With the presently observed trend of permafrost warming and degradation, the development and availability of effective tools to locate and map ice-rich soils and massive ground ice is of increasing importance. This paper presents a geophysical study of an area with polygonal landforms in order to test the applicability of DC electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) to identifying and mapping ice-wedge occurrences. The site is located in Central West Greenland, and the ice-wedges are found in a permafrozen peat soil with an active layer of about 30 cm. ERT and GPR measurements give a coherent interpretation of possible ice-wedge locations, and active layer probing show a tendency for larger thaw depth in the major trench systems consistent with a significant temperature (at 10 cm depth) increase in these trenches identified by thermal profiling. Three shallow boreholes were drilled during the campaign but did not encounter ice-wedges. As the final interpretation did not predict ice-wedge occurrence at the borehole locations, results not contradictive – but more data is needed for final validation.
Cold Regions Engineering 2012: Sustainable Infrastructure Development in a Changing Cold Environment, 2012, p. 634-643