) data acquired and used in their states. Since most safety projects are funded by the federal FHWA, through the HSIP, the general flow of the safety data is similar in the states interviewed. But there are many differences in details, especially the computer hardware and software. The methods of data movement between the responder and the DOT often involve an intermediate agency, often the DMV – this varies between the states. Likewise, the program to extract these data for the DOT varies. Another pronounced difference is the transfer of HSIP funding to local agencies. Also pronounced is the use of historical crash data in the SPFs. The older method of only looking at the crash data from the location in question is not uncommon, while the more modern method of using data from similar locations via an EB analysis is becoming more common and is the currently recommended method. Most analysis software is geared to the EB analysis. Historical crash data, before and after countermeasures are installed, may be used to evaluate SPF and CMF for particular states and localities, but there are practical problems with this application of crash data, due to the time required to acquire adequate data for comparisons.
    • Sagavanirktok River Particle Size Distributions

      Tape, Ken; Clark, Jason; Toniolo, Horacio (2017-10)
    • Sagavanirktok River Spring Breakup Observations 2015

      Toniolo, H.; Youcha, E.K.; Gieck, R.E.; Tschetter, T.; Engram, M.; Keech, J. (2015-12)
      Alaska’s economy is strongly tied to oil production, with most of the petroleum coming from the Prudhoe Bay oil fields. Deadhorse, the furthest north oil town on the Alaska North Slope, provides support to the oil industry. The Dalton Highway is the only road that connects Deadhorse with other cities in Interior Alaska. The road is heavily used to move supplies to and from the oil fields. In late March and early April 2015, the Dalton Highway near Deadhorse was affected by ice and winter overflow from the Sagavanirktok River, which caused the road’s closure two times, for a total of eleven days (four and seven days, respectively). In mid-May, the Sagavanirktok River at several reaches flooded the Dalton from approximately milepost (MP) 394 to 414 (Deadhorse). The magnitude of this event, the first recorded since the road was built in 1976, was such that the Dalton was closed for nearly three weeks. During that time, a water station and several pressure transducers were installed to track water level changes on the river. Discharge measurements were performed, and water samples were collected to estimate suspended sediment concentration. Water levels changed from approximately 1 m near MP414 to around 3 m at the East Bank station, located on the river’s east bank (about MP392). Discharge measurements ranged from nearly 400 to 1560 m3/s, with the maximum measurement roughly coinciding with the peak. Representative sediment sizes (D50) ranged from 10 to 14 microns. Suspended sediment concentrations ranged from a few mg/L (clear water in early flooding stages) to approximately 4500 mg/L. An analysis of cumulative runoff for two contiguous watersheds—the Putuligayuk and Kuparuk—indicates that 2014 was a record-breaking year in both watersheds. Additionally, an unseasonable spell of warm air temperatures was recorded during mid-February to early March. While specific conditions responsible for this unprecedented flood are difficult to pinpoint, runoff and the warm spell certainly contributed to the flood event.
    • Sagavanirktok River Spring Breakup Observations 2016

      Toniolo, H.; Tape, K.D.; Tschetter, T.; Homan, J.W.; Youcha, E.K.; Vas, D.; Gieck, R.E.; Keech, J.; Upton, G. (2016-12)
      In 2015, spring breakup on the Sagavanirktok River near Deadhorse was characterized by high flows that destroyed extensive sections of the Dalton Highway, closing the road for nearly 3 weeks. This unprecedented flood also damaged infrastructure that supports the trans-Alaska pipeline, though the pipeline itself was not damaged. The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (ADOT&PF) and the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company made emergency repairs to their respective infrastructure. In December 2015, aufeis accumulation was observed by ADOT&PF personnel. In January 2016, a research team with the University of Alaska Fairbanks began monitoring and researching the aufeis and local hydroclimatology. Project objectives included determining ice elevations, identifying possible water sources, establishing surface meteorological conditions prior to breakup, measuring hydrosedimentological conditions (discharge, water level, and suspended sediment concentration) during breakup, and reviewing historical imagery of the aufeis feature. Ice surface elevations were surveyed with Global Positioning System (GPS) techniques in late February and again in mid-April, and measureable volume changes were calculated. However, river ice thickness obtained from boreholes near Milepost 394 (MP394) in late February and mid-April revealed no significant changes. It appears that flood mitigation efforts by ADOT&PF in the area contributed to limited vertical growth in ice at the boreholes. End-of-winter snow surveys throughout the watershed indicate normal or below normal snow water equivalents (SWE 10 cm). An imagery analysis of the lower Sagavanirktok aufeis from late winter for the past 17 years shows the presence of ice historically at the MP393–MP396 area. Water levels and discharge were relatively low in 2016 compared with 2015. The mild breakup in 2016 seems to have been due to temperatures dropping below freezing after the flow began. Spring 2015 was characterized by warm temperatures throughout the basin during breakup, which produced the high flows that destroyed sections of the Dalton Highway. A comparison of water levels at the East Bank Station during 2015 and 2016 indicates that the 2015 maximum water level was approximately 1 m above the 2016 maximum water level. ii Maximum measured discharge in 2016 was approximately half of that measured in 2015 in the lower Sagavanirktok River. Representative suspended sediment sizes (D50) ranged from 20 to 50 microns (medium to coarse silt). An objective of this study was to determine the composition and possible sources of water in the aufeis at the lower Sagavanirktok River. During the winter months and prior to breakup in 2016, overflow water was collected, primarily near the location of the aufeis, but also at upriver locations. Simultaneously possible contributing water sources were sampled between January and July 2016, including snow, glacial meltwater, and river water. Geochemical analyses were performed on all samples. It was found that the overflow water which forms the lower Sagavanirktok aufeis is most similar (R2 = 0.997) to the water that forms the aufeis at the Sagavanirktok River headwaters (Ivishak River), thought to be fed by relatively consistent groundwater sources.
    • Saline Conversion and Ice Structures from Artificially Grown Sea Ice

      Peyton, H. R.; Johnson, P. R.; Behlke, C. E. (University of Alaska, Arctic Environmental Engineering Laboratory and University of Alaska, Institute of Water Resources, 1967-09)
      The environment of cold regions is generally viewed as inhospitable, primarily due to application of ideal processes and techniques suitable to temperate zones. The work herein is a step toward solving two environmental problems. The first involves the supply of inexpensive, potable water in Arctic regions, the lack of which is a severe detriment to development. Although water does exist in the Arctic, it is neither available in potable form during many months of the year nor does it occur in sufficient quantity near the point of use. Principally, this lack is caused by the aridness of the Arctic and the shallowness of fresh water sources which, for all practical purposes, do not exist but freeze completely each winter season. The remaining liquid water source is the sea. Arctic problems are then similar to other arid regions where the conversion of sea water to potable water or the transmission of potable water to desired locations is necessary. Cold temperatures generally preclude transmission except over very short distances. Desalination by freezing sea water is a much reported process and has been included among the desalination processes under study worldwide. The advantage of this method in the Arctic is the cold winter-time temperature for freezing and the existence of adequate solar energy in the summer for melting self purified ice. Power requirements are greatly reduced using these natural phenomena. The second aspect of this study concerns the use of artificially grown sea ice as a structural material, thinking primarily in terms of coastal facilities such as docks, jetties, islands, platforms, etc. At sufficiently high latitudes, the summer ablation can be controlled to the point where major structures can be maintained intact during the summer. The unit cost of material is quite low because of low energy requirements. The results of this study show that each of these sea water uses have considerable promise. Desalination to potable level was accomplished. Ice growth rates were obtained which indicate that ice structures of substantial size can be built.
    • Scaling laws in cold heavy oil production with sand reservoirs

      Robertson, Keith W. III; Awoleke, Obadare; Peterson, Rorik; Ahmadi, Mohabbat; Liu, Jenny (2018-08)
      This thesis presents a rigorous step by step procedure for deriving the minimum set of scaling laws for Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand (CHOPS) reservoirs based on a given set of physical equations using inspectional analysis. The resulting dimensionless equations are then simulated in COMSOL Mutiphysics to validate the dimensionless groups and determine which groups are more significant by performing a sensitivity analysis using a factorial design. The work starts simple by demonstrating how the above process is done for 1D single-phase flow and then slowly ramps up the complexity to account for foamy oil and then finally for wormholes by using a sand failure criterion. The end result is three dimensionless partial differential equations to be solved simultaneously using a finite element simulator. The significance of these groups is that they can be used to extrapolate between a small scale model and a large scale prototype.
    • Scintillation at K-band and Ka-band frequencies

      Kim, Táe-hong (2000-05)
      The need for higher bandwidth and smaller antenna size for satellite communications led NASA to fund the Advanced Communications Technology Satellite (ACTS) and propagation research for K-band and Ka-band frequencies. From December 1993 to December 1998, seven sites in North America have collected and processed power measurements at 20.2 and 27.5 gigahertz from ACTS, a geostationary statellite located at 100 ̊West longitude. The thesis compares scintillation measurements to eight scintillation prediction models, proposes a cumulative distribution model to help predict the percentage of time scintillation exceeds a given threshold, examines the effects of frequency on scintillation magnitudes, and proposes a climate model based on moisture content to help predict scintillation magnitudes. The study concludes that the scintillation prediction models are dependent on the climate, the frequency dependence is a function of climate, and the moisture content in the atmosphere dictates the percentage of time large scintillation occurs.
    • Seasonal Effects Of Frozen Soil On The Stiffness Of Bridge Piles

      Horazdovsky, Jacob E.; Hulsey, J. Leroy (2010)
      In the northern regions, the upper layer of soil is frozen throughout winter months. Soil stiffness can be expected to increase several orders of magnitude as it changes from thawed to frozen. Thus, pile foundation systems embedded in frozen soils are considerably stiffer during winter months when subjected to lateral loads. This thesis explores and quantifies stiffness change for 16 inch diameter steel jacketed, reinforced concrete pilings in seasonally frozen silt. Two test piles were driven 20 feet into silty soil at a site approximately 1.5 miles from Fairbanks, Alaska. Three quasi-static lateral load cyclic tests were conducted on the piles throughout the year; one in September when the soil was thawed, the other two in January and March with frost depths of 4.5 and 7.5 feet respectively. Soil temperatures ranged from thawed to -18 degrees C. The shear demand on the piles increased by over 400 percent. Depth to fixity changed from approximately 6 pile diameters (thawed) to less then 0.75 pile diameters (frozen).
    • Seasonally Frozen Soil Effects on the Seismic Performance of Highway Bridges

      Hulsey, J. Leroy; Horzdovsky, Jacob E.; Davis, Duane; Yang, Zhaohui Joey; Li, Qiang (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2011)
    • Second annual conference on Alaskan placer mining, focus on gold

      Campbell, B.W.; Finch, Louella (University of Alaska Mineral Industry Research Laboratory, 1980)
    • Sediment Relations of Selected Alaskan Glacier-fed Streams: Completion Report

      Guymon, G. L. (University of Alaska, Institute of Water Resources, 1974-06)
    • Seismic Design of Deep Bridge Pier Foundations in Seasonally Frozen Ground

      Shelman, Aaron; Levings, Jared; Sritharan, Sri (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2010)
    • Seismic Performance and Design of Bridge Foundations in Liquefiable Ground with a Frozen Crust

      Yang, Zhaohui “Joey”; Zhang, Xiaoyu (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2012)
    • Seismic performance of Alaskan structures

      Cherlopalle, Dileep; Hulsey, J. Leroy; Carlson, Robert; Shur, Yuri (2004-08)
      Alaska is the most earthquake prone area in the United States. On October 23, 2002 a 6.7 magnitude earthquake occurred in interior Alaska. This was followed by a magnitude 7.9 earthquake that occurred near Denali on November 3, 2002. The Denali earthquake was the largest inland earthquake in North America in almost 150 years. Only minimal structural damage was reported. Subsequently, structural engineers should question why minimal damage. As a part of an investigation to evaluate this unusual phenomenon, two structures were selected for seismic analysis, a building and a bridge. The building is at Alyeska Pump Station # 10 (3 miles from the epicenter) and only non-structural damage occurred. A 3 span truss bridge near Tok, Alaska was selected as the second. This structure experienced only minimal damage. Seismic analysis was performed on these two structures for horizontal excitations. A corrected seismic data from Pump Station # 10 was used as the earthquake excitation record. The maximums for displacements, member forces and member stresses were studied. The results show that no structural damage should have occurred for the building and minimal damage for the bridge. These findings compare favorably with field inspection results reported by others.
    • Seismic Performance of Reinforced Concrete Filled Steel Tubes in Soil

      Aguirre-Realpe, Diego A.; Kowalsky, Mervyn J.; Nau, James M.; Gabr, Mohammed (Alaska University Transportation Center, 2016-12)
      Reinforced concrete filled steel tube pile-columns are structural elements commonly used in bridge supports in high seismic regions because RCFSTs provide increased levels of strength, ductility, and energy dissipation as compared with traditional systems such as reinforced concrete (RC) or steel substructures. This study includes experimental and analytical studies that considered three main parameters: the diameter-to-thickness (D/t) ratio, the above-ground length (La), and the soil stiffness.
    • Seismic Performance of Steel Pipe Pile to Cap Beam Moment Resisting Connections

      Fulmer, Steven J.; Kowalsky, Mervyn J.; Nau, James M. (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2013)
    • Selection of Preservatives for Marine Structural Timbers in Herring Spawning Areas

      Perkins, Robert A. (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2012)
    • A sensitivity analysis of a biological module discovery pipeline

      Long, James; Roth, Mitchell; Rhodes, John; Marr, Thomas; Hartman, Chris (2015-05)
      Gene expression is the term applied to the combination of transcription, the process of copying information stored in DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) into a transcript, and translation, the process of reading a transcript in order to manufacture a cellular product. Cellular products are typically proteins, which can combine either structurally or in concert to accomplish one or more tasks. Cooperating protein combinations are called modules, and it is thought that groups of transcripts with high correlation between their respective concentrations may indicate such modules. An open-source version of the CODENSE algorithm was developed with improved correlation methods to computationally test this hypothesis on an artificial transcription network containing a known module motif. The artificial network was used as input to a biochemical simulator in order to obtain synthetic transcription data, which was then fed to the pipeline whose purpose it is to discover modules in such data. Any discovered modules are compared to the known modules in the original network during a sensitivity analysis, where the process is repeated thousands of times with slightly varied parameters for each run. This process quantifies the sensitivity of pipeline output to each parameter of the pipeline, the most sensitive of which suggest what parts of the pipeline may be candidates for further refinement. The sensitivity analysis was then extended to include variation of biological network parameters, and noisy data. Lessons learned were then extended to the case of two known modules.
    • Separation of oil from oil water emulsion by the use of alginate gel encapsulated iron oxide and graphene oxide nanoparticles

      Ket, Nikhil; Aggarwal, Srijan; Patil, Shirish; Zhang, Lei (2017-05)
      Crude oil is used extensively around the world as a source of energy and as a means of producing various petroleum products. However, apart from being an excellent energy source, crude oil can also be a major pollutant in the form of oil spills. Crude oil spills can occur on land and in the ocean during the drilling, production, transportation or storage stages. While it is possible to reduce the damage caused to the environment by an oil spill, it is almost impossible to completely remove the adverse effects. New techniques need to be developed to clean-up oil spills at higher rates and with increased efficiency. The use of nanoparticles (NPs) for oil spill clean-up has gained popularity in recent years. This research focuses on the use of alginate gel as an immobilizing agent for nanoparticles that are then used for the removal of heating oil from an oil-water mixture. Iron Oxide and Graphene Oxide Nanoparticles were immobilized using sodium alginate in calcium chloride. The concentration of the nanoparticles was varied from 1 g/L to 5 g/L. The immobilized nanoparticles were then added to an oil-water mixture which was prepared by spiking heating oil in methanol and adding the solution to deionized water to achieve uniform distribution. 10 mL samples containing residual oil were extracted from the heating oil and water mixture at regular intervals and were analyzed for the residual oil. Measurements were carried out for residual hydrocarbons using Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectroscopy (GC/MS), Fluorescence Spectroscopy and Ultraviolet--visible spectroscopy (UV-Vis). Results from GC/MS show the highest percentage of oil being removed from the mixture by 2 g/L iron oxide (77%) and 2 g/L graphene oxide (81%) NPs. Analysis for residual hydrocarbons based on the time of contact showed promising results, with 75% of oil removed in 70 minutes. Further, based on the data obtained it was observed that the nanoparticles reached saturation after 70 minutes and were unable to remove additional quantities of oil from the mixture. Changing the nanoparticles from Iron Oxide to Graphene Oxide increased the amount of oil removed by 4%. This research will assist future development of oil spill clean-up and water treatment techniques that make use of nanoparticles as sorbents.
    • Serving Future Transportation Needs: Succession Planning for a State Department of Transportation Organization, Its People & Mission

      Perkins, Robert A. (Alaska University Transportation Center, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, 2011)