WorldWideScience

Sample records for high alpine regions

  1. Analysis of a high-resolution regional climate simulation for Alpine temperature. Validation and influence of the NAO

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Proemmel, K. [GKSS-Forschungszentrum Geesthacht GmbH (Germany). Inst. fuer Kuestenforschung

    2008-11-06

    To determine whether the increase in resolution of climate models improves the representation of climate is a crucial topic in regional climate modelling. An improvement over coarser-scale models is expected especially in areas with complex orography or along coastlines. However, some studies have shown no clear added value for regional climate models. In this study a high-resolution regional climate model simulation performed with REMO over the period 1958-1998 is analysed for 2m temperature over the orographically complex European Alps and their surroundings called the Greater Alpine Region (GAR). The model setup is in hindcast mode meaning that the simulation is driven with perfect boundary conditions by the ERA40 reanalysis through prescribing the values at the lateral boundaries and spectral nudging of the large-scale wind field inside the model domain. The added value is analysed between the regional climate simulation with a resolution of 1/6 and the driving reanalysis with a resolution of 1.125 . Before analysing the added value both the REMO simulation and the ERA40 reanalysis are validated against different station datasets of monthly and daily mean 2m temperature. The largest dataset is the dense, homogenised and quality controlled HISTALP dataset covering the whole GAR, which gave the opportunity for the validation undertaken in this study. The temporal variability of temperature, as quantified by correlation, is well represented by both REMO and ERA40. However, both show considerable biases. The REMO bias reaches 3 K in summer in regions known to experience a problem with summer drying in a number of regional models. In winter the bias is strongly influenced by the choice of the temperature lapse rate, which is applied to compare grid box and station data at different altitudes, and has the strongest influence on inner Alpine subregions where the altitude differences are largest. By applying a constant lapse rate the REMO bias in winter in the high

  2. Snow, ice and water in alpine regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baumgartner, H.

    2009-01-01

    This article takes a look at how climate change will have a deep impact on alpine regions. The findings discussed at a conference organised by the Swiss Hydrologic Commission are presented and discussed. Flooding incidents that occurred 'once in a century' are now becoming more frequent and were considered at the conference as being an indicator of climate change. Changing hydrological factors are also discussed and the influence of climate factors in alpine regions on the water quantities in the rivers are looked at. Also, the spontaneous emptying of glacial lakes as has already happened in Switzerland and the consequences to be drawn from such incidences are discussed.

  3. Active and fossil mantle flows in the western Alpine region unravelled by seismic anisotropy analysis and high-resolution P wave tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salimbeni, Simone; Malusà, Marco G.; Zhao, Liang; Guillot, Stéphane; Pondrelli, Silvia; Margheriti, Lucia; Paul, Anne; Solarino, Stefano; Aubert, Coralie; Dumont, Thierry; Schwartz, Stéphane; Wang, Qingchen; Xu, Xiaobing; Zheng, Tianyu; Zhu, Rixiang

    2018-04-01

    The anisotropy of seismic velocities in the mantle, when integrated with high-resolution tomographic models and geologic information, can be used to detect active mantle flows in complex plate boundary areas, providing new insights on the impact of mantle processes on the topography of mountain belts. Here we use a densely spaced array of temporary broadband seismic stations to analyze the seismic anisotropy pattern of the western Alpine region, at the boundary between the Alpine and Apenninic slabs. Our results are supportive of a polyphase development of anisotropic mantle fabrics, possibly starting from the Jurassic to present. Geophysical data presented in this work, and geologic evidence taken from the literature, indicate that: (i) fossil fabrics formed during Tethyan rifting may be still preserved within the Alpine and Apenninic slabs; (ii) mantle deformation during Apenninic slab rollback is not compensated by a complete toroidal flow around the northern tip of the retreating slab; (iii) the previously observed continuous trend of anisotropy fast axes near-parallel to the western Alpine arc is confirmed. We observe that this arc-parallel trend of fast axes is located in correspondence to a low velocity anomaly in the European upper mantle, beneath regions of the Western and Ligurian Alps showing the highest uplift rates. We propose that the progressive rollback of the Apenninic slab, in the absence of a counterclockwise toroidal flow at its northern tip, induced a suction effect at the scale of the supraslab mantle. The resulting mantle flow pattern was characterized by an asthenospheric counterflow at the rear of the unbroken Western Alps slab and around its southern tip, and by an asthenospheric upwelling, mirrored by low P wave velocities, that would have favored the topographic uplift of the Alpine belt from the Mont Blanc to the Mediterranean sea.

  4. Ethnobotany of medicinal plants among the communities of Alpine and Sub-alpine regions of Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kayani, Sadaf; Ahmad, Mushtaq; Sultana, Shazia; Khan Shinwari, Zabta; Zafar, Muhammed; Yaseen, Ghulam; Hussain, Manzoor; Bibi, Tahira

    2015-04-22

    To best of our knowledge it is first quantitative ethno-botanical study from Alpine and Sub-alpine, Western Himalaya of Pakistan. The study aims to report, compare the uses and highlight the ethno-botanical significance of medicinal plants for treatment of various diseases. A total of 290 (278 males and 12 females) informants including 14 Local Traditional Healers (LTHs) were interviewed. Information was collected using semi-structured interviews, analyzed and compared by quantitative ethno-botanical indices such as Informant Consensus Factor (ICF), Relative frequency of citation (RFC), use value (UV), Fidelity Level (FL) and Jaccard index (JI). A total of 125 plant species (Gymnosperms 7 species, Monocotyledons 2 and 116 Di-cotyledons) belonging to 41 families are collected, identified and ethno-botanically assessed. The most dominant family is Ranunculaceae (20 species) followed by Rosaceae (14 species). In diseases treated, gastrointestinal tract (GIT) diseases have highest proportion (27.5%) followed by respiratory diseases (20%) in the mountain communities. The most dominant life form of plants used is herbs (78%) followed by shrubs (19%) while the most commonly used plant parts are leaves (44 reports) followed by underground part, the roots (37 reports). The highest ICF (0.68) is found for ear, nose and eye disease category followed by respiratory disorders (0.46). There are 15 medicinal plants having 100% FL. Use value (UV) and Relative frequency of citation (RFC) range from 0.03 to 0.53 and 0.04 to 0.23 respectively. In comparison, maximum similarity index is found in the studies with JI 19.52 followed by 17.39. Similarity percentage of plant uses range from 1.69% to 19.52% while dissimilarity percentage varies from 0% to 20%. The Alpine and Sub-alpine regions of Pakistan are rich in medicinal plants and still need more research exploration. On the other hand, ethno-botanical knowledge in study areas is decreasing day by day due to high emigration rates

  5. Synoptic climatology evaluation of wind fields in the alpine region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lotteraner, C.

    2009-01-01

    The present investigation basically consists of two parts: In the first part, a 22-year set of 3-hourly 2D-wind analyses (1980-2001) that have been generated within the framework of the VERACLIM (VERA-Climatology) project are evaluated climatologically over the Alpine region. VERACLIM makes use of the VERA (Vienna Enhanced Resolution Analysis) analysis system, combining both the high spatial resolution as provided by the analysis algorithm and the high temporal resolution of a comprehensive synop data set, provided by ECMWF's (European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts) data archives. The obtained charts of averaged wind speed and the mean wind vector as well as the evaluations of frequency distribution of wind speed and wind direction on gridpoints for several different time periods should be interpreted very carefully as orographic influence is not taken into consideration in the analysis algorithm. However, the 3-hourly wind analyses of the time period 1980-2001 are suitable for investigation of the so-called Alpine Pumping. For that purpose, an arbitrarily chosen border has been drawn around the Alps and the Gauss theorem has been applied in a way that the mean diurnal variations of the two-dimensional divergence over the Alps could be evaluated. The sinusoidal run of the curve not only visualizes the 'breathing of the Alps' in an impressive way, it also enables us to roughly estimate the diurnal air volume exchange on days with a weak large-scale pressure gradient and strong incoming solar radiation. The second part of this investigation deals with the development of three different 'wind-fingerprints' which are included in the VERA-system in order to improve the analysis quality. The wind-fingerprints are designed in a way that they reflect the wind field pattern in the Alpine region on days with weak large-scale pressure gradient and strong incoming solar radiation. Using the fingerprints, both the effects of channelling as well as thermally induced

  6. UAS applications in high alpine, snow-covered terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bühler, Y.; Stoffel, A.; Ginzler, C.

    2017-12-01

    Access to snow-covered, alpine terrain is often difficult and dangerous. Hence parameters such as snow depth or snow avalanche release and deposition zones are hard to map in situ with adequate spatial and temporal resolution and with spatial continuous coverage. These parameters are currently operationally measured at automated weather stations and by observer networks. However such isolated point measurements are not able to capture the information spatial continuous and to describe the high spatial variability present in complex mountain topography. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) have the potential to fill this gap by frequently covering selected high alpine areas with high spatial resolution down to ground resolutions of even few millimeters. At the WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF we test different photogrammetric UAS with visual and near infrared bands. During the last three years we were able to gather experience in more than 100 flight missions in extreme terrain. By processing the imagery applying state-of-the-art structure from motion (SfM) software, we were able to accurately document several avalanche events and to photogrammetrically map snow depth with accuracies from 1 to 20 cm (dependent on the flight height above ground) compare to manual snow probe measurements. This was even possible on homogenous snow surfaces with very little texture. A key issue in alpine terrain is flight planning. We need to cover regions at high elevations with large altitude differences (up to 1 km) with high wind speeds (up to 20 m/s) and cold temperatures (down to - 25°C). Only a few UAS are able to cope with these environmental conditions. We will give an overview on our applications of UAS in high alpine terrain that demonstrate the big potential of such systems to acquire frequent, accurate and high spatial resolution geodata in high alpine, snow covered terrain that could be essential to answer longstanding questions in avalanche and snow hydrology

  7. Halogenated greenhouse gases at the Swiss High Alpine Site of Jungfraujoch (3580 m asl): Continuous measurements and their use for regional European source allocation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimann, Stefan; Schaub, Daniel; Stemmler, Konrad; Folini, Doris; Hill, Matthias; Hofer, Peter; Buchmann, Brigitte; Simmonds, Peter G.; Greally, Brian R.; O'Doherty, Simon

    2004-03-01

    At the high Alpine site of Jungfraujoch (3580 m asl), 23 halogenated greenhouse gases are measured quasi-continuously by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GCMS). Measurement data from the years 2000-2002 are analyzed for trends and pollution events. Concentrations of the halogenated trace gases, which are already controlled in industrialized countries by the Montreal Protocol (e.g., CFCs) were at least stable or declining. Positive trends in the background concentrations were observed for substances which are used as CFC-substitutes (hydrofluorocarbons, hydrochlorofluorocarbons). Background concentrations of the hydrofluorocarbons at the Jungfraujoch increased from January 2000 until December 2002 as follows: HFC 134a (CF3CH2F) from 15 to 27 ppt, HFC 125 (CF3CHF2) from 1.4 to 2.8 ppt, and HFC 152a (CHF2CH3) from 2.3 to 3.2 ppt. For HFC 152a, a distinct increase of its concentration magnitude during pollution events was observed from 2000 to 2002, indicating rising European emissions for this compound. Background concentrations of all measured compounds were in good agreement with similar measurements at Mace Head, Ireland. On the other hand, peak concentrations were significantly higher at the Jungfraujoch. This finding is due to the proximity to potent European sources, foremost in southern Europe. The average ratio of halocarbons versus carbon monoxide (CO) concentrations above their baseline values was used to estimate source strengths for the part of Europe which most influences the Jungfraujoch during pollution events. HFCs emission estimates from Jungfraujoch tend to be higher than figures at Mace Head (Ireland) from the end of the 1990s, which either reflects the increased use of these compounds or the closer location of Jungfraujoch to major southern European sources. Transport of polluted European boundary layer air masses to the high Alpine site was observed especially during frontal passages, foehn events, and thermal lifting of air masses in summer

  8. Decadal changes of weather types in the alpine region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stefanicki, G.; Talkner, P.; Weber, R.O. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1997-06-01

    The annual occurrence of different weather types of Schuepp`s synoptic classification in the Alpine region has changed since the beginning of its recording 1945. The annual frequency (number of days) of convective types has increased and that of advective types has decreased. In parallel the number of long-lasting convective episodes rose and the number of long-lasting advective episodes lessened. Most of the change took place in winter. The frequencies of different weather types and the annual mean of certain meteorological parameters are significantly correlated. Moreover, there is a strong interdependence between the subclass of high pressure types and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index. (author) 3 figs., 3 refs.

  9. Statistical Downscaling Of Local Climate In The Alpine Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaspar, Severin; Philipp, Andreas; Jacobeit, Jucundus

    2016-04-01

    The impact of climate change on the alpine region was disproportional strong in the past decades compared to the surrounding areas, which becomes manifest in a higher increase in surface air temperature. Beside the thermal changes also implications for the hydrological cycle may be expected, acting as a very important factor not only for the ecosystem but also for mankind, in the form of water security or considering economical aspects like winter tourism etc. Therefore, in climate impact studies, it is necessary to focus on variables with high influence on the hydrological cycle, for example temperature, precipitation, wind, humidity and radiation. The aim of this study is to build statistical downscaling models which are able to reproduce temperature and precipitation at the mountainous alpine weather stations Zugspitze and Sonnblick and to further project these models into the future to identify possible changes in the behavior of these climate variables and with that in the hydrological cycle. Beside facing a in general very complex terrain in this high elevated regions, we have the advantage of a more direct atmospheric influence on the meteorology of the exposed weather stations from the large scale circulation. Two nonlinear statistical methods are developed to model the station-data series on a daily basis: On the one hand a conditional classification approach was used and on the other hand a model based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) was built. The latter is in focus of this presentation. One of the important steps of developing a new model approach is to find a reliable predictor setup with e.g. informative predictor variables or adequate location and size of the spatial domain. The question is: Can we include synoptic background knowledge to identify an optimal domain for an ANN approach? The yet developed ANN setups and configurations show promising results in downscaling both, temperature (up to 80 % of explained variance) and precipitation (up

  10. Photochemistry and aerosol in alpine region: mixing and transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaxel, E.

    2006-11-01

    The Alpine arc deeply interacts with general circulation of atmosphere. By studying configurations in summer and winter over various Alpine areas, this work explains how mixing and transport of airborne pollutants happen, both gaseous and particulate matter, from their emission sources to free troposphere. Using observational results and a comprehensive Eulerian modelling system, one focuses on mechanisms of pollution by ozone in summer and by particulate matter and benzene in winter. After having validated the modelling system using datasets from field experiments POVA, GRENOPHOT and ESCOMPTE, it is applied on two periods with principal interest in the Grenoble area: one is the heat-wave August 2003 and the other is a long episode of thermal inversion in February 2005. Uncertainties are also calculated. One finishes by applying the modelling chain to understand how a stratospheric intrusion following a tropopause fold affected the Alpine region in July 2004. (author)

  11. Photochemistry and aerosol in alpine region: mixing and transport; Photochimie et aerosol en region alpine: melange et transport

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chaxel, E

    2006-11-15

    The Alpine arc deeply interacts with general circulation of atmosphere. By studying configurations in summer and winter over various Alpine areas, this work explains how mixing and transport of airborne pollutants happen, both gaseous and particulate matter, from their emission sources to free troposphere. Using observational results and a comprehensive Eulerian modelling system, one focuses on mechanisms of pollution by ozone in summer and by particulate matter and benzene in winter. After having validated the modelling system using datasets from field experiments POVA, GRENOPHOT and ESCOMPTE, it is applied on two periods with principal interest in the Grenoble area: one is the heat-wave August 2003 and the other is a long episode of thermal inversion in February 2005. Uncertainties are also calculated. One finishes by applying the modelling chain to understand how a stratospheric intrusion following a tropopause fold affected the Alpine region in July 2004. (author)

  12. Climate change and tourism in the alpine regions of Switzerland

    OpenAIRE

    Bürki, R; Abegg, B; Elsasser, H

    2007-01-01

    For many alpine areas in Switzerland, winter tourism is the most important source of income, and snow-reliability is one of the key elements of the offers made by tourism in the Alps. 85% of Switzerland’s current ski resorts can be designated as snow-reliable. If climate change occurs, the level of snow-reliability will rise from 1200 m up to 1800 m over the next few decades. Only 44% of the ski resorts wouldthen still be snow-reliable. While some regions may be able to maintain their winter ...

  13. Technical Note: Seasonality in alpine water resources management - a regional assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanham, D.; Fleischhacker, E.; Rauch, W.

    2008-01-01

    Alpine regions are particularly affected by seasonal variations in water demand and water availability. Especially the winter period is critical from an operational point of view, as being characterised by high water demands due to tourism and low water availability due to the temporal storage of precipitation as snow and ice. The clear definition of summer and winter periods is thus an essential prerequisite for water resource management in alpine regions. This paper presents a GIS-based multi criteria method to determine the winter season. A snow cover duration dataset serves as basis for this analysis. Different water demand stakeholders, the alpine hydrology and the present day water supply infrastructure are taken into account. Technical snow-making and (winter) tourism were identified as the two major seasonal water demand stakeholders in the study area, which is the Kitzbueheler region in the Austrian Alps. Based upon different geographical datasets winter was defined as the period from December to March, and summer as the period from April to November. By determining potential regional water balance deficits or surpluses in the present day situation and in future, important management decisions such as water storage and allocation can be made and transposed to the local level.

  14. Increasing alpine transit traffic through Switzerland will considerably enhance high altitude alpine pollutant levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Prevot, A S.H.; Dommen, J; Furger, M; Graber, W K [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1999-08-01

    Within the EU-Project VOTALP (Vertical Ozone Transports in the Alps), we have shown that deep alpine valleys like the Mesolcina Valley very efficiently transport air out of the polluted valley up to altitudes between 2000 and near 4000 m asl (above sea level). Pollutants emitted in these valleys are very efficiently transported up to high altitudes. (author) 2 figs., 1 tab., 2 refs.

  15. Regional climate models downscaling in the Alpine area with multimodel superensemble

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Cane

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The climatic scenarios show a strong signal of warming in the Alpine area already for the mid-XXI century. The climate simulations, however, even when obtained with regional climate models (RCMs, are affected by strong errors when compared with observations, due both to their difficulties in representing the complex orography of the Alps and to limitations in their physical parametrization. Therefore, the aim of this work is to reduce these model biases by using a specific post processing statistic technique, in order to obtain a more suitable projection of climate change scenarios in the Alpine area. For our purposes we used a selection of regional climate models (RCMs runs which were developed in the framework of the ENSEMBLES project. They were carefully chosen with the aim to maximise the variety of leading global climate models and of the RCMs themselves, calculated on the SRES scenario A1B. The reference observations for the greater Alpine area were extracted from the European dataset E-OBS (produced by the ENSEMBLES project, which have an available resolution of 25 km. For the study area of Piedmont daily temperature and precipitation observations (covering the period from 1957 to the present were carefully gridded on a 14 km grid over Piedmont region through the use of an optimal interpolation technique. Hence, we applied the multimodel superensemble technique to temperature fields, reducing the high biases of RCMs temperature field compared to observations in the control period. We also proposed the application of a brand new probabilistic multimodel superensemble dressing technique, already applied to weather forecast models successfully, to RCMS: the aim was to estimate precipitation fields, with careful description of precipitation probability density functions conditioned to the model outputs. This technique allowed for reducing the strong precipitation overestimation, arising from the use of RCMs, over the Alpine chain and to

  16. Regional climate models downscaling in the Alpine area with multimodel superensemble

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cane, D.; Barbarino, S.; Renier, L. A.; Ronchi, C.

    2013-05-01

    The climatic scenarios show a strong signal of warming in the Alpine area already for the mid-XXI century. The climate simulations, however, even when obtained with regional climate models (RCMs), are affected by strong errors when compared with observations, due both to their difficulties in representing the complex orography of the Alps and to limitations in their physical parametrization. Therefore, the aim of this work is to reduce these model biases by using a specific post processing statistic technique, in order to obtain a more suitable projection of climate change scenarios in the Alpine area. For our purposes we used a selection of regional climate models (RCMs) runs which were developed in the framework of the ENSEMBLES project. They were carefully chosen with the aim to maximise the variety of leading global climate models and of the RCMs themselves, calculated on the SRES scenario A1B. The reference observations for the greater Alpine area were extracted from the European dataset E-OBS (produced by the ENSEMBLES project), which have an available resolution of 25 km. For the study area of Piedmont daily temperature and precipitation observations (covering the period from 1957 to the present) were carefully gridded on a 14 km grid over Piedmont region through the use of an optimal interpolation technique. Hence, we applied the multimodel superensemble technique to temperature fields, reducing the high biases of RCMs temperature field compared to observations in the control period. We also proposed the application of a brand new probabilistic multimodel superensemble dressing technique, already applied to weather forecast models successfully, to RCMS: the aim was to estimate precipitation fields, with careful description of precipitation probability density functions conditioned to the model outputs. This technique allowed for reducing the strong precipitation overestimation, arising from the use of RCMs, over the Alpine chain and to reproduce well the

  17. Measurements concerning the immission load in the Alpine region with passive samplers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kirchner, M.; Suppan, P.

    1994-02-01

    This project deals with measurements concerning the nuisance situation in various areas of the Alpine region using selected passive collectors for ozone and NO 2 . In a first partial step (phase I) a comparative experiment, building on a pilot test, with the use of different passive collectors in sites in the Alpine region was carried through. In a second stage of the project (Phase II) two types of passive collectors were used at suitable altitude profiles in the Alpine region to measure ozone levels. In this way, more detailed knowledge on the vertical distribution of ozone in areas with a varied orography was to be obtained. The study is a joint project of numerous scientific tasks forces from several countries and a number of institutions participating in the 'ARGE ALP' working group of Alpine countries. Results of the first project phase are reported. (orig./KW) [de

  18. Global Warming and the Summertime Evapotranspiration Regime of the Alpine Region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Calanca, P.; Jasper, K. [Agroscope FAL Reckenholz, Swiss Federal Research Station for Agroecology and Agriculture, CH-8046 Zuerich (Switzerland); Roesch, A.; Wild, M. [Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, CH-8092 Zuerich (Switzerland)

    2006-11-15

    Changes of the summer evapotranspiration regime under increased levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases are discussed for three Alpine river basins on the basis of a new set of simulations carried out with a high-resolution hydrological model. The climate change signal was inferred from the output of two simulations with a state-of-the-art global climate model (GCM), a reference run valid for 1961-1990 and a time-slice simulation valid for 2071-2100 under forcing from the A2 IPCC emission scenario. In this particular GCM experiment and with respect to the Alpine region summer temperature was found to increase by 3 to 4C, whereas precipitation was found to decrease by 10 to 20%. Global radiation and water vapor pressure deficit were found to increase by about 5% and 2 hPa, respectively. On this background, an overall increase of potential evapotranspiration of about 20% relative to the baseline was predicted by the hydrological model, with important variations between but also within individual basins. The results of the hydrological simulations also revealed a reduction in the evapotranspiration efficiency that depends on altitude. Accordingly, actual evapotranspiration was found to increase at high altitudes and to the south of the Alps, but to decrease in low elevation areas of the northern forelands and in the inner-Alpine domain. Such a differentiation does not appear in the GCM scenario, which predicts an overall increase in evapotranspiration over the Alps. This underlines the importance of detailed simulations for the quantitative assessment of the regional impact of climate change on the hydrological cycle.

  19. [Effects of altitudes on soil microbial biomass and enzyme activity in alpine-gorge regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Rui; Wu, Fu Zhong; Yang, Wan Qin; Xu, Zhen Feng; Tani, Bo; Wang, Bin; Li, Jun; Chang, Chen Hui

    2016-04-22

    In order to understand the variations of soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities with the change of altitude, a field incubation was conducted in dry valley, ecotone between dry valley and mountain forest, subalpine coniferous forest, alpine forest and alpine meadow from 1563 m to 3994 m of altitude in the alpine-gorge region of western Sichuan. The microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, and the activities of invertase, urease and acid phosphorus were measured in both soil organic layer and mineral soil layer. Both the soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities showed the similar tendency in soil organic layer. They increased from 2158 m to 3028 m, then decreased to the lowest value at 3593 m, and thereafter increased until 3994 m in the alpine-gorge region. In contrast, the soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities in mineral soil layer showed the trends as, the subalpine forest at 3028 m > alpine meadow at 3994 m > montane forest ecotone at 2158 m > alpine forest at 3593 m > dry valley at 1563 m. Regardless of altitudes, soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities were significantly higher in soil organic layer than in mineral soil layer. The soil microbial biomass was significantly positively correlated with the activities of the measured soil enzymes. Moreover, both the soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities were significantly positively correlated with soil water content, organic carbon, and total nitrogen. The activity of soil invertase was significantly positively correlated with soil phosphorus content, and the soil acid phosphatase was so with soil phosphorus content and soil temperature. In brief, changes in vegetation and other environmental factors resulting from altitude change might have strong effects on soil biochemical properties in the alpine-gorge region.

  20. Generic Regional Development Strategies from Local Stakeholders' Scenarios - an Alpine Village Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Loibl

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available The article discusses the participatory elaboration of strategies for sustainable regional development in an Alpine tourist region in Austria to cope with global change effects evolving locally, considering climate change, economic change as well as (local societal change. Local stakeholders in an Alpine village in the Montafon region contributed in workshops to achieve the final results: participant teams conducted system analyses of the regional system to explore key elements of the region. Narrative scenarios described possible positive and negative development trends and indicated the critical issues controlling future development; 3D-images of landscape transition simulations show the consequences of certain development directions. Alternative development directions supported the local stakeholders to elaborate regional development strategies. In the end, the scientist team derived generic strategies for Alpine regions based on the locally developed strategy bundle. The article presents the intention, progress and outcome of the participatory approach and elaborates the potential to derive generic strategies from local ones and discusses the possibly occurring conflicts regarding cross-scale transfers of these local strategies. Overall, tourism was seen as a key element for future regional development, which can on the one hand derogate Alpine regions and is on the other hand threatened by climate change and diminution of landscape attractiveness. The suggested development strategies will help to cope with global change issues mitigating the negative consequences on the local society and environment.

  1. Relation between extinction and assisted colonization of plants in the arctic-alpine and boreal regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pykälä, Juha

    2017-06-01

    Assisted colonization of vascular plants is considered by many ecologists an important tool to preserve biodiversity threatened by climate change. I argue that assisted colonization may have negative consequences in arctic-alpine and boreal regions. The observed slow movement of plants toward the north has been an argument for assisted colonization. However, these range shifts may be slow because for many plants microclimatic warming (ignored by advocates of assisted colonization) has been smaller than macroclimatic warming. Arctic-alpine and boreal plants may have limited possibilities to disperse farther north or to higher elevations. I suggest that arctic-alpine species are more likely to be driven to extinction because of competitive exclusion by southern species than by increasing temperatures. If so, the future existence of arctic-alpine and boreal flora may depend on delaying or preventing the migration of plants toward the north to allow northern species to evolve to survive in a warmer climate. In the arctic-alpine region, preventing the dispersal of trees and shrubs may be the most important method to mitigate the negative effects of climate change. The purported conservation benefits of assisted colonization should not be used to promote the migration of invasive species by forestry. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  2. Integration of 3D geological modeling and gravity surveys for geothermal prospection in an Alpine region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guglielmetti, L.; Comina, C.; Abdelfettah, Y.; Schill, E.; Mandrone, G.

    2013-11-01

    Thermal sources are common manifestations of geothermal energy resources in Alpine regions. The up-flow of the fluid is well-known to be often linked to cross-cutting fault zones providing a significant volume of fractures. Since conventional exploration methods are challenging in such areas of high topography and complicated logistics, 3D geological modeling based on structural investigation becomes a useful tool for assessing the overall geology of the investigated sites. Geological modeling alone is, however, less effective if not integrated with deep subsurface investigations that could provide a first order information on geological boundaries and an imaging of geological structures. With this aim, in the present paper the combined use of 3D geological modeling and gravity surveys for geothermal prospection of a hydrothermal area in the western Alps was carried out on two sites located in the Argentera Massif (NW Italy). The geothermal activity of the area is revealed by thermal anomalies with surface evidences, such as hot springs, at temperatures up to 70 °C. Integration of gravity measurements and 3D modeling investigates the potential of this approach in the context of geothermal exploration in Alpine regions where a very complex geological and structural setting is expected. The approach used in the present work is based on the comparison between the observed gravity and the gravity effect of the 3D geological models, in order to enhance local effects related to the geothermal system. It is shown that a correct integration of 3D modeling and detailed geophysical survey could allow a better characterization of geological structures involved in geothermal fluids circulation. Particularly, gravity inversions have successfully delineated the continuity in depth of low density structures, such as faults and fractured bands observed at the surface, and have been of great help in improving the overall geological model.

  3. A probabilistic method for streamflow projection and associated uncertainty analysis in a data sparse alpine region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ren, Weiwei; Yang, Tao; Shi, Pengfei; Xu, Chong-yu; Zhang, Ke; Zhou, Xudong; Shao, Quanxi; Ciais, Philippe

    2018-06-01

    Climate change imposes profound influence on regional hydrological cycle and water security in many alpine regions worldwide. Investigating regional climate impacts using watershed scale hydrological models requires a large number of input data such as topography, meteorological and hydrological data. However, data scarcity in alpine regions seriously restricts evaluation of climate change impacts on water cycle using conventional approaches based on global or regional climate models, statistical downscaling methods and hydrological models. Therefore, this study is dedicated to development of a probabilistic model to replace the conventional approaches for streamflow projection. The probabilistic model was built upon an advanced Bayesian Neural Network (BNN) approach directly fed by the large-scale climate predictor variables and tested in a typical data sparse alpine region, the Kaidu River basin in Central Asia. Results show that BNN model performs better than the general methods across a number of statistical measures. The BNN method with flexible model structures by active indicator functions, which reduce the dependence on the initial specification for the input variables and the number of hidden units, can work well in a data limited region. Moreover, it can provide more reliable streamflow projections with a robust generalization ability. Forced by the latest bias-corrected GCM scenarios, streamflow projections for the 21st century under three RCP emission pathways were constructed and analyzed. Briefly, the proposed probabilistic projection approach could improve runoff predictive ability over conventional methods and provide better support to water resources planning and management under data limited conditions as well as enable a facilitated climate change impact analysis on runoff and water resources in alpine regions worldwide.

  4. Critical Hydrologic and Atmospheric Measurements in Complex Alpine Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parlange, M. B.; Bou-Zeid, E.; Barrenetxea, G.; Krichane, M.; Ingelrest, F.; Couach, O.; Luyet, V.; Vetterli, M.; Lehning, M.; Duffy, C.; Tobin, C.; Selker, J.; Kumar, M.

    2007-12-01

    The Alps are often referred to as the « Water Towers of Europe » and as such play an essential role in European water resources. The impact of climatic change is expected to be particularly pronounced in the Alps and the lack of detailed hydrologic field observations is problematic for predictions of hydrologic and hazard assessment. Advances in information technology and communications provide important possibilities to improve the situation with relatively few measurements. We will present sensorscope technology (arrays of wireless weather stations including soil moisture, pressure, and temperature) that has now been deployed at the Le Genepi and Grand St. Bernard pass. In addition, a Distributed Temperature Sensor array on the stream beds has been deployed and stream discharge monitored. The high spatial resolution data collected in these previously "ungaged" regions are used in conjunction with new generation hydrologic models. The framework as to what is possible today with sensor arrays and modeling in extreme mountain environments is discussed.

  5. Identification of mineral dust layers in high alpine snow packs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greilinger, Marion; Kau, Daniela; Schauer, Gerhard; Kasper-Giebl, Anne

    2017-04-01

    Deserts serve as a major source for aerosols in the atmosphere with mineral dust as a main contributor to primary aerosol mass. Especially the Sahara, the largest desert in the world, contributes roughly half of the primarily emitted aerosol mass found in the atmosphere [1]. The eroded Saharan dust is episodically transported over thousands of kilometers with synoptic wind patterns towards Europe [2] and reaches Austria about 20 to 30 days per year. Once the Saharan dust is removed from the atmosphere via dry or wet deposition processes, the chemical composition of the precipitation or the affected environment is significantly changed. Saharan dust serves on the one hand as high ionic input leading to an increase of ionic species such as calcium, magnesium or sulfate. On the other hand Saharan dust provides a high alkaline input neutralizing acidic components and causing the pH to increase [3]. Based on these changes in the ion composition, the pH and cross plots of the ion and conductivity balance [4] we tried to develop a method to identify Saharan dust layers in high alpine snow packs. We investigated seasonal snow packs of two high alpine sampling sites situated on the surrounding glaciers of the meteorological Sonnblick observatory serving as a global GAW (Global Atmospheric Watch) station located in the National Park Hohe Tauern in the Austrian Alps. Samples with 10 cm resolution representing the whole winter accumulation period were taken just prior to the start of snow melt at the end of April 2016. In both snow packs two layers with clearly different chemical behavior were observed. In comparison with the aerosol data from the Sonnblick observatory, these layers could be clearly identified as Saharan dust layers. Identified Saharan dust layers in the snow pack allow calculations of the ecological impact of deposited ions, with and without Saharan dust, during snow melt. Furthermore the chemical characteristics for the identification of Saharan dust layers

  6. Regional CO2 budget, countermeasures and reduction aims for the Alpine tourist region of Davos, Switzerland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walz, A.; Calonder, G.-P.; Hagedorn, F.; Lardelli, C.; Lundstroem, C.; Stoeckli, V.

    2008-01-01

    In its latest report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that global climate change can still be slowed down if greenhouse gas emissions are rapidly and strongly reduced. We present a detailed regional CO 2 budget for the Alpine tourist region of Davos, Switzerland, including emissions and potential sinks. The aim of the study was (1) to estimate the most important CO 2 sources and sinks, (2) to identify the most efficient reduction measures and (3) to assess the feasibility of different reduction targets. The results show that the emissions due to heating contribute to a proportion of 86.3% to the total budget, which is mainly due to the harsh local climate and the tourism-focused local economy. They also show that the yearly CO 2 emissions per capita in Davos exceed the Swiss average of 6 tonnes by 25%. The augmentation of the carbon pool through the natural environment compares to 10.3% of the total emissions, and further afforestation of the community forest can contribute to an improvement of the total budget by 2.6%. The reduction aim of -15% until 2015 (compared with 2004), as set by the municipality itself, could be easily reached through better building insulation and the use of renewable energy sources. More ambitious aims, such as a 2000 W-society or CO 2 neutrality, however, will not be realised without major drawbacks in living standards

  7. Identification and climatology of Alpine pumping from a regional climate simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maximilian eGraf

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The thermally driven circulation between the European Alps and the alpine foreland - named Alpine pumping – occurs regularly under clear and calm weather conditions. While previous studies focused on the impact of Alpine pumping on moist convection and transport of air pollutants, this study was motivated by its ventilation effect for Munich, located about 50 km north of the Alps in undulating and only slightly inclined terrain, where local thermal circulations are weak. Hourly data from a reanalysis driven regional climate simulation with COSMO-CLM model for the period 1989 to 2008 were analysed to identify days with Alpine pumping and to determine the mean diurnal characteristics of this regional thermal circulation. Four literature derived combinations of meteorological criteria were tested to identify days favorable for Alpine pumping from COSMO-CLM results. The first criterion selects days with a daily sum of solar radiation ≥20 MJ/m2 and has been used in an earlier observational study. On average 60 d/y are fulfilling the criterion in the model simulation, which compares well to the 67 d/y determined from observations. The other three criteria combinations consider a maximum wind velocity at 850 hPa, a maximum daily precipitation sum, and/or a maximum mean cloud cover. The mean annual number of selected days is lower for these criteria combinations and ranges between 20 and 52. Diurnal wind reversals occur on 77 to 81% of the selected days, depending on the criteria combinationThe daily solar radiation sum of 20 MJ/m2 is only exceeded during April to September, while days satisfying the criteria combinations without the radiation threshold occur all year round. In agreement with observations, the simulated regional thermally driven wind field extends up to ~100 km north of the Alps with average near-surface wind speeds of 0.5-1.5 m/s in the Munich area. With increasing distance from the Alps, the diurnal cycle of Alpine pumping is

  8. Seasonality in the alpine water logistic system on a regional basis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanham, D.; Fleischhacker, E.; Rauch, W.

    2007-08-01

    In this study the water logistic system is defined as the interaction of the subsystems water resources, water supply and water demand in terms of water flow. The analysis of a water balance in alpine regions is strongly influenced by both temporal and spatial seasonal fluctuations within these elements, the latter due to the vertical dimension of mountainous areas. Therefore the determination of different seasons plays a key role within the assessment of alpine water logistic systems. In most studies a water balance for a certain region is generated on an annual, monthly or classic 4-seasonal basis. This paper presents a GIS-based multi criteria method to determine an optimal winter and summer period, taking into account different water demand stakeholders, alpine hydrology and the characteristic present day water supply infrastructure of the Alps. Technical snow-making and (winter) tourism were identified as the two major seasonal water demand stakeholders in the study area, which is the Kitzbueheler region in the Austrian Alps. Based upon the geographical datasets mean snow cover start and end date, winter was defined as the period from December to March, and summer as the period from April to November.

  9. EXPLORING THE POTENTIAL OF AERIAL PHOTOGRAMMETRY FOR 3D MODELLING OF HIGH-ALPINE ENVIRONMENTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Legat

    2016-03-01

    Based on the very promising results, some general recommendations for aerial photogrammetry processing in high-alpine areas are made to achieve best possible accuracy of the final 3D-, 2.5D- and 2D products.

  10. The Alpine snow-albedo feedback in regional climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Kevin J.-P. M.; Kotlarski, Sven; Scherrer, Simon C.; Schär, Christoph

    2017-02-01

    The effect of the snow-albedo feedback (SAF) on 2m temperatures and their future changes in the European Alps is investigated in the ENSEMBLES regional climate models (RCMs) with a focus on the spring season. A total of 14 re-analysis-driven RCM experiments covering the period 1961-2000 and 10 GCM-driven transient climate change projections for 1950-2099 are analysed. A positive springtime SAF is found in all RCMs, but the range of the diagnosed SAF is large. Results are compared against an observation-based SAF estimate. For some RCMs, values very close to this estimate are found; other models show a considerable overestimation of the SAF. Net shortwave radiation has the largest influence of all components of the energy balance on the diagnosed SAF and can partly explain its spatial variability. Model deficiencies in reproducing 2m temperatures above snow and ice and associated cold temperature biases at high elevations seem to contribute to a SAF overestimation in several RCMs. The diagnosed SAF in the observational period strongly influences the estimated SAF contribution to twenty first century temperature changes in the European Alps. This contribution is subject to a clear elevation dependency that is governed by the elevation-dependent change in the number of snow days. Elevations of maximum SAF contribution range from 1500 to 2000 m in spring and are found above 2000 m in summer. Here, a SAF contribution to the total simulated temperature change between 0 and 0.5 °C until 2099 (multi-model mean in spring: 0.26 °C) or 0 and 14 % (multi-model mean in spring: 8 %) is obtained for models showing a realistic SAF. These numbers represent a well-funded but only approximate estimate of the SAF contribution to future warming, and a remaining contribution of model-specific SAF misrepresentations cannot be ruled out.

  11. Peucedanum ostruthium (L. Koch: Morphological and phytochemical variability of twelve accessions from the Swiss alpine region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCardell, Jessica Heather

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Ostruthin, a natural bioactive compound mainly occurring in the roots of Peucedanum ostruthium, is the focus of this study. P. ostruthium was collected from twelve locations in the Swiss alpine region and reared in an experimental field, subdivided into twelve lots over two years. In the spring and fall, a portion of each of the twelve accessions was harvested and separated into above and below ground plant parts. The dried plants were then extracted with 60 % ethanol using accelerated solvent extraction (ASE and analyzed using high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC.The above and below ground plant parts were then analyzed concerning their dry matter yield (DMY, their ostruthin concentration and their ostruthin yield. Focusing on ostruthin, it was found that the below ground plant parts harvested in the fall rendered the highest ostruthin yield. Furthermore, a variability concerning ostruthin among the twelve accessions was found. This variability among the accessions is of interest with regards to a breeding program used to develop a cultivar with a high ostruthin yield.

  12. Snow cover dynamics and water balance in complex high alpine terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warscher, Michael; Kraller, Gabriele; Kunstmann, Harald; Strasser, Ulrich; Franz, Helmut

    2010-05-01

    The water balance in high alpine regions in its full complexity is so far insufficiently understood. High altitudinal gradients, a strong variability of meteorological variables in time and space, complex hydrogeological situations, unquantified lateral snow transport processes and heterogenous snow cover dynamics result in high uncertainties in the quantification of the water balance. To achieve interpretable modeling results we have complemented the deterministic hydrological model WaSiM-ETH with the high-alpine specific snow model AMUNDSEN. The integration of the new snow module was done to improve the modeling of water fluxes influenced by the dynamics of the snow cover, which greatly affect the water cycle in high alpine regions. To enhance the reproduction of snow deposition and ablation processes, the new approach calculates the energy balance of the snow cover considering the terrain-dependent radiation fluxes, the interaction between tree canopy and snow cover as well as lateral snow transport processes. The test site for our study is the Berchtesgaden National Park which is characterized by an extreme topography with mountain ranges covering an altitude from 607 to 2713 m.a.s.l. About one quarter of the investigated catchment area, which comprises 433 km² in total, is terrain steeper than 35°. Due to water soluble limestone being predominant in the region, a high number of subsurface water pathways (karst) exist. The results of several tracer experiments and extensive data of spring observations provide additional information to meet the challenge of modeling the unknown subsurface pathways and the complex groundwater system of the region. The validation of the new snow module is based on a dense network of meteorological stations which have been adapted to measure physical properties of the snow cover like snow water equivalent and liquid water content. We will present first results which show that the integration of the new snow module generates a

  13. Effect of degradation intensity on grassland ecosystem services in the alpine region of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Wen

    Full Text Available The deterioration of alpine grassland has great impact on ecosystem services in the alpine region of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. However, the effect of grassland degradation on ecosystem services and the consequence of grassland deterioration on economic loss still remains a mystery. So, in this study, we assessed four types of ecosystem services following the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment classification, along a degradation gradient. Five sites of alpine grassland at different levels of degradation were investigated in Guoluo Prefecture of Qinghai Province, China. The species composition, aboveground biomass, soil total organic carbon (TOC, and soil total nitrogen (TN were tested to evaluate major ecological services of the alpine grassland. We estimated the value of primary production, carbon storage, nitrogen recycling, and plant diversity. The results show the ecosystem services of alpine grassland varied along the degradation gradient. The ecosystem services of degraded grassland (moderate, heavy and severe were all significantly lower than non-degraded grassland. Interestingly, the lightly degraded grassland provided more economic benefit from carbon maintenance and nutrient sequestration compared to non-degraded. Due to the destruction of the alpine grassland, the economic loss associated with decrease of biomass in 2008 was $198/ha. Until 2008, the economic loss caused by carbon emissions and nitrogen loss on severely degraded grassland was up to $8 033/ha and $13 315/ha, respectively. Urgent actions are required to maintain or promote the ecosystem services of alpine grassland in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

  14. Effect of degradation intensity on grassland ecosystem services in the alpine region of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Lu; Dong, Shikui; Li, Yuanyuan; Li, Xiaoyan; Shi, Jianjun; Wang, Yanlong; Liu, Demei; Ma, Yushou

    2013-01-01

    The deterioration of alpine grassland has great impact on ecosystem services in the alpine region of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. However, the effect of grassland degradation on ecosystem services and the consequence of grassland deterioration on economic loss still remains a mystery. So, in this study, we assessed four types of ecosystem services following the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment classification, along a degradation gradient. Five sites of alpine grassland at different levels of degradation were investigated in Guoluo Prefecture of Qinghai Province, China. The species composition, aboveground biomass, soil total organic carbon (TOC), and soil total nitrogen (TN) were tested to evaluate major ecological services of the alpine grassland. We estimated the value of primary production, carbon storage, nitrogen recycling, and plant diversity. The results show the ecosystem services of alpine grassland varied along the degradation gradient. The ecosystem services of degraded grassland (moderate, heavy and severe) were all significantly lower than non-degraded grassland. Interestingly, the lightly degraded grassland provided more economic benefit from carbon maintenance and nutrient sequestration compared to non-degraded. Due to the destruction of the alpine grassland, the economic loss associated with decrease of biomass in 2008 was $198/ha. Until 2008, the economic loss caused by carbon emissions and nitrogen loss on severely degraded grassland was up to $8 033/ha and $13 315/ha, respectively. Urgent actions are required to maintain or promote the ecosystem services of alpine grassland in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

  15. Air quality remote sensing over alpine regions with METEOSAT SEVIRI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emili, E.; Popp, C.; Petitta, M.; Riffler, M.; Wunderle, S.

    2009-04-01

    It is well demonstrated that small aerosol particles or particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5) affect air quality and can have severe effects on human's health. Hence, it is of great interest for public institutions to have an efficient PM monitoring network. In the last decades this data has been provided from ground-based instruments. Moreover, due to the fast development of space-borne remote sensing instruments, we can now be able to take advantage of air pollution measurements from space, which bears the potential to fill up the gap of spatial coverage from ground-based networks. This also improves the capability to assess air pollutants transport properties together with a better implementation in forecasting data assimilation procedures. In this study we examine the possibility of using data from the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI), on-board of the geostationary Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) platform, to provide PM concentrations values over Switzerland. SEVIRI's high temporal resolution (15 minutes) could be very useful in investigating the daily behaviour of air pollutants and therefore be a good complement to measurements from polar orbiting sensors (e.g. MODIS). Switzerland is of particular interest because of its mountainous orography that hampers pollutants dispersion. Further, major transalpine connection routes, often characterised by high traffic load, act as a significant air pollution source. The south of Switzerland is also occasionally influenced by pollutants transported from the highly industrialised Po Valley in northern Italy. We investigate the existence of a linear relation between the SEVIRI retrieved AOD (Aerosol Optical Depth) and the PM concentration obtained from the ground-based air quality network NABEL (Nationales Beobachtungsnetz fuer Luftfremdstoffe). The temporal trend of this two quantities shows a significant relationship over various locations. The correlation coefficient is in some cases higher than 0

  16. Isotope study in the Alpine karst region of Rawil (Switzerland)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schotterer, U.; Siegenthaler, U.; Oeschger, H.; Wildberger, A.; Nabholz, W.

    1978-01-01

    An isotope study in the karst of the high Alps in Switzerland is described. From 1973 to 1978 discharge, 3 H, delta 18 O, conductivity and temperature were measured in representative springs. The springs are influenced by snowmelt in late spring and summer, by rain in late summer and autumn, and in the winter period, when infiltration stops, by reservoir water. Since tritium in precipitation in the last years scattered irregularly in time and space, the residence time of winter baseflow (2-4 years) could not be determined very precisely. The pronounced difference in delta 18 O between several springs allowed us to estimate the difference in mean altitude of their recharge areas. (orig.) [de

  17. Framework for probabilistic flood risk assessment in an Alpine region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneeberger, Klaus; Huttenlau, Matthias; Steinberger, Thomas; Achleitner, Stefan; Stötter, Johann

    2014-05-01

    historic and synthetic flood events have to be spatially interpolated from point scale (i.e. river gauges) to the river network. Therefore, topological kriging (Top-kriging) proposed by Skøien et al. (2006) is applied. Top-kriging considers the nested structure of river networks and is therefore suitable to regionalise flood characteristics. Thus, the characteristics of a large number of possible flood events can be transferred to arbitrary locations (e.g. community level) at the river network within a study region. This framework has been used to generate a set of spatial correlated river flood events in the Austrian Federal Province of Vorarlberg. In addition, loss-probability-curves for each community has been calculated based on official inundation maps of public authorities, elements at risks and their vulnerability. One location along the river network within each community refers as interface between the set of flood events and the individual loss-probability relationships for the individual communities. Consequently, every flood event from the historic and synthetic generated dataset can be monetary evaluated. Thus, a time series comprising a large number of flood events and their corresponding monetary losses serves as basis for a probabilistic flood risk assessment. This includes expected annual losses and estimates of extreme event losses, which occur over the course of a certain time period. The gained results are essential decision-support for primary insurers, reinsurance companies and public authorities in order to setup a scale adequate risk management.

  18. [Spatial and temporal variations of hydrological characteristic on the landscape zone scale in alpine cold region].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yong-Gang; Hu, Jin-Fei; Xiao, Hong-Lang; Zou, Song-Bing; Yin, Zhen-Liang

    2013-10-01

    There are few studies on the hydrological characteristics on the landscape zone scale in alpine cold region at present. This paper aimed to identify the spatial and temporal variations in the origin and composition of the runoff, and to reveal the hydrological characteristics in each zone, based on the isotopic analysis of glacier, snow, frozen soil, groundwater, etc. The results showed that during the wet season, heavy precipitation and high temperature in the Mafengou River basin caused secondary evaporation which led to isotope fractionation effects. Therefore, the isotope values remained high. Temperature effects were significant. During the dry season, the temperature was low. Precipitation was in the solid state during the cold season and the evaporation was weak. Water vapor came from the evaporation of local water bodies. Therefore, less secondary evaporation and water vapor exchange occurred, leading to negative values of delta18O and deltaD. delta18O and deltaD values of precipitation and various water bodies exhibited strong seasonal variations. Precipitation exhibited altitude effects, delta18O = -0. 005 2H - 8. 951, deltaD = -0.018 5H - 34. 873. Other water bodies did not show altitude effects in the wet season and dry season, because the runoff was not only recharged by precipitation, but also influenced by the freezing and thawing process of the glacier, snow and frozen soil. The mutual transformation of precipitation, melt water, surface water and groundwater led to variations in isotopic composition. Therefore, homogenization and evaporation effect are the main control factors of isotope variations.

  19. Genetic structure and evolutionary history of three alpine sclerophyllous oaks in East Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains and adjacent regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Feng

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The East Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains (EH-HM region has a high biodiversity and harbours numerous endemic alpine plants. This is probably the result of combined orographic and climate oscillations occurring since late Tertiary. Here, we determined the genetic structure and evolutionary history of alpine oak species (including Q. spinosa, Q. aquifolioides and Q. rehderiana using both cytoplasmic-nuclear markers and ecological niche models (ENMs, and elucidated the impacts of climate oscillations and environmental heterogeneity on their population demography. Our results indicate there were mixed genetic structure and asymmetric contemporary gene flow within them. The ENMs revealed a similar demographic history for the three species expanded their ranges from the last interglacial (LIG to the last glacial maximum (LGM, which was consistent with effective population sizes changes. Effects of genetic drift and fragmentation of habitats were responsible for the high differentiation and the lack of phylogeographic structure. Our results support that geological and climatic factors since Miocene triggered the differentiation, evolutionary origin and range shifts of the three oak species in the studied area and also emphasize that a multidisciplinary approach combining molecular markers, ENMs and population genetics can yield deep insights into diversification and evolutionary dynamics of species.

  20. Genetic Structure and Evolutionary History of Three Alpine Sclerophyllous Oaks in East Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains and Adjacent Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Li; Zheng, Qi-Jian; Qian, Zeng-Qiang; Yang, Jia; Zhang, Yan-Ping; Li, Zhong-Hu; Zhao, Gui-Fang

    2016-01-01

    The East Himalaya-Hengduan Mountains (EH-HM) region has a high biodiversity and harbors numerous endemic alpine plants. This is probably the result of combined orographic and climate oscillations occurring since late Tertiary. Here, we determined the genetic structure and evolutionary history of alpine oak species (including Quercus spinosa, Quercus aquifolioides , and Quercus rehderiana ) using both cytoplasmic-nuclear markers and ecological niche models (ENMs), and elucidated the impacts of climate oscillations and environmental heterogeneity on their population demography. Our results indicate there were mixed genetic structure and asymmetric contemporary gene flow within them. The ENMs revealed a similar demographic history for the three species expanded their ranges from the last interglacial (LIG) to the last glacial maximum (LGM), which was consistent with effective population sizes changes. Effects of genetic drift and fragmentation of habitats were responsible for the high differentiation and the lack of phylogeographic structure. Our results support that geological and climatic factors since Miocene triggered the differentiation, evolutionary origin and range shifts of the three oak species in the studied area and also emphasize that a multidisciplinary approach combining molecular markers, ENMs and population genetics can yield deep insights into diversification and evolutionary dynamics of species.

  1. Iron content and solubility in dust from high-alpine snow along a north-south transect of High Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guangjian Wu

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available This study describes the dissolved and insoluble iron fraction of dust (mineral aerosol in high-alpine snow samples collected along a north-south transect across High Asia (Eastern Tien Shan, Qilian Shan, and Southern Tibetan Plateau. This dust provides the basic chemical properties of mid- and high-level tropospheric Asian dust that can supply the limiting iron nutrient for phytoplankton growth in the North Pacific. The iron content in Asian dust averages 4.95% in Eastern Tien Shan, 3.38–5.41% along Qilian Shan and 3.85% in the Southern Tibetan Plateau. The iron fractional solubility averages about 0.25% in Eastern Tien Shan, 0.05–2% along Qilian Shan and 1.5% in the Southern Tibetan Plateau. Among the controlling factors that can affect iron solubility in Asian dust, such as dust composition and particle grain size, acidity seems to be the most significant and can increase the iron solubility by one or two orders of magnitude with acidification of pH=0.66. Our results reveal that iron solubility of dust in the remote downwind sites is higher than that in high-alpine snow, confirming the strong pH-dependence of iron solubility, and indicating that Asian dust shows a large variation in iron solubility on a regional scale.

  2. Temperature-driven flower longevity in a high-alpine species of Oxalis influences reproductive assurance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arroyo, Mary T K; Dudley, Leah S; Jespersen, Gus; Pacheco, Diego A; Cavieres, Lohengrin A

    2013-12-01

    How high-alpine plants confront stochastic conditions for animal pollination is a critical question. We investigated the effect of temperature on potential flower longevity (FL) measured in pollinator-excluded flowers and actual FL measured in pollinated flowers in self-incompatible Oxalis compacta and evaluated if plastically prolonged potential FL can ameliorate slow pollination under cool conditions. Pollinator-excluded and hand-pollinated flowers were experimentally warmed with open-top chambers (OTCs) on a site at 3470 m above sea level (asl). Flower-specific temperatures, and pollinator-excluded and open-pollination flower life-spans were measured at six alpine sites between 3100 and 3470 m asl. Fruit set was analyzed in relation to inferred pollination time. Warming reduced potential FL. Variable thermal conditions across the alpine landscape predicted potential and actual FL; flower senescence was pollination-regulated. Actual FL and potential FL were coupled. Prolonged potential FL generally increased fruit set under cooler conditions. Plastic responses permit virgin flowers of O. compacta to remain open longer under cooler temperatures, thereby ameliorating slow pollination, and to close earlier when pollination tends to be faster under warmer conditions. Plastic potential FL provides adaptive advantages in the cold, thermally variable alpine habitat, and has important implications for reproductive success in alpine plants in a warming world. © 2013 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2013 New Phytologist Trust.

  3. Household carbon dioxide emissions from peasants and herdsmen in northwestern arid-alpine regions, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qu, Jiansheng; Zeng, Jingjing; Li, Yan; Wang, Qin; Maraseni, Tek; Zhang, Lihua; Zhang, Zhiqiang; Clarke-Sather, Abigail

    2013-01-01

    This study assessed household CO 2 emissions (related to the consumption of necessary and luxury goods and services) of peasants and herdsmen households in arid-alpine regions in Gansu, Qinghai and Ningxia provinces, China. We also explored whether agriculture types, family income and family size have played any role in household CO 2 emissions. In order to address these issues, we: (i) developed assessment indicators for household emissions; (ii) conducted semi-structured questionnaire household surveys; and (iii) employed input-output analysis (IOA). The results showed that, the average household CO 2 emission per capita is 1.43 tons (t) CO 2 ; the proportion of subsistence emissions (related to the consumption of necessary goods and services) accounts for 93.24%, whereas luxury emissions (generated due to consumption of specific goods and services that are consumed only when household income improves) only account for 6.76%t. Moreover, household CO 2 emissions increase with family income and family size, but per capita emissions are inversely related to family size. The highest average household emissions were found in the alpine agricultural and pastoral region (6.18 t CO 2 ), followed by the irrigated agricultural region (6.07 t CO 2 ) and the rain-fed agricultural region (5.34 t CO 2 ). In consideration of insignificant amount of household emissions from these poor and vulnerable groups of the society, this study suggests to follow the principle of fairness while making energy conservation, emission reduction and adaptation policies. - Highlights: ► Per capita emissions decrease as the household size increases. ► The subsistence emissions accounts for 93.24% of the total emissions. ► If heating related emissions are excluded, household emissions are negligible. ► The reduction of emissions below current levels is almost impossible. ► Poor and vulnerable groups should be given special consideration

  4. A deposition record of inorganic ions from a high-alpine glacier

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huber, T. [Bern Univ. (Switzerland); Bruetsch, S.; Gaeggeler, H.W.; Schotterer, U.; Schwikowski, M. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1997-09-01

    The lowest five metres of an ice core from a high-alpine glacier (Colle Gnifetti, Monte Rosa massif, 4450m a.s.l., Switzerland) were analysed for ammonium, calcium, chloride, magnesium, nitrate, potassium, sodium, and sulphate by ion chromatography. (author) 1 fig., 3 refs.

  5. Exploring the Potential of Aerial Photogrammetry for 3d Modelling of High-Alpine Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legat, K.; Moe, K.; Poli, D.; Bollmannb, E.

    2016-03-01

    High-alpine areas are subject to rapid topographic changes, mainly caused by natural processes like glacial retreat and other geomorphological processes, and also due to anthropogenic interventions like construction of slopes and infrastructure in skiing resorts. Consequently, the demand for highly accurate digital terrain models (DTMs) in alpine environments has arisen. Public administrations often have dedicated resources for the regular monitoring of glaciers and natural hazard processes. In case of glaciers, traditional monitoring encompasses in-situ measurements of area and length and the estimation of volume and mass changes. Next to field measurements, data for such monitoring programs can be derived from DTMs and digital ortho photos (DOPs). Skiing resorts, on the other hand, require DTMs as input for planning and - more recently - for RTK-GNSS supported ski-slope grooming. Although different in scope, the demand of both user groups is similar: high-quality and up-to-date terrain data for extended areas often characterised by difficult accessibility and large elevation ranges. Over the last two decades, airborne laser scanning (ALS) has replaced photogrammetric approaches as state-of-the-art technology for the acquisition of high-resolution DTMs also in alpine environments. Reasons include the higher productivity compared to (manual) stereo-photogrammetric measurements, canopy-penetration capability, and limitations of photo measurements on sparsely textured surfaces like snow or ice. Nevertheless, the last few years have shown strong technological advances in the field of aerial camera technology, image processing and photogrammetric software which led to new possibilities for image-based DTM generation even in alpine terrain. At Vermessung AVT, an Austrian-based surveying company, and its subsidiary Terra Messflug, very promising results have been achieved for various projects in high-alpine environments, using images acquired by large-format digital

  6. Ecological half-life of 137Cs in lichens in an alpine region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machart, Peter; Hofmann, Werner; Türk, Roman; Steger, Ferdinand

    2007-01-01

    About 17 years after the Chernobyl accident, lichen samples were collected in an alpine region in Austria (Bad Gastein), which was heavily contaminated by the Chernobyl fallout. Measured 137Cs activity concentrations in selected lichens (Cetraria islandica, Cetraria cucullata, and Cladonia arbuscula) ranged from 100 to 1100 Bq kg(-1) dry weight, depending on lichen species and sampling site. Ecological half-lives for 137Cs in different lichen samples, obtained by comparison with earlier measurements of the same lichen species at the same site, ranged from 2 to 6 years, with average values between 3 and 4 years. Comparison with earlier studies indicated that ecological half-lives hardly changed during the last 10 years, suggesting that ecological clearance mechanisms (e.g. washout or soil transfer) did not vary substantially at the selected sampling area.

  7. Ecological half-life of 137Cs in lichens in an alpine region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Machart, Peter; Hofmann, Werner; Tuerk, Roman; Steger, Ferdinand

    2007-01-01

    About 17 years after the Chernobyl accident, lichen samples were collected in an alpine region in Austria (Bad Gastein), which was heavily contaminated by the Chernobyl fallout. Measured 137 Cs activity concentrations in selected lichens (Cetraria islandica, Cetraria cucullata, and Cladonia arbuscula) ranged from 100 to 1100 Bq kg -1 dry weight, depending on lichen species and sampling site. Ecological half-lives for 137 Cs in different lichen samples, obtained by comparison with earlier measurements of the same lichen species at the same site, ranged from 2 to 6 years, with average values between 3 and 4 years. Comparison with earlier studies indicated that ecological half-lives hardly changed during the last 10 years, suggesting that ecological clearance mechanisms (e.g. washout or soil transfer) did not vary substantially at the selected sampling area

  8. Alpine snow cover in a changing climate: a regional climate model perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steger, Christian; Kotlarski, Sven; Jonas, Tobias; Schär, Christoph

    2013-08-01

    An analysis is presented of an ensemble of regional climate model (RCM) experiments from the ENSEMBLES project in terms of mean winter snow water equivalent (SWE), the seasonal evolution of snow cover, and the duration of the continuous snow cover season in the European Alps. Two sets of simulations are considered, one driven by GCMs assuming the SRES A1B greenhouse gas scenario for the period 1951-2099, and the other by the ERA-40 reanalysis for the recent past. The simulated SWE for Switzerland for the winters 1971-2000 is validated against an observational data set derived from daily snow depth measurements. Model validation shows that the RCMs are capable of simulating the general spatial and seasonal variability of Alpine snow cover, but generally underestimate snow at elevations below 1,000 m and overestimate snow above 1,500 m. Model biases in snow cover can partly be related to biases in the atmospheric forcing. The analysis of climate projections for the twenty first century reveals high inter-model agreement on the following points: The strongest relative reduction in winter mean SWE is found below 1,500 m, amounting to 40-80 % by mid century relative to 1971-2000 and depending upon the model considered. At these elevations, mean winter temperatures are close to the melting point. At higher elevations the decrease of mean winter SWE is less pronounced but still a robust feature. For instance, at elevations of 2,000-2,500 m, SWE reductions amount to 10-60 % by mid century and to 30-80 % by the end of the century. The duration of the continuous snow cover season shows an asymmetric reduction with strongest shortening in springtime when ablation is the dominant factor for changes in SWE. We also find a substantial ensemble-mean reduction of snow reliability relevant to winter tourism at elevations below about 1,800 m by mid century, and at elevations below about 2,000 m by the end of the century.

  9. Climate change scenarios and key climate indices in the Swiss Alpine region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zubler, Elias; Croci-Maspoli, Mischa; Frei, Christoph; Liniger, Mark; Scherrer, Simon; Appenzeller, Christof

    2013-04-01

    For climate adaption and to support climate mitigation policy it is of outermost importance to demonstrate the consequences of climate change on a local level and in user oriented quantities. Here, a framework is presented to apply the Swiss national climate change scenarios CH2011 to climate indices with direct relevance to applications, such as tourism, transportation, agriculture and health. This framework provides results on a high spatial and temporal resolution and can also be applied in mountainous regions such as the Alps. Results are shown for some key indices, such as the number of summer days and tropical nights, growing season length, number of frost days, heating and cooling degree days, and the number of days with fresh snow. Particular focus is given to changes in the vertical distribution for the future periods 2020-2049, 2045-2074 and 2070-2099 relative to the reference period 1980-2009 for the A1B, A2 and RCP3PD scenario. The number of days with fresh snow is approximated using a combination of temperature and precipitation as proxies. Some findings for the latest scenario period are: (1) a doubling of the number of summer days by the end of the century under the business-as-usual scenario A2, (2) tropical nights appear above 1500 m asl, (3) the number of frost days may be reduced by more than 3 months at altitudes higher than 2500 m, (4) an overall reduction of heating degree days of about 30% by the end of the century, but on the other hand an increase in cooling degree days in warm seasons, and (5) the number of days with fresh snow tends to go towards zero at low altitudes. In winter, there is little change in snowfall above 2000 m asl (roughly -3 days) in all scenarios. The largest impact on snowfall is found along the Northern Alpine flank and the Jura (-10 days or roughly -50% in A1B for the winter season). It is also highlighted that the future projections for all indices strongly depend on the chosen scenario and on model uncertainty

  10. Investigation on the geographical distribution and life form of plant species in sub alpine zone Karsanak region, Shahrekord

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jahanbakhsh Pairanj

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available This study was carried out in rangelands of Karsanak, Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari province, which is regarded as one of the rich rangelands. Phytogeographically, this region is located in Irano-Turanian (zone of sub alpine. Endemic and rare plants were identified and geographical distribution and life form of identified plant species were investigated as well. Overall, 100 species from 17 families were identified from which 20 percent of identified species was endemic element of Irano-Turanian region. Results indicated that 75.7 percent of identified plants belonged to the Irano-Turanian and only 3 and 2 percent belonged to Euro-Siberian and Mediterranean regions respectively. The reason of high percentage of Irano-Turanian elements is probably the long distance of this region from other regions. Similarities of Irano-Turanian and Mediterranean were included 6.1 percent of identified plants and Irano-Turanian and Euro-Siberian included 2 percent. Results of life forms showed hemichryptophytes including 60 percent of life forms which indicate the cold and mountainous weather.

  11. Novel sampling methods for atmospheric semi-volatile organic compounds (SOCs) in a high altitude alpine environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Offenthaler, I; Jakobi, G; Kaiser, A; Kirchner, M; Kräuchi, N; Niedermoser, B; Schramm, K-W; Sedivy, I; Staudinger, M; Thanner, G; Weiss, P; Moche, W

    2009-12-01

    High- and low-volume active air samplers as well as bulk deposition samplers were developed to sample atmospheric SOCs under the adverse conditions of a mountain environment. Active sampling employed separate filters for different European source regions. Filters were switched depending on daily trajectory forecasts, whose accuracy was evaluated post hoc. The sampling continued on three alpine summits over five periods of four months. The prevailing trajectories varied stronger between sampling periods than between stations. The sampling equipment (active and bulk deposition) proved dependable for operation in a mountain environment, with idle times being mainly due to non-routine manipulations and connectivity.

  12. Influential factors on debris flow events and hillslope-channel connectivity in Alpine regions: case studies from two Alpine regions in Styria, Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traper, Sandra; Pöppl, Ronald; Rascher, Eric; Sass, Oliver

    2016-04-01

    In recent times different types of natural disasters like debris flow events have attracted increasing attention worldwide, since they can cause great damage and loss of infrastructure or even lives is not unusual when it comes to such an event. The engagement with debris flows is especially important in mountainous areas like Austria, since Alpine regions have proved to be particularly prone to the often harmful consequences of such events because of increasing settlement of previously uninhabited regions. Due to those frequently damaging effects of debris flows, research on this kind of natural disaster often focuses on mitigation and recovery measures after an event and on how to restore the initial situation. However, a view on the situation of an area, where severe debris flows recently occurred and are well documented, before the actual event can aid in discovering important preparatory factors that contribute to initiating debris flows and hillslope-channel connectivity in the first place. Valuable insights into the functioning and preconditions of debris flows and their potential connectivity to the main channel can be gained. The study focuses on two geologically different areas in the Austrian Alps, which are both prone to debris flows and have experienced rather severe events recently. Based on data from debris flow events in two regions in Styria (Austria), the Kleinsölk and the Johnsbach valleys, the aim of the study is to identify factors which influence the development of debris flows and the potential of such debris flows to reach the main channel potentially clogging up the river (hillslope-channel connectivity). The degree of hillslope-channel coupling was verified in extensive TLS and ALS surveys, resulting in DEMs of different resolution and spatial extension. Those factors are obtained, analyzed and evaluated with DEM-based GIS- and statistical analyses. These include factors that are attributed to catchment topography, such as slope angle

  13. Area burned in alpine treeline ecotones reflects region-wide trends

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. Alina Cansler; Donald McKenzie; Charles B. Halpern

    2016-01-01

    The direct effects of climate change on alpine treeline ecotones – the transition zones between subalpine forest and non-forested alpine vegetation – have been studied extensively, but climate-induced changes in disturbance regimes have received less attention. To determine if recent increases in area burned extend to these higher-elevation landscapes, we analysed...

  14. Alpine Plant Monitoring for Global Climate Change; Analysis of the Four California GLORIA Target Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennis, A.; Westfall, R. D.; Millar, C. I.

    2007-12-01

    The Global Observation Research Initiative in Alpine Environments (GLORIA) is an international research project with the goal to assess climate-change impacts on vegetation in alpine environments worldwide. Standardized protocols direct selection of each node in the network, called a Target Region (TR), which consists of a set of four geographically proximal mountain summits at elevations extending from treeline to the nival zone. For each summit, GLORIA specifies a rigorous mapping and sampling design for data collection, with re-measurement intervals of five years. Whereas TRs have been installed in six continents, prior to 2004 none was completed in North America. In cooperation with the Consortium for Integrated Climate Research in Western Mountains (CIRMOUNT), California Native Plant Society, and the White Mountain Research Station, four TRs have been installed in California: two in the Sierra Nevada and two in the White Mountains. We present comparative results from analyses of baseline data across these four TRs. The number of species occurring in the northern Sierra (Tahoe) TR was 35 (16 not found in other TRs); in the central Sierra (Dunderberg) TR 65 species were found. In the White Mountains, 54 species were found on the granitic/volcanic soils TR and 46 (19 not found in other TRs) on the dolomitic soils TR. In all, we observed 83 species in the Sierra Nevada range TRs and 75 in the White Mountain TRs. Using a mixed model ANOVA of percent cover from summit-area-sections and quadrat data, we found primary differences to be among mountain ranges. Major soil differences (dolomite versus non-dolomite) also contribute to floristic differentiation. Aspect did not seem to contribute significantly to diversity either among or within target regions. Summit floras in each target region comprised groups of two distinct types of species: those with notably broad elevational ranges and those with narrow elevational ranges. The former we propose to be species that

  15. Climatic change of summer temperature and precipitation in the Alpine region - a statistical-dynamical assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heimann, D.; Sept, V.

    1998-12-01

    Climatic changes in the Alpine region due to increasing greenhouse gas concentrations are assessed by using statistical-dynamical downscaling. The downscaling procedure is applied to two 30-year periods (1971-2000 and 2071-2100, summer months only) of the output of a transient coupled ocean/atmosphere climate scenario simulation. The downscaling results for the present-day climate are in sufficient agreement with observations. The estimated regional climate change during the next 100 years shows a general warming. The mean summer temperatures increase by about 3 to more than 5 Kelvin. The most intense climatic warming is predicted in the western parts of the Alps. The amount of summer precipitation decreases in most parts of central Europe by more than 20 percent. Only over the Adriatic area and parts of eastern central Europe an increase in precipitation is simulated. The results are compared with observed trends and results of regional climate change simulations of other authors. The observed trends and the majority of the simulated trends agree with our results. However, there are also climate change estimates which completely contradict with ours. (orig.) 29 refs.

  16. Model-Based Attribution of High-Resolution Streamflow Trends in Two Alpine Basins of Western Austria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph Kormann

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Several trend studies have shown that hydrological conditions are changing considerably in the Alpine region. However, the reasons for these changes are only partially understood and trend analyses alone are not able to shed much light. Hydrological modelling is one possible way to identify the trend drivers, i.e., to attribute the detected streamflow trends, given that the model captures all important processes causing the trends. We modelled the hydrological conditions for two alpine catchments in western Austria (a large, mostly lower-altitude catchment with wide valley plains and a nested high-altitude, glaciated headwater catchment with the distributed, physically-oriented WaSiM-ETH model, which includes a dynamical glacier module. The model was calibrated in a transient mode, i.e., not only on several standard goodness measures and glacier extents, but also in such a way that the simulated streamflow trends fit with the observed ones during the investigation period 1980 to 2007. With this approach, it was possible to separate streamflow components, identify the trends of flow components, and study their relation to trends in atmospheric variables. In addition to trends in annual averages, highly resolved trends for each Julian day were derived, since they proved powerful in an earlier, data-based attribution study. We were able to show that annual and highly resolved trends can be modelled sufficiently well. The results provide a holistic, year-round picture of the drivers of alpine streamflow changes: Higher-altitude catchments are strongly affected by earlier firn melt and snowmelt in spring and increased ice melt throughout the ablation season. Changes in lower-altitude areas are mostly caused by earlier and lower snowmelt volumes. All highly resolved trends in streamflow and its components show an explicit similarity to the local temperature trends. Finally, results indicate that evapotranspiration has been increasing in the lower

  17. Climate Change in Alpine Regions - Regional Characteristics of a Global Phenomenon by the Example of Air Temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lang, Erich; Stary, Ulrike

    2017-04-01

    For nearly 50 years the Austrian Research Centre for Forests (BFW) has been engaged in research in the Alpine region recording measuring data at extreme sites. Data series of this duration provide already a good insight into the evolution of climate parameters. Extrapolations derived from it are suitable for comparison with results from climate change models or supplement them with regard to their informative value. This is useful because climate change models describe a simplified picture of reality based on the size of the data grid they use. Analysis of time series of two air temperature measuring stations in different torrent catchment areas indicate that 1) predictions of temperature rise for the Alpine region in Austria will have to be revised upwards, and 2) only looking at the data of seasons (or shorter time periods), reveals the real dramatic effect of climate change. Considering e.g. the annual average data of air temperature of the years 1969-2016 at the climate station "Fleissner" (altitude 1210m a.s.l; Upper Mölltal, Carinthia) a significant upward trend is visible. Using a linear smoothing function an increase of the average annual air temperature of about 2.2°C within 50 years emerges. The calculated temperature rise thus confirms the general fear of an increase of more than 2.0°C till the middle of the 21st century. Looking at the seasonal change of air temperature, significant positive trends are shown in all four seasons. But the level of the respective temperature increase varies considerably and indicates the highest increase in spring (+3.3°C), and the lowest one in autumn (+1.3°C, extrapolated for a time period of 50 years). The maximum increase of air temperature at the measuring station "Pumpenhaus" (altitude 980m a.s.l), which is situated in the "Karnische Alpen" in the south of Austria, is even stronger. From a time series of 28 years (with data recording starting in 1989) the maximum rise of temperature was 5.4°C detected for the

  18. The GRETA project: the contribution of near-surface geothermal energy for the energetic self-sufficiency of Alpine regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Casasso

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The Alpine regions are deeply involved in the challenge set by climate change, which is a threat for their environment and for important economic activities such as tourism. The heating and cooling of buildings account for a major share of the total primary energy consumption in Europe, and hence the energy policies should focus on this sector to achieve the greenhouse gas reduction targets set by international agreements. Geothermal heat pump is one of the least carbon-intensive technologies for the heating and cooling of buildings. It exploits the heat stored within the ground, a local renewable energy source which is widely available across the Alpine territory. Nevertheless, it has been little considered by European policies and cooperation projects. GRETA (near-surface Geothermal REsources in the Territory of the Alpine space is a cooperation project funded by the EU INTERREG-Alpine Space program, aiming at demonstrating the potential of shallow geothermal energy and to foster its integration into energy planning instruments. It started in December 2015 and will last three years, involving 12 partners from Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, and Slovenia. In this paper, the project is presented, along with the results of the first year of work.

  19. [The seroconversion of Chlamydia abortus in sheep from the region of Vorarlberg before and after Alpine pasturing].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumer, S; Moestl, K; Krametter-Froetscher, R; Hässig, M; Pospischil, A; Borel, N

    2012-01-01

    In total, 796 serum samples of sheep on commune alpine pastures in the region of Vorarlberg were investigated by a commercial ELISA kit for antibodies against Chlamydia abortus, the agent of ovine enzootic abortion. The aim of the study was to determine the seroprevalence within this region and to compare these results with the seroprevalence in the neighboring canton Graubünden as well as to obtain data on the seroconversion after alpine pasturing. Therefore, 421 samples were collected before and 375 samples after alpine pasturing, whereas corresponding serum samples were available from 359 sheep. Within the region of Vorarlberg, a mean seroprevalence of 9.2 % was calculated with a threshold of 60 %. Seroconversion for C. abortus occurred in 5.0 % of animals with corresponding serum samples. Seroprevalence values were comparable to Swiss regions with similar management systems, although the neighboring canton Graubünden is known to have a much more higher seroprevalence of 43 %. In conclusion, the traditional animal exchange between these two regions is not significantly favoring the spread of C. abortus.

  20. Alpine grassland soil organic carbon stock and its uncertainty in the three rivers source region of the Tibetan Plateau.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaofeng Chang

    Full Text Available Alpine grassland of the Tibetan Plateau is an important component of global soil organic carbon (SOC stocks, but insufficient field observations and large spatial heterogeneity leads to great uncertainty in their estimation. In the Three Rivers Source Region (TRSR, alpine grasslands account for more than 75% of the total area. However, the regional carbon (C stock estimate and their uncertainty have seldom been tested. Here we quantified the regional SOC stock and its uncertainty using 298 soil profiles surveyed from 35 sites across the TRSR during 2006-2008. We showed that the upper soil (0-30 cm depth in alpine grasslands of the TRSR stores 2.03 Pg C, with a 95% confidence interval ranging from 1.25 to 2.81 Pg C. Alpine meadow soils comprised 73% (i.e. 1.48 Pg C of the regional SOC estimate, but had the greatest uncertainty at 51%. The statistical power to detect a deviation of 10% uncertainty in grassland C stock was less than 0.50. The required sample size to detect this deviation at a power of 90% was about 6-7 times more than the number of sample sites surveyed. Comparison of our observed SOC density with the corresponding values from the dataset of Yang et al. indicates that these two datasets are comparable. The combined dataset did not reduce the uncertainty in the estimate of the regional grassland soil C stock. This result could be mainly explained by the underrepresentation of sampling sites in large areas with poor accessibility. Further research to improve the regional SOC stock estimate should optimize sampling strategy by considering the number of samples and their spatial distribution.

  1. Flash Flood Risk Perception in an Italian Alpine Region. From Research into Adaptive Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scolobig, A.; de Marchi, B.; Borga, M.

    2009-04-01

    Flash floods are characterised by short lead times and high levels of uncertainty. Adaptive strategies to face them need to take into account not only the physical characteristics of the hydro-geological phenomena, but also peoples' risk perceptions, attitudes and behaviours in case of an emergency. It is quite obvious that a precondition for an effective adaptation, e.g. in the case of a warning, is the awareness of being endangered. At the same time the perceptions of those at risk and their likely actions inform hazard warning strategies and recovery programmes following such events. Usually low risk awareness or "wrong perceptions" of the residents are considered among the causes of an inadequate preparedness or response to flash floods as well as a symptom of a scarce self-protection culture. In this paper we will focus on flood risk perception and on how research on this topic may contribute to design adaptive strategies and give inputs to flood policy decisions. We will report on a flood risk perception study of the population residing in four villages in an Italian Alpine Region (Trentino Alto-Adige), carried out between October 2005 and January 2006. A total of 400 standardised questionnaires were submitted to local residents by face to face interviews. The surveys were preceded by focus groups with officers from agencies in charge of flood risk management and semi-structured and in-depth interviews with policy, scientific and technical experts. Survey results indicated that people are not so worried about hydro-geological phenomena, and think that their community is more endangered than themselves. The knowledge of the territory and danger sources, the unpredictability of flash floods and the feeling of safety induced by structural devices are the main elements which make the difference in shaping residents' perceptions. The study also demonstrated a widespread lack of adoption of preparatory measures among residents, together with a general low

  2. MAPPING AND ASSESSING MULTIPLE ECOSYSTEM SERVICES IN AN ALPINE REGION: A STUDY IN TRENTINO, ITALY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Ferrari

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available This research aims to identify ecosystem services relevant for Trentino (a region in the Italian Alps, and to assess them through spatial indicators. 51 experts were involved in the identification of relevant ecosystem services and appropriate indicators to represent them. Indicators were computed using the database available at administrative level. Indicators represent the actual or the potential supply of ecosystem services, expressed in terms of either stock or flow. Moreover, indicators may refer to biophysical, economic or socio-cultural values. In total, the experts selected 25 ecosystem services and 57 assessment indicators. Accordingly, the selected indicators were mapped over different spatial units of ecosystem services representation, including land use and forest types. This research was the first attempt to assess a multiple set of ecosystem services for Trentino. The results provide new information that can be used to achieve the objectives of the EU Biodiversity Strategy by 2014. The proposed approach can be reasonably extended to other Alpine areas with similar morphology, land cover and land use.

  3. Water balance estimation in high Alpine terrain by combining distributed modeling and a neural network approach (Berchtesgaden Alps, Germany

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Kraller

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The water balance in high Alpine regions is often characterized by significant variation of meteorological variables in space and time, a complex hydrogeological situation and steep gradients. The system is even more complex when the rock composition is dominated by soluble limestone, because unknown underground flow conditions and flow directions lead to unknown storage quantities. Reliable distributed modeling cannot be implemented by traditional approaches due to unknown storage processes at local and catchment scale. We present an artificial neural network extension of a distributed hydrological model (WaSiM-ETH that allows to account for subsurface water transfer in a karstic environment. The extension was developed for the Alpine catchment of the river "Berchtesgadener Ache" (Berchtesgaden Alps, Germany, which is characterized by extreme topography and calcareous rocks. The model assumes porous conditions and does not account for karstic environments, resulting in systematic mismatch of modeled and measured runoff in discharge curves at the outlet points of neighboring high alpine subbasins. Various precipitation interpolation methods did not allow to explain systematic mismatches, and unknown subsurface hydrological processes were concluded as the underlying reason. We introduce a new method that allows to describe the unknown subsurface boundary fluxes, and account for them in the hydrological model. This is achieved by an artificial neural network approach (ANN, where four input variables are taken to calculate the unknown subsurface storage conditions. This was first developed for the high Alpine subbasin Königsseer Ache to improve the monthly water balance. We explicitly derive the algebraic transfer function of an artificial neural net to calculate the missing boundary fluxes. The result of the ANN is then implemented in the groundwater module of the hydrological model as boundary flux, and considered during the consecutive model

  4. Dense image matching of terrestrial imagery for deriving high-resolution topographic properties of vegetation locations in alpine terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederheiser, R.; Rutzinger, M.; Bremer, M.; Wichmann, V.

    2018-04-01

    The investigation of changes in spatial patterns of vegetation and identification of potential micro-refugia requires detailed topographic and terrain information. However, mapping alpine topography at very detailed scales is challenging due to limited accessibility of sites. Close-range sensing by photogrammetric dense matching approaches based on terrestrial images captured with hand-held cameras offers a light-weight and low-cost solution to retrieve high-resolution measurements even in steep terrain and at locations, which are difficult to access. We propose a novel approach for rapid capturing of terrestrial images and a highly automated processing chain for retrieving detailed dense point clouds for topographic modelling. For this study, we modelled 249 plot locations. For the analysis of vegetation distribution and location properties, topographic parameters, such as slope, aspect, and potential solar irradiation were derived by applying a multi-scale approach utilizing voxel grids and spherical neighbourhoods. The result is a micro-topography archive of 249 alpine locations that includes topographic parameters at multiple scales ready for biogeomorphological analysis. Compared with regional elevation models at larger scales and traditional 2D gridding approaches to create elevation models, we employ analyses in a fully 3D environment that yield much more detailed insights into interrelations between topographic parameters, such as potential solar irradiation, surface area, aspect and roughness.

  5. Strong Regionality and Dominance of Anaerobic Bacterial Taxa Characterize Diazotrophic Bacterial Communities of the Arcto-Alpine Plant Species Oxyria digyna and Saxifraga oppositifolia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Manoj; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Nissinen, Riitta

    2017-01-01

    Arctic and alpine biomes are most often strongly nitrogen-limited, and hence biological nitrogen fixation is a strong driver of these ecosystems. Both biomes are characterized by low temperatures and short growing seasons, but they differ in seasonality of solar radiation and in soil water balance due to underlying permafrost in the Arctic. Arcto-alpine plant species are well-adapted to the low temperatures that prevail in their habitats, and plant growth is mainly limited by the availability of nutrients, in particular nitrogen, due to slow mineralization. Nitrogen fixing bacteria are likely important for plant growth in these habitats, but very little is known of these bacteria or forces shaping their communities. In this study, we characterized the potential nitrogen fixing bacterial (PNFB) communities associated with two arcto-alpine pioneer plant species, Oxyria digyna (mountain sorrel) and Saxifraga oppositifolia (blue saxifrage), in three climate regions. Both of these plants readily colonize low nutrient mineral soils. Our goal was to investigate how climate (region) and, on the other hand, host plant and plant species shape these communities. To our knowledge, this is the first comprehensive study describing PNFB communities associated with pioneer plants in different arcto-alpine biomes. Replicate samples were taken from two arctic regions, Kilpisjärvi and Ny-Ålesund, and one alpine region, Mayrhofen. In these, the PNFB communities in the bulk and rhizosphere soils and the plant endospheres were characterized by nifH -targeted PCR and massive parallel sequencing. The data revealed strong effects of climatic region on the dominating nitrogen fixers. Specifically, nifH sequences related to Geobacter (δ- Proteobacteria ) were present in high relative abundances in the nitrogen-fixing communities in the Mayrhofen and Kilpisjärvi regions, while members of the Clostridiales prevailed in the Kilpisjärvi and Ny-Ålesund regions. The bulk and rhizosphere soil

  6. Strong Regionality and Dominance of Anaerobic Bacterial Taxa Characterize Diazotrophic Bacterial Communities of the Arcto-Alpine Plant Species Oxyria digyna and Saxifraga oppositifolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manoj Kumar

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Arctic and alpine biomes are most often strongly nitrogen-limited, and hence biological nitrogen fixation is a strong driver of these ecosystems. Both biomes are characterized by low temperatures and short growing seasons, but they differ in seasonality of solar radiation and in soil water balance due to underlying permafrost in the Arctic. Arcto-alpine plant species are well-adapted to the low temperatures that prevail in their habitats, and plant growth is mainly limited by the availability of nutrients, in particular nitrogen, due to slow mineralization. Nitrogen fixing bacteria are likely important for plant growth in these habitats, but very little is known of these bacteria or forces shaping their communities. In this study, we characterized the potential nitrogen fixing bacterial (PNFB communities associated with two arcto-alpine pioneer plant species, Oxyria digyna (mountain sorrel and Saxifraga oppositifolia (blue saxifrage, in three climate regions. Both of these plants readily colonize low nutrient mineral soils. Our goal was to investigate how climate (region and, on the other hand, host plant and plant species shape these communities. To our knowledge, this is the first comprehensive study describing PNFB communities associated with pioneer plants in different arcto-alpine biomes. Replicate samples were taken from two arctic regions, Kilpisjärvi and Ny-Ålesund, and one alpine region, Mayrhofen. In these, the PNFB communities in the bulk and rhizosphere soils and the plant endospheres were characterized by nifH-targeted PCR and massive parallel sequencing. The data revealed strong effects of climatic region on the dominating nitrogen fixers. Specifically, nifH sequences related to Geobacter (δ-Proteobacteria were present in high relative abundances in the nitrogen-fixing communities in the Mayrhofen and Kilpisjärvi regions, while members of the Clostridiales prevailed in the Kilpisjärvi and Ny-Ålesund regions. The bulk and

  7. High Performance Skiing. How to Become a Better Alpine Skier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yacenda, John

    This book is intended for people who desire to improve their skiing by exploring high performance techniques leading to: (1) more consistent performance; (2) less fatigue and more endurance; (3) greater strength and flexibility; (4) greater versatility; (5) greater confidence in all skiing conditions; and (6) the knowledge to participate in…

  8. Fragile areas in the Alpine region: a reading between innovation and marginality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federica Corrado

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available The paper proposes a reading and description of fragile Alpine areas that overturns the conventional standpoint, according to which marginality is often synonymous with handicap. The paper starts form a different point of view, able to recognize specific local potentialities that can still be activated with a specific creative effort. The reading regards fragile Alpine areas in the Provinces of Turin and Cuneo and is based on an empirical analysis of the actions underlying current micro-territorial innovative development trends.Cet article propose une lecture et une description des territoires alpins fragiles, en jetant un autre regard, où le concept de fragilité est associé à celui de handicap, c’est-à-dire un autre regard sur l’identification des potentiels locaux spécifiques qui peuvent être encore activés à travers une force créatrice propre aux Alpes. La lecture est effectuée en fonction des territoires alpins fragiles qui font partie des provinces de Turin et Coni et se base sur une analyse empirique des initiatives qui enclenchent en quelque façon des dynamiques micro-territoriales de développement innovant.

  9. Novel sampling methods for atmospheric semi-volatile organic compounds (SOCs) in a high altitude alpine environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Offenthaler, I. [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria); Jakobi, G. [Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen (German Research Centre for Environmental Health) (Germany); Kaiser, A. [ZAMG-Zentralanstalt fuer Meteorologie und Geo-dynamik (Austria); Kirchner, M. [Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen (German Research Centre for Environmental Health) (Germany); Kraeuchi, N. [WSL-Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (Switzerland); Niedermoser, B. [ZAMG-Zentralanstalt fuer Meteorologie und Geo-dynamik (Austria); Schramm, K.-W. [Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen (German Research Centre for Environmental Health) (Germany); Sedivy, I. [WSL-Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (Switzerland); Staudinger, M. [ZAMG-Zentralanstalt fuer Meteorologie und Geo-dynamik (Austria); Thanner, G.; Weiss, P. [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria); Moche, W., E-mail: wolfgang.moche@umweltbundesamt.a [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria)

    2009-12-15

    High- and low-volume active air samplers as well as bulk deposition samplers were developed to sample atmospheric SOCs under the adverse conditions of a mountain environment. Active sampling employed separate filters for different European source regions. Filters were switched depending on daily trajectory forecasts, whose accuracy was evaluated post hoc. The sampling continued on three alpine summits over five periods of four months. The prevailing trajectories varied stronger between sampling periods than between stations. The sampling equipment (active and bulk deposition) proved dependable for operation in a mountain environment, with idle times being mainly due to non-routine manipulations and connectivity. - Equipment for direction-specific air sampling and bulk deposition sampling in mountains was developed and tested.

  10. Alpine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.W. Rundel; C.I. Millar

    2016-01-01

    Alpine ecosystems are typically defined as those areas occurring above treeline, while recognizing that alpine ecosystems at a local scale may be found below this boundary for reasons including geology, geomorphology, and microclimate. The lower limit of the alpine ecosystems, the climatic treeline, varies with latitude across California, ranging from about 3500 m in...

  11. High resolution climate scenarios for snowmelt modelling in small alpine catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schirmer, M.; Peleg, N.; Burlando, P.; Jonas, T.

    2017-12-01

    Snow in the Alps is affected by climate change with regard to duration, timing and amount. This has implications with respect to important societal issues as drinking water supply or hydropower generation. In Switzerland, the latter received a lot of attention following the political decision to phase out of nuclear electricity production. An increasing number of authorization requests for small hydropower plants located in small alpine catchments was observed in the recent years. This situation generates ecological conflicts, while the expected climate change poses a threat to water availability thus putting at risk investments in such hydropower plants. Reliable high-resolution climate scenarios are thus required, which account for small-scale processes to achieve realistic predictions of snowmelt runoff and its variability in small alpine catchments. We therefore used a novel model chain by coupling a stochastic 2-dimensional weather generator (AWE-GEN-2d) with a state-of-the-art energy balance snow cover model (FSM). AWE-GEN-2d was applied to generate ensembles of climate variables at very fine temporal and spatial resolution, thus providing all climatic input variables required for the energy balance modelling. The land-surface model FSM was used to describe spatially variable snow cover accumulation and melt processes. The FSM was refined to allow applications at very high spatial resolution by specifically accounting for small-scale processes, such as a subgrid-parametrization of snow covered area or an improved representation of forest-snow processes. For the present study, the model chain was tested for current climate conditions using extensive observational dataset of different spatial and temporal coverage. Small-scale spatial processes such as elevation gradients or aspect differences in the snow distribution were evaluated using airborne LiDAR data. 40-year of monitoring data for snow water equivalent, snowmelt and snow-covered area for entire

  12. Experts’ Perceptions of the Effects of Forest Biomass Harvesting on Sustainability in the Alpine Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianluca Grilli

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Background and Purpose: In the EU political agenda, the use of forest biomass for energy has grown rapidly and significantly, in order to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions and reduce the energy dependence on fossil fuels of European member countries. The target of the EU climate and energy package is to raise the share of renewable energy consumption produced from renewable resources to 20% in 2020 (Directive 2009/28/EC. With regards to biomass energy, the supply of forest wood biomass is expected to rise by 45% (reference period: 2006-2020, in response to increasing demand for renewable sources. The increase of forest biomass supply could have both positive and negative effects on several forest ecosystem services (ESs and local development. These effects should be assessed in a proper manner and taken into account when formulating management strategies. The aim of the paper is to assess the environmental, economic and social sustainability of forest biomass harvesting for energy, using the Figure of Merit (FoM approach. Materials and Methods: Sustainability was assessed through a set of four indicators: two focused on experts’ opinions regarding the effects of forest biomass harvesting and the other two focused on the cost-benefit analysis (potential energy obtained and costs for wood chips. The research was developed through four case studies located in the Alpine Region. A semi-structured questionnaire was administered face-to-face to 32 selected experts. The perceived effects of forest biomass harvesting for energy on ESs and local development were evaluated by experts using a 5-point Likert scale (from “quite negative effect” to “quite positive effect”. Results: All experts agree that forest biomass harvesting has a positive effect on forest products provision and local economic development (employment of local workforce, local entrepreneurship and market diversification, while the effects on other ESs are controversial (e

  13. Analysis of Water Vapour Flux Between Alpine Wetlands Underlying the Surface and Atmosphere in the Source Region of the Yellow River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Y.; Wen, J.; Liu, R.; Wang, X.; JIA, D.

    2017-12-01

    Wetland underlying surface is sensitive to climate change. Analysis of the degree of coupling between wetlands and the atmosphere and a quantitative assessment of how environmental factors influence latent heat flux have considerable scientific significance. Previous studies, which focused on the forest, grassland and farmland ecosystems, lack research on the alpine wetlands. In addition, research on the environmental control mechanism of latent heat flux is still qualitative and lacks quantitative evaluations and calculations. Using data from the observational tests of the Maduo Observatory of Climate and Environment of the Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resource, CAS, from June 1 to August 31, 2014, this study analysed the time-varying characteristics and causes of the degree of coupling between alpine wetlands underlying surface and the atmosphere and quantitatively calculated the influences of different environmental factors (solar radiation and vapour pressure deficit) on latent heat flux. The results were as follows: Due to the diurnal variations of solar radiation and wind speed, the diurnal variations of the Ω factor present a trend in which the Ω factor are small in the morning and large in the evening. Due to the vegetation growing cycle, the seasonal variations of the Ω factor present a reverse "U" trend . These trends are similar to the diurnal and seasonal variations of the absolute control exercised by solar radiation over the latent heat flux. This conforms to omega theory. The values for average absolute atmospheric factor (surface factor or total ) control exercised by solar radiation and water vapour pressure are 0.20 (0.02 or 0.22 ) and 0.005 (-0.07 or -0.06) W·m-2·Pa-1, respectively.. Generally speaking, solar radiation and water vapour pressure deficit exert opposite forces on the latent heat flux. The average Ω factor is high during the vegetation growing season, with a value of 0.38, and the degree of coupling between the

  14. Study on Viscoelastic Deformation Monitoring Index of an RCC Gravity Dam in an Alpine Region Using Orthogonal Test Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaoying Huang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The main objective of this study is to present a method of determining viscoelastic deformation monitoring index of a Roller-compacted concrete (RCC gravity dam in an alpine region. By focusing on a modified deformation monitoring model considering frost heave and back analyzed mechanical parameters of the dam, the working state of viscoelasticity for the dam is illustrated followed by an investigation and designation of adverse load cases using orthogonal test method. Water pressure component is then calculated by finite element method, while temperature, time effect, and frost heave components are obtained through deformation statistical model considering frost heave. The viscoelastic deformation monitoring index is eventually determined by small probability and maximum entropy methods. The results show that (a with the abnormal probability 1% the dam deformation monitoring index for small probability and maximum entropy methods is 23.703 mm and 22.981 mm, respectively; thus the maximum measured displacement of the dam is less than deformation monitoring index, which indicates that the dam is currently in a state of safety operation and (b the obtained deformation monitoring index using orthogonal test method is more accurate due to the full consideration of more random factors; the method gained from this study will likely be of use to diagnose the working state for those RCC dams in alpine regions.

  15. Indicators for Alpine Pastures Multifunctional Use. The Case of Estates of the Regional Agricultural and Forestry Services Board of Lombardy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele Corti

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available 18 Alpine pastures (AP, in the alpine provinces of Lombardy managed by ERSAF (Regional Agricultural and Forestry Services Board of the Lombardy Region were investigated to understand how to plan their future. In order to assess their potential multifunctional use three macro functions were considered: 1 agricultural economy (dairy and meat products and agritourism services; 2 leisure and education (direct use of the land; 3 public goods conservation and production (rural heritage, social values, landscape and nature. For each macro function several aspects (three to four were identified. They were evaluated through operational criteria (three to nine based on quantitative or qualitative estimates, the former based on linear measures the latter on synthetic evaluations by a panel of experts. By summing up operational criteria scores and applying weighting coefficients an index was calculated for each pasture aspect. These indicators were then used for statistical analysis. Clusters and principal components analysis grouped the pastures into categories suitable for various functions (agritourism and/or agricultural production, ecotourism. Furthermore they highlighted weaknesses and opportunities of individual estates. Results show that multifunctional use indicators could help the management planning of AP pertaining to public land .

  16. Iron content and solubility in dust from high-alpine snow along a north-south transect of High Asia

    OpenAIRE

    Wu, Guangjian; Zhang, Chenglong; Li, Zhongqin; Zhang, Xuelei; Gao, Shaopeng

    2012-01-01

    This study describes the dissolved and insoluble iron fraction of dust (mineral aerosol) in high-alpine snow samples collected along a north-south transect across High Asia (Eastern Tien Shan, Qilian Shan, and Southern Tibetan Plateau). This dust provides the basic chemical properties of mid- and high-level tropospheric Asian dust that can supply the limiting iron nutrient for phytoplankton growth in the North Pacific. The iron content in Asian dust averages 4.95% in Eastern Tien Shan, 3.38–5...

  17. Stable isotopes (C, N, O, H) of feathers collected in an Italian alpine region, during postbreeding migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bontempo, Luana; Ceppa, Florencia; Pedrini, Paolo; Tenan, Simone; Camin, Federica

    2013-04-01

    Over the last 20 years the analysis of stable isotope ratios of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen and sulphur have gradually become a formidable tool for the animal ecologists (Hobson and Wassenaar, 1997; Marra et al., 1998; Inger and Bearhop, 2008). In particular many studies have been developed on tracking the movement and the diet of birds in time and space, fundamental to understanding their ecology, but also inherently difficult to determine. The aim of this study was to deepen the origin and behaviour of migratory bird species crossing the Trentino area, an Italian alpine region, during the post-nuptial migration period, and monitored by a long term study by ringing activities (Progetto Alpi, Pedrini et al. 2008). About 800 samples of feathers from 48 local bird species were collected during 2010 - 2012 years. Analysis of d13C, d15N, d18O and dD were performed on these samples using an Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer (IRMS) interfaced with an Elemental Analyser or a pyrolyser after a pre-treatment of the feathers (cleaning with diethyl ether:methanol 2:1, equilibration to ambient humitity for 4 days and, for d18O and dD a final drying step wth P2O5 for another 4 days). A first survey of the obtained data is presented in this work. As expected, the first statistical elaboration/'look' of them confirmed that 13C can be used to trace the importance of different carbon pools to a consumer (e.g. C3, C4 or CAM plants, marine algae) whereas d15N vary as a function of a variety of biological, geochemical and anthropogenic processes and is a very effective tracer of trophic level. In particular, it was interesting to note that the specie Loxia curvirostra showed particularly high d13C and low d15N values probably due to the eating of conifer seeds and whereas the specie Motacilla flava, that bases its diet primarily on worms and insects, presented high d15N values. On the other hand d18O values mainly depends by geographical/diet factors whereas dD values are

  18. Performance of complex snow cover descriptions in a distributed hydrological model system: A case study for the high Alpine terrain of the Berchtesgaden Alps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warscher, M; Strasser, U; Kraller, G; Marke, T; Franz, H; Kunstmann, H

    2013-05-01

    [1] Runoff generation in Alpine regions is typically affected by snow processes. Snow accumulation, storage, redistribution, and ablation control the availability of water. In this study, several robust parameterizations describing snow processes in Alpine environments were implemented in a fully distributed, physically based hydrological model. Snow cover development is simulated using different methods from a simple temperature index approach, followed by an energy balance scheme, to additionally accounting for gravitational and wind-driven lateral snow redistribution. Test site for the study is the Berchtesgaden National Park (Bavarian Alps, Germany) which is characterized by extreme topography and climate conditions. The performance of the model system in reproducing snow cover dynamics and resulting discharge generation is analyzed and validated via measurements of snow water equivalent and snow depth, satellite-based remote sensing data, and runoff gauge data. Model efficiency (the Nash-Sutcliffe coefficient) for simulated runoff increases from 0.57 to 0.68 in a high Alpine headwater catchment and from 0.62 to 0.64 in total with increasing snow model complexity. In particular, the results show that the introduction of the energy balance scheme reproduces daily fluctuations in the snowmelt rates that trace down to the channel stream. These daily cycles measured in snowmelt and resulting runoff rates could not be reproduced by using the temperature index approach. In addition, accounting for lateral snow transport changes the seasonal distribution of modeled snowmelt amounts, which leads to a higher accuracy in modeling runoff characteristics.

  19. High solar radiation hinders tree regeneration above the alpine treeline in northern Ecuador

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.; Geloof, van I.; Rietkerk, M.

    2007-01-01

    Many tropical alpine treelines lie below their climatic potential, because of natural or anthropogenic causes. Forest extension above the treeline depends on the ability of trees to establish in the alpine environment. This ability may be limited by different factors, such as low temperatures,

  20. High solar radiation hinders tree regeneration above the alpine treeline in northern Ecuador

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.Y.; Geloof, I. van; Rietkerk, M.G.

    2007-01-01

    Many tropical alpine treelines lie below their climatic potential, because of natural or anthropogenic causes. Forest extension above the treeline depends on the ability of trees to establish in the alpine environment. This ability may be limited by different factors, such as low

  1. Safe-site effects on rhizosphere bacterial communities in a high-altitude alpine environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciccazzo, Sonia; Esposito, Alfonso; Rolli, Eleonora; Zerbe, Stefan; Daffonchio, Daniele; Brusetti, Lorenzo

    2014-01-01

    The rhizosphere effect on bacterial communities associated with three floristic communities (RW, FI, and M sites) which differed for the developmental stages was studied in a high-altitude alpine ecosystem. RW site was an early developmental stage, FI was an intermediate stage, M was a later more matured stage. The N and C contents in the soils confirmed a different developmental stage with a kind of gradient from the unvegetated bare soil (BS) site through RW, FI up to M site. The floristic communities were composed of 21 pioneer plants belonging to 14 species. Automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis showed different bacterial genetic structures per each floristic consortium which differed also from the BS site. When plants of the same species occurred within the same site, almost all their bacterial communities clustered together exhibiting a plant species effect. Unifrac significance value (P floristic communities rhizospheres on their soil bacterial communities.

  2. Large-scale environmental controls on microbial biofilms in high-alpine streams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. J. Battin

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Glaciers are highly responsive to global warming and important agents of landscape heterogeneity. While it is well established that glacial ablation and snowmelt regulate stream discharge, linkage among streams and streamwater geochemistry, the controls of these factors on stream microbial biofilms remain insufficiently understood. We investigated glacial (metakryal, hypokryal, groundwater-fed (krenal and snow-fed (rhithral streams - all of them representative for alpine stream networks - and present evidence that these hydrologic and hydrogeochemical factors differentially affect sediment microbial biofilms. Average microbial biomass and bacterial carbon production were low in the glacial streams, whereas bacterial cell size, biomass, and carbon production were higher in the tributaries, most notably in the krenal stream. Whole-cell in situ fluorescence hybridization revealed reduced detection rates of the Eubacteria and higher abundance of α-Proteobacteria in the glacial stream, a pattern that most probably reflects the trophic status of this ecosystem. Our data suggest low flow during the onset of snowmelt and autumn as a short period (hot moment of favorable environmental conditions with pulsed inputs of allochthonous nitrate and dissolved organic carbon, and with disproportionately high microbial growth. Tributaries are relatively more constant and favorable environments than kryal streams, and serve as possible sources of microbes and organic matter to the main glacial channel during periods (e.g., snowmelt of elevated hydrologic linkage among streams. Ice and snow dynamics - and their impact on the amount and composition of dissolved organic matter - have a crucial impact on stream biofilms, and we thus need to consider microbes and critical hydrological episodes in future models of alpine stream communities.

  3. Investigating the Microscopic Location of Trace Elements in High-Alpine Glacier Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avak, Sven Erik; Birrer, Mario; Laurent, Oscar; Guillong, Marcel; Wälle, Markus; Jenk, Theo Manuel; Bartels-Rausch, Thorsten; Schwikowski, Margit; Eichler, Anja

    2017-04-01

    Past changes in atmospheric pollution can be reconstructed from high-alpine ice core trace element records (Schwikowski et al., 2004). Percolation of meltwater alters the information originally stored in these environmental archives. Eichler et al. (2001) suggested that the preservation of major ions with respect to meltwater percolation depends on their location in the crystal ice lattice, i.e. grain boundaries versus grain interiors. Other studies have also focused on the effect of meltwater on organic pollutant concentrations as well as on stable isotope profiles in ice cores, whereas no information exists about trace elements. Here, we investigate for the first time the effect of the microscopic location of anthropogenic, dust and volcanic related trace elements on the behavior during meltwater percolation by using two different approaches. On the one hand we assess the microscopic location of trace elements indirectly by analyzing trace element concentrations in a high-alpine ice core, which has been shown to be affected by an inflow of meltwater, using discrete inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Impurities located at grain boundaries are prone to be removed by meltwater and tend to be depleted in the affected section of the record whereas those incorporated into the ice interior are preserved and not disturbed in the record. In the second approach we work towards a direct quantification of differences in concentrations of trace elements between ice grain boundaries and grain interiors in samples both from unaffected and affected sections of this ice core. Therefore we use cryocell laser ablation (LA) ICP-MS, which is the method of choice for the direct in situ chemical analysis of trace elements at a sub-millimeter resolution in glacier ice (Reinhardt et al., 2001, Della Lunga et al., 2014, Sneed et al., 2015). We will present first results of both approaches with regard to the evaluation of the potential of trace elements as environmental

  4. Renewable Energy, Authenticity, and Tourism: Social Acceptance of Photovoltaic Installations in a Swiss Alpine Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annina Helena Michel

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available With the increasing emergence of renewable energy sites in Switzerland, new impacts on the landscape can be observed. Above the Alpine village of Bellwald, a pilot project testing avalanche barriers as a possible site for photovoltaic installations was inaugurated in 2012. This study focused on social aspects of the project and asked questions about local residents' and tourists' perceptions of and attitudes toward the installations. Its findings reveal that the new elements are not perceived as a drastic intrusion into the landscape, because the view was already affected by the avalanche barriers, which are accepted because of their vital protective function. No significant difference was found between residents' and tourists' evaluation of the new photovoltaic installations. However, different factors influenced the perceptions of these 2 groups. In both groups, conceptions related to place played an important role in the evaluation of possible photovoltaic sites.

  5. The influence of fine-scale habitat features on regional variation in population performance of alpine White-tailed Ptarmigan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fedy, B.; Martin, K.

    2011-01-01

    It is often assumed (explicitly or implicitly) that animals select habitat features to maximize fitness. However, there is often a mismatch between preferred habitats and indices of individual and population measures of performance. We examined the influence of fine-scale habitat selection on the overall population performance of the White-tailed Ptarmigan (Lagopus leucura), an alpine specialist, in two subdivided populations whose habitat patches are configured differently. The central region of Vancouver Island, Canada, has more continuous and larger habitat patches than the southern region. In 2003 and 2004, using paired logistic regression between used (n = 176) and available (n = 324) sites, we identified food availability, distance to standing water, and predator cover as preferred habitat components . We then quantified variation in population performance in the two regions in terms of sex ratio, age structure (n = 182 adults and yearlings), and reproductive success (n = 98 females) on the basis of 8 years of data (1995-1999, 2002-2004). Region strongly influenced females' breeding success, which, unsuccessful hens included, was consistently higher in the central region (n = 77 females) of the island than in the south (n = 21 females, P = 0.01). The central region also had a much higher proportion of successful hens (87%) than did the south (55%, P < 0.001). In light of our findings, we suggest that population performance is influenced by a combination of fine-scale habitat features and coarse-scale habitat configuration. ?? The Cooper Ornithological Society 2011.

  6. Bacterial GDGTs in Holocene sediments and catchment soils of a high Alpine lake: application of the MBT/CBT-paleothermometer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Niemann

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available A novel proxy for continental mean annual air temperature (MAAT and soil pH, the MBT/CBT-paleothermometer, is based on the temperature (T and pH-dependent distribution of specific bacterial membrane lipids (branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers – GDGTs in soil organic matter. Here, we tested the applicability of the MBT/CBT-paleothermometer to sediments from Lake Cadagno, a high Alpine lake in southern Switzerland with a small catchment of 2.4 km2. We analysed the distribution of bacterial GDGTs in catchment soils and in a radiocarbon-dated sediment core from the centre of the lake, covering the past 11 000 yr. The distribution of bacterial GDGTs in the catchment soils is very similar to that in the lake's surface sediments, indicating a common origin of the lipids. Consequently, their transfer from the soils into the sediment record seems undisturbed, probably without any significant alteration of their distribution through in situ production in the lake itself or early diagenesis of branched GDGTs. The MBT/CBT-inferred MAAT estimates from soils and surface sediments are in good agreement with instrumental values for the Lake Cadagno region (~0.5 °C. Moreover, downcore MBT/CBT-derived MAAT estimates match in timing and magnitude other proxy-based T reconstructions from nearby locations for the last two millennia. Major climate anomalies recorded by the MBT/CBT-paleothermometer are, for instance, the Little Ice Age (~14th to 19th century and the Medieval Warm Period (MWP, ~9th to 14th century. Together, our observations indicate the quantitative applicability of the MBT/CBT-paleothermometer to Lake Cadagno sediments. In addition to the MWP, our lacustrine paleo T record indicates Holocene warm phases at about 3, 5, 7 and 11 kyr before present, which agrees in timing with other records from both the Alps and the sub-polar North-East Atlantic Ocean. The good temporal match of the warm periods determined

  7. [Progresses of alpine treeline formation mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cong, Yu; He, Hong Shi; Gu, Xiao Nan; Xu, Wen Ru; Liu, Kai; Zong, Sheng Wei; Du, Hai Bo

    2016-09-01

    Alpine treelines represent one of the most distinct vegetation boundaries between canopy closed montane forest and treeless alpine vegetation. This transitional ecotone is highly sensitive to global and regional climate change and is considered as an ideal indicator of such changes. Treeline studies have evolved from morphological description to various hypotheses of treeline formation. Although individual hypothesis may provide reasonable explanation locally, a generalized hypothesis that is applicable on the global scale is still lacking. Temperature is considered the limited factor controlling the distribution of alpine treeline as low temperature restricts biochemical processes of tree growth. However, which particular biochemical processes are affected by low temperature remains unknown. This paper summarized the mechanisms of treeline formation with a focus on how low temperature affects photosynthesis characteristics, nutrient characteristics, non-structural carbohydrate (NSC) and antioxidant system. We also reviewed the key issues and future perspectives in treeline research.

  8. Correlation of the seasonal isotopic amplitude of precipitation with annual evaporation and altitude in alpine regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jódar, J.; Custodio, E.; Liotta, M.; Lambán, L.J.; Herrera, C.; Martos-Rosillo, S.; Sapriza, G.; Rigo, T.

    2016-01-01

    The time series of stable water isotope composition relative to IAEA-GNIP meteorological stations located in alpine zones are analyzed in order to study how the amplitude of the seasonal isotopic composition of precipitation (A_δ) varies along a vertical transect. A clear relationship between A_δ and local evaporation is obtained, with slopes of − 0.87 ‰/100 mm/yr and − 7.3 ‰/100 mm/yr for A_δ_"1_"8_O and A_δ_"2_H, respectively. When all sampling points of the vertical transect receive the same moisture sources, then a linear relationship between A_δ and elevation is obtained, with vertical gradients of 0.16 ‰/100 mm/yr and 1.46 ‰/100 mm/yr for A_δ_"1_"8_O and A_δ_"2_H, respectively. - Highlights: • Amplitude of seasonal isotopic composition of rainfall depends on local evaporation. • Isotopic amplitude depends on elevation if the air moisture sources are common. • Local evaporation is controlled by atmospheric local and synoptic conditions.

  9. Correlation of the seasonal isotopic amplitude of precipitation with annual evaporation and altitude in alpine regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jódar, J., E-mail: jjb.aquageo@gmail.com [Department of Civil Engineering and Environment, Technical University of Catalonia (UPC), Barcelona (Spain); Custodio, E., E-mail: emilio.custodio@upc.edu [Department of Civil Engineering and Environment, Technical University of Catalonia (UPC), Barcelona (Spain); Liotta, M., E-mail: marcello.liotta@unina2.it [Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Ambientali Biologiche e Farmaceutiche, Seconda Università di Napoli, Caserta (Italy); Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Sezione di Palermo, Palermo (Italy); Lambán, L.J., E-mail: javier.lamban@igme.es [Geological Institute of Spain (IGME) (Spain); Herrera, C., E-mail: cherrera@ucn.cl [Departamento de Ciencias Geológicas, Universidad Católica del Norte UCN, Antofagasta (Chile); Centro para el Desarrollo de Tecnologías de Explotación Sustentable de Recursos Hídricos en Zonas Áridas (CEITSAZA), Antofagasta (Chile); Martos-Rosillo, S., E-mail: s.martos@igme.es [Geological Institute of Spain (IGME) (Spain); Sapriza, G., E-mail: gsapriza@gmail.com [Departamento del Agua, Centro Universitario Región Litoral Norte, Universidad de la República del Uruguay, Salto (Uruguay); Rigo, T., E-mail: tomeur@meteo.cat [Meteorological Service of Catalonia, Barcelona (Spain)

    2016-04-15

    The time series of stable water isotope composition relative to IAEA-GNIP meteorological stations located in alpine zones are analyzed in order to study how the amplitude of the seasonal isotopic composition of precipitation (A{sub δ}) varies along a vertical transect. A clear relationship between A{sub δ} and local evaporation is obtained, with slopes of − 0.87 ‰/100 mm/yr and − 7.3 ‰/100 mm/yr for A{sub δ{sup 1}{sup 8}O} and A{sub δ{sup 2}H}, respectively. When all sampling points of the vertical transect receive the same moisture sources, then a linear relationship between A{sub δ} and elevation is obtained, with vertical gradients of 0.16 ‰/100 mm/yr and 1.46 ‰/100 mm/yr for A{sub δ{sup 1}{sup 8}O} and A{sub δ{sup 2}H}, respectively. - Highlights: • Amplitude of seasonal isotopic composition of rainfall depends on local evaporation. • Isotopic amplitude depends on elevation if the air moisture sources are common. • Local evaporation is controlled by atmospheric local and synoptic conditions.

  10. Residues of legacy organochlorine contaminants in the milk of Alpine and Saanen goats from the central region of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schettino, Beatriz; Gutiérrez, Rey; Ortiz, Rutilio; Vega, Salvador; Urban, Georgina; Ramírez, Acacia

    2013-08-01

    This study investigated a suite of legacy organochlorine contaminants in the milk of two breeds of goats raised in the central region of Mexico, where this agricultural production is of national (Mexican) economic importance. Forty milk samples from Alpine and Saanen goats were assessed. It was found that the concentrations of the majority of organochlorine pesticides in milk samples were lower than those stipulated in Mexican and international regulation. The values in both breeds of goat exceeded the upper permissible limits of Codex Alimentarius for delta hexachloro cyclohexane (HCH) (17.3 of samples of Saanen) and heptachlor plus heptachlor epoxide (50 % and 13 % of samples). It may be concluded that milk from these goat breeds from central Mexico showed some risks of contamination in certain times of the year (dry season). However, under further assessment and use of pesticides the goat's milk will likely be safe for human consumption and for use in products such as cheeses, regional candies and desserts (cajeta). In recent years, goat milk production has increased in the central regions and it is an economic alternative to milk from livestock. It is necessary to continue the monitoring of goat's milk to assess the presence and control of HCHs through best management practices.

  11. Activated Fraction Of Black Carbon By Cloud Droplets And Ice Crystals At The High Alpine Site Jungfraujoch (3580 m asl)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cozic, J.; Mertes, S. [IFT Leipzig (Georgia); Verheggen, B.; Petzold, A. [DLR, Oberpfaffenhofen (Georgia); Weingartner, E.; Baltensperger, U.

    2005-03-01

    Measurements of black carbon (BC) were made in winter and summer 2004 at the high Alpine site Jungfraujoch in order to study the activation of BC into cloud droplets and ice crystals. Main results showed that the activated fraction represents 61% in summer and that for a large temperature range between -25 C and 5 C, the activated BC fraction increases with increasing temperature and increasing liquid water content. (author)

  12. Alpine dams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Marnezy

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Les barrages-réservoirs de montagne ont été réalisés initialement dans les Alpes pour répondre à la demande d’énergie en période hivernale. Une certaine diversification des usages de l’eau s’est ensuite progressivement développée, en relation avec le développement touristique des collectivités locales. Aujourd’hui, la participation des ouvrages d’Électricité De France à la production de neige de culture représente une nouvelle étape. Dans les régions où les aménagements hydroélectriques sont nombreux, les besoins en eau pour la production de neige peuvent être résolus par prélèvements à partir des adductions EDF. Les gestionnaires de stations échappent ainsi aux inconvénients liés à la construction et à la gestion des « retenues collinaires ». Cette évolution, qui concerne déjà quelques régions alpines comme la haute Maurienne ou le Beaufortin, apparaît comme une forme renouvelée d’intégration territoriale de la ressource en eau.Mountain reservoirs were initially built in the Alps to meet energy needs in the winter. A certain diversification in the uses of water then gradually developed, related to tourism development in the local communities. Today, the use of facilities belonging to EDF (French Electricity Authority to provide water for winter resorts to make artificial snow represents a new phase. By taking water from EDF resources to supply snow-making equipment, resort managers are thus able to avoid the problems related to the construction and management of small headwater dams. This new orientation in the use of mountain water resources already affects a number of alpine regions such as the Upper Maurienne valley and Beaufortain massif and represents a renewed form of the territorial integration of water resources.

  13. Safe-Site Effects on Rhizosphere Bacterial Communities in a High-Altitude Alpine Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Ciccazzo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The rhizosphere effect on bacterial communities associated with three floristic communities (RW, FI, and M sites which differed for the developmental stages was studied in a high-altitude alpine ecosystem. RW site was an early developmental stage, FI was an intermediate stage, M was a later more matured stage. The N and C contents in the soils confirmed a different developmental stage with a kind of gradient from the unvegetated bare soil (BS site through RW, FI up to M site. The floristic communities were composed of 21 pioneer plants belonging to 14 species. Automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis showed different bacterial genetic structures per each floristic consortium which differed also from the BS site. When plants of the same species occurred within the same site, almost all their bacterial communities clustered together exhibiting a plant species effect. Unifrac significance value (P<0.05 on 16S rRNA gene diversity revealed significant differences (P<0.05 between BS site and the vegetated sites with a weak similarity to the RW site. The intermediate plant colonization stage FI did not differ significantly from the RW and the M vegetated sites. These results pointed out the effect of different floristic communities rhizospheres on their soil bacterial communities.

  14. High resolution forecast of heavy precipitation with Lokal Modell: analysis of two case studies in the Alpine area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Elementi

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Northern Italy is frequently affected by severe precipitation conditions often inducing flood events with associated loss of properties, damages and casualties. The capability of correctly forecast these events, strongly required for an efficient support to civil protection actions, is still nowadays a challenge. This difficulty is also related with the complex structure of the precipitation field in the Alpine area and, more generally, over the Italian territory. Recently a new generation of non-hydrostatic meteorological models, suitable to be used at very high spatial resolution, has been developed. In this paper the performance of the non-hydrostatic Lokal Modell developed by the COSMO Consortium, is analysed with regard to a couple of intense precipitation events occurred in the Piemonte region in Northern Italy. These events were selected among the reference cases of the Hydroptimet/INTERREG IIIB project. LM run at the operational resolution of 7km provides a good forecast of the general rain structure, with an unsatisfactory representation of the precipitation distribution across the mountain ranges. It is shown that the inclusion of the new prognostic equations for cloud ice, rain and snow produces a remarkable improvement, reducing the precipitation in the upwind side and extending the intense rainfall area to the downwind side. The unrealistic maxima are decreased towards observed values. The use of very high horizontal resolution (2.8 km improves the general shape of the precipitation field in the flat area of the Piemonte region but, keeping active the moist convection scheme, sparse and more intense rainfall peaks are produced. When convective precipitation is not parametrised but explicitly represented by the model, this negative effect is removed.

  15. The onset of alpine pastoral systems in the Eastern Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oeggl, Klaus; Festi, Daniela; Putzer, Andreas

    2015-04-01

    Since the discovery of the Neolithic glacier mummy "Ötzi" in the nival belt of the main Alpine ridge, the onset of alpine pasture is matter of a highly controversial debate both in archaeology and in palaeo-ecology of the Eastern Alps. The implication is that his sojourn in the high-altitudes of the Alps is considered to be connected with pastoral nomadism. Regrettably any archaeological evidence for the existence of such Neolithic alpine pastoral systems is missing up to now and the assumption is based on palynological data only. However, also the palynological record is ambiguous, because pasture indicators in the alpine regions react positive on grazing as well as on fertilization induced by a higher runoff of precipitation. Thus alpine pasture indicators reflect both grazing pressure and climatic change. Anyhow, alpine pastoral systems are a common practice in Alpine animal husbandry, but from an economic point of view such a seasonal vertical transhumance is costly. There are three main reasons for its practice: i) climatic, ii) economic (mainly in connection with population pressure or mining activities), and iii) cultural ideology. In this study we tested the above mentioned reasons in an interdisciplinary study on the beginning of pastoral activities in high altitudes in the central part of the Eastern Alps. This is conducted by palynological analyses of peat deposits situated in the vicinity of the timberline (1600 - 2400 m a.s.l.) combined with archaeological surveys. The investigated sites are located in traditional Alpine transhumance regions and aligned on a transect through the central part of the Eastern Alps. The studies reveal that grazing pressure is reflected since the Bronze Age, which is corroborated by archaeological findings in the vicinity of the investigated sites.

  16. Spatial distribution and environmental analysis of the alpine flora in the Pyrenees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Gómez

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available On the basis of the digital edition of the “Atlas of the vascular flora of the Pyrenees” (www.florapyrenaea. org, the alpine flora of this mountain range is delimited in order to know its diversity and the different patterns of its spatial distribution, along with some other environmental characteristics. The Pyrenean alpine flora is made up of 645 taxa (630 species and 15 subspecies. All the administrative regions harbour more than 60% of the alpine plants, with Catalonia and Aragon reaching the highest values (around 90%. Along the altitudinal gradient, the highest plant diversity is found between 2300 and 2600 m. a. s. l., although 25% of the total alpine flora goes beyond 3000 m. On the other hand, a remarkable number of alpine plants live in the lowlands, and thus more than 300 alpine plants can be found below 1500 m. The average altitude range of the alpine plants is 1369 m, 300 m wider than that observed for the whole Pyrenean flora. Life-forms, habitat distribution and habitat naturalness of alpine plants are significantly different from those of the whole Pyrenean flora. Distribution of abundance categories also shows values of rarity significantly lower among alpine plants than for the whole flora. More than half the Pyrenean endemic plants are present in the alpine flora. High diversity and wide ecological amplitude of the alpine flora must be taken into account either when considering vulnerability of alpine plants facing “global change” or when addressing conservation policies for the whole Pyrenees from a common perspective.

  17. Population demography of alpine butterflies: Boloria pales and Boloria napaea (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) and their specific adaptations to high mountain environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehl, Stefan; Ebertshäuser, Marlene; Gros, Patrick; Schmitt, Thomas

    2017-11-01

    High mountain ecosystems are extreme habitats, and adaptation strategies to this ecosystem are still poorly understood in most groups. To unravel such strategies, we performed a MRR study in the Hohe Tauern National Park (Salzburg, Austria) with two nymphalid butterfly species, Boloria pales and B. napaea. We analysed their population structure over one flight period by studying the development of population size and wing wear. B. pales had more individuals and a higher survival probability than B. napaea; the sensitivity to extreme weather conditions or other external influences was higher in B. napaea. We only observed proterandry in B. pales. Imagines of both species survived under snow for at least some days. Additionally, we observed a kind of risk-spreading, in that individuals of both species, and especially B. pales, have regularly emerged throughout the flight period. This emergence pattern divided the population's age structure into three phases: an initial phase with decreasing wing quality (emergence > mortality), followed by an equilibrium phase with mostly constant average wing condition (emergence = mortality) and a final ageing phase with strongly deteriorating wing condition (mortality » emergence). Consequently, neither species would likely become extinct because of particularly unsuitable weather conditions during a single flight period. The observed differences between the two species suggest a better regional adaptation of B. pales, which is restricted to high mountain systems of Europe. In contrast, the arctic-alpine B. napaea might be best adapted to conditions in the Arctic and not the more southern high mountain systems. However, this needs to be examined during future research in the Arctic.

  18. Abundance and potential metabolic activity of methanogens in well-aerated forest and grassland soils of an alpine region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofmann, Katrin; Praeg, Nadine; Mutschlechner, Mira; Wagner, Andreas O; Illmer, Paul

    2016-02-01

    Although methanogens were recently discovered to occur in aerated soils, alpine regions have not been extensively studied for their presence so far. Here, the abundance of archaea and the methanogenic guilds Methanosarcinales, Methanococcales, Methanobacteriales, Methanomicrobiales and Methanocella spp. was studied at 16 coniferous forest and 14 grassland sites located at the montane and subalpine belts of the Northern Limestone Alps (calcareous) and the Austrian Central Alps (siliceous) using quantitative real-time PCR. Abundance of archaea, methanogens and the methanogenic potentials were significantly higher in grasslands than in forests. Furthermore, methanogenic potentials of calcareous soils were higher due to pH. Methanococcales, Methanomicrobiales and Methanocella spp. were detected in all collected samples, which indicates that they are autochthonous, while Methanobacteriales were absent from 4 out of 16 forest soils. Methanosarcinales were absent from 10 out of 16 forest soils and 2 out of 14 grassland soils. Nevertheless, together with Methanococcales they represented the majority of the 16S rRNA gene copies quantified from the grassland soils. Contrarily, forest soils were clearly dominated by Methanococcales. Our results indicate a higher diversity of methanogens in well-aerated soils than previously believed and that pH mainly influences their abundances and activities. © FEMS 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Simulation of Wind-Driven Snow Redistribution at a High-Elevation Alpine Site Using a Meso-Scale Atmospheric Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vionnet, V.; Martin, E.; Masson, V.; Guyomarc'h, G.; Naaim-Bouvet, F.; Prokop, A.; Durand, Y.; Lac, C.

    2012-12-01

    In alpine regions, blowing snow events strongly influence the temporal and spatial evolution of the snow depth distribution throughout the winter season. We recently developed a new simulation system to gain understanding on the complex processes that drive the redistribution of snow by the wind in complex terrain. This new system couples directly the detailed snow-pack model Crocus with the meso-scale atmospheric model Meso-NH. A blowing snow scheme allows Meso-NH to simulate the transport of snow particles in the atmosphere. We used the coupled system to study a blowing snow event with snowfall that occurred in February 2011 in the Grandes Rousses range (French Alps). Three nested domains at an horizontal resolution of 450, 150 and 50 m allow the model to simulate the complex 3D precipitation and wind fields around our experimental site (2720 m a.s.l.) during this 22-hour event. Wind-induced snow transport is activated over the domains of higher resolution (150 and 50 m). We firstly assessed the ability of the model to reproduce atmospheric flows at high resolution in alpine terrain using a large dataset of observations (meteorological data, vertical profile of wind speed). Simulated blowing snow fluxes are then compared with measurements from SPC and mechanical snow traps. Finally a map of snow erosion and accumulation produced by Terrestrial Laser measurements allows to evaluate the quality of the simulated snow depth redistribution.

  20. Measured and predicted aerosol light scattering enhancement factors at the high alpine site Jungfraujoch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Fierz-Schmidhauser

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Ambient relative humidity (RH determines the water content of atmospheric aerosol particles and thus has an important influence on the amount of visible light scattered by particles. The RH dependence of the particle light scattering coefficient (σsp is therefore an important variable for climate forcing calculations. We used a humidification system for a nephelometer which allows for the measurement of σsp at a defined RH in the range of 20–95%. In this paper we present measurements of light scattering enhancement factors f(RH=σsp(RH/σsp(dry from a 1-month campaign (May 2008 at the high alpine site Jungfraujoch (3580 m a.s.l., Switzerland. Measurements at the Jungfraujoch are representative for the lower free troposphere above Central Europe. For this aerosol type hardly any information about the f(RH is available so far. At this site, f(RH=85% varied between 1.2 and 3.3. Measured f(RH agreed well with f(RH calculated with Mie theory using measurements of the size distribution, chemical composition and hygroscopic diameter growth factors as input. Good f(RH predictions at RH<85% were also obtained with a simplified model, which uses the Ångström exponent of σsp(dry as input. RH influences further intensive optical aerosol properties. The backscatter fraction decreased by about 30% from 0.128 to 0.089, and the single scattering albedo increased on average by 0.05 at 85% RH compared to dry conditions. These changes in σsp, backscatter fraction and single scattering albedo have a distinct impact on the radiative forcing of the Jungfraujoch aerosol.

  1. Pasture names with Romance and Slavic roots facilitate dissection of Y chromosome variation in an exclusively German-speaking alpine region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederstätter, Harald; Rampl, Gerhard; Erhart, Daniel; Pitterl, Florian; Oberacher, Herbert; Neuhuber, Franz; Hausner, Isolde; Gassner, Christoph; Schennach, Harald; Berger, Burkhard; Parson, Walther

    2012-01-01

    The small alpine district of East Tyrol (Austria) has an exceptional demographic history. It was contemporaneously inhabited by members of the Romance, the Slavic and the Germanic language groups for centuries. Since the Late Middle Ages, however, the population of the principally agrarian-oriented area is solely Germanic speaking. Historic facts about East Tyrol's colonization are rare, but spatial density-distribution analysis based on the etymology of place-names has facilitated accurate spatial mapping of the various language groups' former settlement regions. To test for present-day Y chromosome population substructure, molecular genetic data were compared to the information attained by the linguistic analysis of pasture names. The linguistic data were used for subdividing East Tyrol into two regions of former Romance (A) and Slavic (B) settlement. Samples from 270 East Tyrolean men were genotyped for 17 Y-chromosomal microsatellites (Y-STRs) and 27 single nucleotide polymorphisms (Y-SNPs). Analysis of the probands' surnames revealed no evidence for spatial genetic structuring. Also, spatial autocorrelation analysis did not indicate significant correlation between genetic (Y-STR haplotypes) and geographic distance. Haplogroup R-M17 chromosomes, however, were absent in region A, but constituted one of the most frequent haplogroups in region B. The R-M343 (R1b) clade showed a marked and complementary frequency distribution pattern in these two regions. To further test East Tyrol's modern Y-chromosomal landscape for geographic patterning attributable to the early history of settlement in this alpine area, principal coordinates analysis was performed. The Y-STR haplotypes from region A clearly clustered with those of Romance reference populations and the samples from region B matched best with Germanic speaking reference populations. The combined use of onomastic and molecular genetic data revealed and mapped the marked structuring of the distribution of Y

  2. Run-of-river power plants in Alpine regions: whither optimal capacity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazzaro, Gianluca; Botter, Gianluca

    2015-04-01

    Hydropower is the major renewable electricity generation technology worldwide. The future expansion of this technology mostly relies on the development of small run-of-river projects, in which a fraction of the running flows is diverted from the river to a turbine for energy production. Even though small hydro inflicts a smaller impact on aquatic ecosystems and local communities compared to large dams, it cannot prevent stresses on plant, animal, and human well-being. This is especially true in mountain regions where the plant outflow is located several kilometers downstream of the intake, thereby inducing the depletion of river reaches of considerable length. Moreover, the negative cumulative effects of run-of-river systems operating along the same river threaten the ability of stream networks to supply ecological corridors for plants, invertebrates or fishes, and support biodiversity. Research in this area is severely lacking. Therefore, the prediction of the long-term impacts associated to the expansion of run-of-river projects induced by global-scale incentive policies remains highly uncertain. This contribution aims at providing objective tools to address the preliminary choice of the capacity of a run-of-river hydropower plant when the economic value of the plant and the alteration of the flow regime are simultaneously accounted for. This is done using the concepts of Pareto-optimality and Pareto-dominance, which are powerful tools suited to face multi-objective optimization in presence of conflicting goals, such as the maximization of the profitability and the minimization of the hydrologic disturbance induced by the plant in the river reach between the intake and the outflow. The application to a set of case studies belonging to the Piave River basin (Italy) suggests that optimal solutions are strongly dependent the natural flow regime at the plant intake. While in some cases (namely, reduced streamflow variability) the optimal trade-off between economic

  3. Vicariance, long-distance dispersal, and regional extinction-recolonization dynamics explain the disjunct circumpolar distribution of the arctic-alpine plant Silene acaulis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gussarova, Galina; Allen, Geraldine A; Mikhaylova, Yulia; McCormick, Laurie J; Mirré, Virginia; Marr, Kendrick L; Hebda, Richard J; Brochmann, Christian

    2015-10-01

    Many arctic-alpine species have vast geographic ranges, but these may encompass substantial gaps whose origins are poorly understood. Here we address the phylogeographic history of Silene acaulis, a perennial cushion plant with a circumpolar distribution except for a large gap in Siberia. We assessed genetic variation in a range-wide sample of 103 populations using plastid DNA (pDNA) sequences and AFLPs (amplified fragment length polymorphisms). We constructed a haplotype network and performed Bayesian phylogenetic analyses based on plastid sequences. We visualized AFLP patterns using principal coordinate analysis, identified genetic groups using the program structure, and estimated genetic diversity and rarity indices by geographic region. The history of the main pDNA lineages was estimated to span several glaciations. AFLP data revealed a distinct division between Beringia/North America and Europe/East Greenland. These two regions shared only one of 17 pDNA haplotypes. Populations on opposite sides of the Siberian range gap (Ural Mountains and Chukotka) were genetically distinct and appear to have resulted from postglacial leading-edge colonizations. We inferred two refugia in North America (Beringia and the southern Rocky Mountains) and two in Europe (central-southern Europe and northern Europe/East Greenland). Patterns in the East Atlantic region suggested transoceanic long-distance dispersal events. Silene acaulis has a highly dynamic history characterized by vicariance, regional extinction, and recolonization, with persistence in at least four refugia. Long-distance dispersal explains patterns across the Atlantic Ocean, but we found no evidence of dispersal across the Siberian range gap. © 2015 Botanical Society of America.

  4. Sensitivity of Alpine Snow and Streamflow Regimes to Climate Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasouli, K.; Pomeroy, J. W.; Marks, D. G.; Bernhardt, M.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the sensitivity of hydrological processes to climate change in alpine areas with snow dominated regimes is of paramount importance as alpine basins show both high runoff efficiency associated with the melt of the seasonal snowpack and great sensitivity of snow processes to temperature change. In this study, meteorological data measured in a selection of alpine headwaters basins including Reynolds Mountain East, Idaho, USA, Wolf Creek, Yukon in Canada, and Zugspitze Mountain, Germany with climates ranging from arctic to continental temperate were used to study the snow and streamflow sensitivity to climate change. All research sites have detailed multi-decadal meteorological and snow measurements. The Cold Regions Hydrological Modelling platform (CRHM) was used to create a model representing a typical alpine headwater basin discretized into hydrological response units with physically based representations of snow redistribution by wind, complex terrain snowmelt energetics and runoff processes in alpine tundra. The sensitivity of snow hydrology to climate change was investigated by changing air temperature and precipitation using weather generating methods based on the change factors obtained from different climate model projections for future and current periods. The basin mean and spatial variability of peak snow water equivalent, sublimation loss, duration of snow season, snowmelt rates, streamflow peak, and basin discharge were assessed under varying climate scenarios and the most sensitive hydrological mechanisms to the changes in the different alpine climates were detected. The results show that snow hydrology in colder alpine climates is more resilient to warming than that in warmer climates, but that compensatory factors to warming such as reduced blowing snow sublimation loss and reduced melt rate should also be assessed when considering climate change impacts on alpine hydrology.

  5. Staying cool: preadaptation to temperate climates required for colonising tropical alpine-like environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Berit Gehrke

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Plant species tend to retain their ancestral ecology, responding to temporal, geographic and climatic changes by tracking suitable habitats rather than adapting to novel conditions. Nevertheless, transitions into different environments or biomes still seem to be common. Especially intriguing are the tropical alpine-like areas found on only the highest mountainous regions surrounded by tropical environments. Tropical mountains are hotspots of biodiversity, often with striking degrees of endemism at higher elevations. On these mountains, steep environmental gradients and high habitat heterogeneity within small spaces coincide with astounding species diversity of great conservation value. The analysis presented here shows that the importance of in situ speciation in tropical alpine-like areas has been underestimated. Additionally and contrary to widely held opinion, the impact of dispersal from other regions with alpine-like environments is relatively minor compared to that of immigration from other biomes with a temperate (but not alpine-like climate. This suggests that establishment in tropical alpine-like regions is favoured by preadaptation to a temperate, especially aseasonal, freezing regime such as the cool temperate climate regions in the Tropics. Furthermore, emigration out of an alpine-like environment is generally rare, suggesting that alpine-like environments – at least tropical ones – are species sinks.

  6. Geology and uranium favorability of the Sonora Pass region, Alpine and Tuolumne Counties, California

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rapp, J.S.; Short, W.O.

    1981-06-01

    Uranium mineralization at the Juniper Mine is restricted to host rocks of the Relief Peak Formation and is most common in coarse-grained lithic sandstone, conglomerate, and lithic wacke. The richest beds contain as much as 0.5% U/sub 3/O/sub 8/. Uranium is present as coffinite, uraninite, and unidentified minerals. Thorium/uranium ratios are generally low and erratic. Equivalent uranium determinations are low in comparison with chemical uranium values, indicating that uranium mineralization of the Juniper Mine is geologically young. Core drilling at 16 localities shows that widely separated exposures of the Relief Peak Formation have very similar lithology, geochemistry, and stratigraphy. Some sections are similar to the Juniper Mine section. Core from the bottom of drill hole SP-1 contains 83 ppM uranium, the greatest known concentration outside the mine area. Significant uranium deposits may be concealed beneath the thick Tertiary volcanic cover of the region. The quartz latitic Eureka Valley Tuff is fairly widespread in east-central California and western Nevada. It contains 12 to 14 ppM uranium and stratigraphically overlies the Relief Peak Formation. It is permeable and contains abundant alkali metals and volcanic glass. Because of its petrology, geochemistry, and position, this formation is the most likely source for uranium mineralization of the Sonora Pass region. It should be examined as a potential source rock in other areas with special regard to its relationship to carbonaceous sedimentary formations. The uraniferous granite pegmatitite dike that crops out in the Niagara Creek area appears too small to be a significant source rock. The most favorable rocks in the Sonora Pass region occur near the Juniper Mine and west of it, in the Dardanelles, the Whittakers Dardanelles, and the area of the Big Meadow Quadrangle. Potential uranium host rocks crop out in areas along the crest of the Sierra Nevada from Lake Tahoe to Yosemite.

  7. Geology and uranium favorability of the Sonora Pass region, Alpine and Tuolumne Counties, California

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rapp, J.S.; Short, W.O.

    1981-06-01

    Uranium mineralization at the Juniper Mine is restricted to host rocks of the Relief Peak Formation and is most common in coarse-grained lithic sandstone, conglomerate, and lithic wacke. The richest beds contain as much as 0.5% U 3 O 8 . Uranium is present as coffinite, uraninite, and unidentified minerals. Thorium/uranium ratios are generally low and erratic. Equivalent uranium determinations are low in comparison with chemical uranium values, indicating that uranium mineralization of the Juniper Mine is geologically young. Core drilling at 16 localities shows that widely separated exposures of the Relief Peak Formation have very similar lithology, geochemistry, and stratigraphy. Some sections are similar to the Juniper Mine section. Core from the bottom of drill hole SP-1 contains 83 ppM uranium, the greatest known concentration outside the mine area. Significant uranium deposits may be concealed beneath the thick Tertiary volcanic cover of the region. The quartz latitic Eureka Valley Tuff is fairly widespread in east-central California and western Nevada. It contains 12 to 14 ppM uranium and stratigraphically overlies the Relief Peak Formation. It is permeable and contains abundant alkali metals and volcanic glass. Because of its petrology, geochemistry, and position, this formation is the most likely source for uranium mineralization of the Sonora Pass region. It should be examined as a potential source rock in other areas with special regard to its relationship to carbonaceous sedimentary formations. The uraniferous granite pegmatitite dike that crops out in the Niagara Creek area appears too small to be a significant source rock. The most favorable rocks in the Sonora Pass region occur near the Juniper Mine and west of it, in the Dardanelles, the Whittakers Dardanelles, and the area of the Big Meadow Quadrangle. Potential uranium host rocks crop out in areas along the crest of the Sierra Nevada from Lake Tahoe to Yosemite

  8. Simulations of a November thunderstorm event by two mesoscale models in the south Alpine region

    OpenAIRE

    Borroni, A.

    2005-01-01

    Abstract: Two numerical models have been used to investigate the development of a thunderstorm event that took place on November 7th , 2004, in the northern Italy. A cold air mass moved from the northeast to the Alps and the Po valley, while the temperature in the lower layers was quite warm. A thunderstorm with rain and hail developed in the central and eastern part of Italy's subalpine region. In this work it's analyzed some aspects of the thunderstorm dynamics at the mesoscale using two di...

  9. Alpine tourism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Macchiavelli

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available The spectacular increase in tourism in the Alps in recent decades has been founded mainly on the boom in skiing, resulting in both strong real estate development and an increasing array of infrastructures and ski runs. Today the ski market seems to have virtually reached saturation point and the winter sports sector needs to diversify its offer through innovation. After a review of the main factors of change in mountain tourism, the paper presents a grid for interpreting the life cycle of alpine destinations, identifying the phases that characterize their evolution. The conditions that may favour innovation in alpine tourism are then identified, as well as the contradictions that frequently accompany them. In most cases, innovation is the result of a process that begins within the alpine community, frequently encouraged and supported by national and international institutions and with whose help structural difficulties are successfully overcome.La forte croissance qu’ont connue les pays alpins dans les dernières décennies a surtout été fondée sur l’offre des activités du ski, avec comme conséquence, un massif développement immobilier et la multiplication d’infrastructures et de pistes. Aujourd’hui, le marché du ski semble arriver à saturation, la Convention alpine a mis un frein à la poursuite du développement des domaines skiables et on observe donc avec intérêt la diversification de l’offre soutenue par l’innovation. Après avoir rappelé les facteurs de changement en cours les plus significatifs dans le tourisme montagnard, l’article présente une grille interprétative de l’évolution des destinations touristiques alpines, identifiant les phases qui ont caractérisé son développement. Ensuite, l’article propose une réflexion sur certaines conditions qui peuvent favoriser l’innovation dans le tourisme alpin, ainsi que sur les contradictions qui accompagnent souvent ces conditions. Dans la plupart des cas

  10. Radon risk in Alpine regions in Austria: Risk assessment as a settlement planning strategy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gruber, V.; Baumgartner, A.; Seidel, C.; Maringer, F. J.

    2008-01-01

    Soil gas radon measurements complement indispensable and well-established radon indoor measurements in Austria. Radon in soil gas is a result of geochemical conditions as well as of geology, mineralogy, geophysics and meteorology. Therefore, geological factors can help to predict potential indoor radon concentrations via soil gas. Soil gas radon measurements in well-defined geological units give an estimate of local and regional radon hazards and build the basis for radon risk maps, which could be used for land-use planning and urban development. The creation of maps makes an important contribution to health care. For this purpose, several research projects were carried out in Austria. On the one hand, a study was already conducted in Lower Austria to determine the influence of meteorological and soil physical parameters on radon concentrations in soil gas and to evaluate soil gas radon concentrations with a radon emanation and migration model. On the other hand, radon measurements on different geomorphologic formations in the Austrian Alps, which are potential settlement areas, are of special interest. (authors)

  11. Inferring the colonization of a mountain range--refugia vs. nunatak survival in high alpine ground beetles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohse, Konrad; Nicholls, James A; Stone, Graham N

    2011-01-01

    It has long been debated whether high alpine specialists survived ice ages in situ on small ice-free islands of habitat, so-called nunataks, or whether glacial survival was restricted to larger massifs de refuge at the periphery. We evaluate these alternative hypotheses in a local radiation of high alpine carabid beetles (genus Trechus) in the Orobian Alps, Northern Italy. While summits along the northern ridge of this mountain range were surrounded by the icesheet as nunataks during the last glacial maximum, southern areas remained unglaciated. We analyse a total of 1366 bp of mitochondrial (Cox1 and Cox2) data sampled from 150 individuals from twelve populations and 530 bp of nuclear (PEPCK) sequence sampled for a subset of 30 individuals. Using Bayesian inference, we estimate ancestral location states in the gene trees, which in turn are used to infer the most likely order of recolonization under a model of sequential founder events from a massif de refuge from the mitochondrial data. We test for the paraphyly expected under this model and for reciprocal monophyly predicted by a contrasting model of prolonged persistence of nunatak populations. We find that (i) only three populations are incompatible with the paraphyly of the massif de refuge model, (ii) both mitochondrial and nuclear data support separate refugial origins for populations on the western and eastern ends of the northern ridge, and (iii) mitochondrial node ages suggest persistence on the northern ridge for part of the last ice age. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  12. UAV-based Natural Hazard Management in High-Alpine Terrain - Case Studies from Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sotier, Bernadette; Adams, Marc; Lechner, Veronika

    2015-04-01

    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) have become a standard tool for geodata collection, as they allow conducting on-demand mapping missions in a flexible, cost-effective manner at an unprecedented level of detail. Easy-to-use, high-performance image matching software make it possible to process the collected aerial images to orthophotos and 3D-terrain models. Such up-to-date geodata have proven to be an important asset in natural hazard management: Processes like debris flows, avalanches, landslides, fluvial erosion and rock-fall can be detected and quantified; damages can be documented and evaluated. In the Alps, these processes mostly originate in remote areas, which are difficult and hazardous to access, thus presenting a challenging task for RPAS data collection. In particular, the problems include finding suitable landing and piloting-places, dealing with bad or no GPS-signals and the installation of ground control points (GCP) for georeferencing. At the BFW, RPAS have been used since 2012 to aid natural hazard management of various processes, of which three case studies are presented below. The first case study deals with the results from an attempt to employ UAV-based multi-spectral remote sensing to monitor the state of natural hazard protection forests. Images in the visible and near-infrared (NIR) band were collected using modified low-cost cameras, combined with different optical filters. Several UAV-flights were performed in the 72 ha large study site in 2014, which lies in the Wattental, Tyrol (Austria) between 1700 and 2050 m a.s.l., where the main tree species are stone pine and mountain pine. The matched aerial images were analysed using different UAV-specific vitality indices, evaluating both single- and dual-camera UAV-missions. To calculate the mass balance of a debris flow in the Tyrolean Halltal (Austria), an RPAS flight was conducted in autumn 2012. The extreme alpine environment was challenging for both the mission and the evaluation of the aerial

  13. P-wave and surface wave survey for permafrost analysis in alpine regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godio, A.; Socco, L. V.; Garofalo, F.; Arato, A.; Théodule, A.

    2012-04-01

    In various high mountain environments the estimate of mechanical properties of slope and sediments are relevant for the link of the geo-mechanical properties with the climate change effects. Two different locations were selected to perform seismic and georadar surveying, the Tsanteleina glacier (Gran Paradiso) and the Blue Lake in Val d'Ayas in the massif of Monterosa. The analysis of the seismic and GPR lines allowed to characterize the silty soil (top layer) and underlying bedrock. We applied seismic survey in time lapse mode to check the presence of "active" layer and estimate the mechanical properties of the moraines material and their sensitivity to the permafrost changes. Mechanical properties of sediments and moraines in glacial areas are related to the grain-size, the compaction of the material subjected to the past glacial activity, the presence of frozen materials and the reactivity of the permafrost to the climate changes. The test site of Tsanteleina has been equipped with sensors to monitor the temperature of soil and air and with time domain reflectometry to estimate the soil moisture and the frozen and thawing cycle of the uppermost material. Seismic reflections from the top of the permafrost layer are difficult to identify as they are embedded in the source-generated noise. Therefore we estimate seismic velocities from the analysis of traveltime refraction tomography and the analysis of surface wave. This approach provides information on compressional and shear waves using a single acquisition layout and a hammer acts as source. This reduces the acquisition time in complex logistical condition especially in winter period. The seismic survey was performed using 48 vertical geophones with 2 m spacing. The survey has been repeated in two different periods: summer 2011 and winter 2011. Common offset reflection lines with a 200 MHz GPR system (in summer) permitted to investigate the sediments and obtain information on the subsoil layering. The processing

  14. Late Pleistocene and Holocene paleoclimate and alpine glacier fluctuations recorded by high-resolution grain-size data from an alpine lake sediment core, Wind River Range, Wyoming, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson Davis, P.; Machalett, Björn; Gosse, John

    2013-04-01

    Varved lake sediments, which provide ideal high-resolution climate proxies, are not commonly available in many geographic areas over long time scales. This paper utilizes high-resolution grain-size analyses (n = 1040) from a 520-cm long sediment core from Lower Titcomb Lake (LTL), which lies just outside the type Titcomb Basin (TTB) moraines in the Wind River Range, Wyoming. The TTB moraines lie between Lower Titcomb Lake and Upper Titcomb Lake (UTL), about 3 km beyond, and 200 m lower than the modern glacier margin and Gannett Peak (Little Ice Age) moraines in the basin. Based on cosmogenic exposure dating, the TTB moraines are believed to be Younger Dryas (YD) age (Gosse et al., 1995) and lie in a geomorphic position similar to several other outer cirque moraines throughout the western American Cordillera. Until recently, many of these outer cirque moraines were believed to be Neoglacial age. The sediment core discussed here is one of five obtained from the two Titcomb Lakes, but is by the far the longest with the oldest sediment depositional record. Two AMS radiocarbon ages from the 445- and 455-cm core depths (about 2% loss on ignition, LOI) suggest that the lake basin may have been ice-free as early as 16.1 or even 16.8 cal 14C kyr, consistent with 10Be and 26Al exposure ages from boulders and bedrock surfaces outside the TTB moraines. The 257-cm depth in the core marks an abrupt transition from inorganic, sticky gray silt below (rock flour production between the 257 and 466 cm core depths appear to be roughly correlative with the YD-Alleröd-Bölling-Meiendorf-Heinrich 1 climate events recognized in other terrestrial records and Northern Atlantic Ocean marine cores, but provide much higher resolution than most of those records from a climate-sensitive alpine region in North America.

  15. Climate Risks - The Challenge for Alpine Regions. Final Scientific Report of the National Research Programme 'Climate Change and Natural Hazards', NRP 31

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bader, Stephan [Swiss Meteorological Institute, Zurich (Switzerland); Kunz, Pierre [Department of Mineralogy, University of Geneva (Switzerland)

    2000-07-01

    The international scientific community has come to the conclusion that human activities are a non negligible factor influencing the global climate. The leading Swiss climate researchers are supporting this statement. What is the impact of climate change in Switzerland ? After six years of scientific research, the results of the National Research Programme 'Climate Change and Natural Hazards' (NRP 31) are available now. They contribute to a better understanding of the complex nature of the global climate and its specific alpine aspects. This book provides the newest estimations about the impact of temperature and precipitation changes on the environment, the economy and infrastructures. It also describes the possibilities of political and social actions regarding these changes. In the introductory chapter the essential processes necessary to understand the climate system are explained, such as the role of ocean, mechanism of the greenhouse effect, ENSO, NAO, younger Dryas climate, Dansgaard/Oeschger and Heinrich events, to mention just a few. This chapter provides a good foundation for the later chapters which are dedicated to the history of observed climate changes in Switzerland, regionally specific future climate simulations with a high resolution model, impacts of climate changes on earth's surface processes, such as river discharges, glaciers, permafrost, land slides, forestry, agriculture and human activities. With its concrete proposal of a methodology to investigate the impacts of climate changes on human activities, the present volume will offer valuable information for decision makers, concerned citizens as well as teachers and students in climate and environmental sciences. The volume is supplemented by the conclusions of the accompanying group of experts and by a list of all reports published within the NRP 31.

  16. Minimal erosion of Arctic alpine topography during late Quaternary glaciation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gjermundsen, Endre F.; Briner, Jason P.; Akçar, Naki; Foros, Jørn; Kubik, Peter W.; Salvigsen, Otto; Hormes, Anne

    2015-10-01

    The alpine topography observed in many mountainous regions is thought to have formed during repeated glaciations of the Quaternary period. Before this time, landscapes had much less relief. However, the spatial patterns and rates of Quaternary exhumation at high latitudes--where cold-based glaciers may protect rather than erode landscapes--are not fully quantified. Here we determine the exposure and burial histories of rock samples from eight summits of steep alpine peaks in northwestern Svalbard (79.5° N) using analyses of 10Be and 26Al concentrations. We find that the summits have been preserved for at least the past one million years. The antiquity of Svalbard’s alpine landscape is supported by the preservation of sediments older than one million years along a fjord valley, which suggests that both mountain summits and low-elevation landscapes experienced very low erosion rates over the past million years. Our findings support the establishment of northwestern Svalbard’s alpine topography during the early Quaternary. We suggest that, as the Quaternary ice age progressed, glacial erosion in the Arctic became inefficient and confined to ice streams, and high-relief alpine landscapes were preserved by minimally erosive glacier armour.

  17. Seroprevalence of pestivirus in four species of alpine wild ungulates in the High Valley of Susa, Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olde Riekerink, R G M; Dominici, A; Barkema, H W; de Smit, A J

    2005-07-01

    Wildlife, once infected, can serve as a reservoir of infectious diseases that form a constant threat to domestic livestock. To make control and eradication programs successful in the long-term, presence of pestivirus in wildlife populations should be monitored. The goal of this study was to investigate seroprevalence of pestivirus in four alpine wild ungulates in the High Valley of Susa, north-west Italy. Species studied were: red deer (Cervus elaphus), roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), wild boar (Sus scrofa) and chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra). A further goal was using virus neutralisation tests (VNT) for four strains of pestivirus in chamois and wild boar. Three hundred and seventy-five serum samples collected during the hunting season of 1999 were tested for pestivirus specific antibodies. Positive sera of chamois and wild boar were subsequently tested in a VNT with four major subtypes of pestivirus, and virus isolation was performed. No antibodies were found in the 73 samples of roe deer, while 7 (12.5%), 8 (5.9%) and 28 (25.5%) of 56, 136 and 110 samples of wild boar, red deer and chamois were ELISA-positive, respectively. Different ranges of titers were found in the VNT and no pestivirus was isolated in the ELISA-positive wild boar and chamois samples. Several possibilities, which might explain the high seroprevalence in chamois are discussed. Pestivirus antibodies were found in three out of four large alpine ungulates in the High Valley of Susa. Seroprevalence was particularly high in chamois. Further investigation is needed to characterise the pestiviruses that circulate in these animals.

  18. Performance changes during a weeklong high-altitude alpine ski-racing training camp in lowlander young athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hydren, Jay R; Kraemer, William J; Volek, Jeff S; Dunn-Lewis, Courtenay; Comstock, Brett A; Szivak, Tunde K; Hooper, David R; Denegar, Craig R; Maresh, Carl M

    2013-04-01

    Thousands of youth athletes travel to high altitude to participate in lift-access alpine sports. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of acute high-altitude exposure on balance, choice reaction time, power, quickness, flexibility, strength endurance, and V[Combining Dot Above]O2max in youth lowlander athletes during a weeklong preseason training camp in Summit County, CO, USA. Eleven youth ski racers (4 boys and 7 girls; age, 13.7 ± 0.5 years; height, 157.2 ± 12.6 cm; weight, 52.4 ± 6.8 kg) with 7.7 ± 2.2 skiing years of experience participated in baseline testing at 160 m one week before the camp and a set of daily tests in the morning and afternoon at 2,828 m and skied between 3,328 and 3,802 m during a 6-day camp. Balance and choice reaction time tests were stagnant or improved slightly during the first 3 days and then improved on days 4 and 6. Vertical jump, flexibility, T-agility test, and push-ups in 1 minute improved on day 6. The number of sit-ups in 1 minute did not improve, and scores on the multistage fitness test decreased 20.34%. There was no effect of Lake Louise acute mountain sickness (AMS) questionnaire scores on performance variables measured. Athletes sojourning to high altitude for ski camps can train on immediate ascent but should slowly increase training volume over the first 3 days. Athletes should expect improvements in balance and reaction time 3-6 days into acclimatization. Coaches and athletes should expect about 20% of youth lowlander athletes to have signs and symptoms of AMS during the first 3 days of altitude exposure for alpine lift access sports at altitudes of up to 3,800 m.

  19. Alpine treeline and timberline dynamics during the Holocene in the Northern Romanian Carpathians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anca GEANTĂ

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available High altitude environments (treeline and alpine communities are particularly sensitive to climate changes, disturbances and land-use changes due to their limited tolerance and adaptability range, habitat fragmentation and habitat restriction. The current and future climate warming is anticipated to shift the tree- and timberlines upwards thus affecting alpine plant communities and causing land-cover change and fragmentation of alpine habitats. An upslope movement of some trees, shrubs and cold adapted alpine herbs as a response to the current climate warming has already been noted in many montane and subalpine regions.Four Holocene peat and lacustrine sediment sequences located between 1670 and 1918 m a.s.l. (Fig.1, in the Rodna Mountains (Northern Romania, Eastern Carpathians are used with the aim to determine: i the sensitivity of high mountain habitats to climate, fire and land use changes; ii tree- and timberline shifts: and iii the influence of landscape topography on trees and shrubs.

  20. SEA in local land use planning - first experience in the Alpine States

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiricka, Alexandra; Proebstl, Ulrike

    2008-01-01

    In the Alpine area, planning decisions can result in far-reaching consequences because of the high sensitivity of the Alpine ecosystems. This article is based on two hypotheses: (1) The Alpine states/regions were aware of their sensitive environment and therefore recognized the necessity of introducing a comparable instrument to assess local land use planning. (2) By introducing this differentiated assessment tool, namely SEA, an increase in costs may be the consequence. However, better and more transparent planning can contribute to the enhancement of planning standards. To reveal the validity of these assumptions the legal implementation in the Alpine countries Austria, Germany, Italy and France was examined as well as first practical experience resulting from the determined procedures. The results of the implementation process in the four states were compared and discussed on the basis of selected process steps of SEA

  1. The Alpine convention and protocols - the starting points for sustainable development in the Slovenian Alps and its neighbouring regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vesna Kolar-Planinšič

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available The article presents the international agreement Alpine Convention. The states which have signed the agreement have undertaken to the common politics for the preservation and sustainable use of sources. The areas covered by the convention: population and culture, physical planning, prevention of air polution, soil conservation, water management, nature conservation and landscape planning, mountain farming, mountain forestry, tourism and recreation, transport, energy and waste management are presented as well as their aims. The primary stress is given to the protocols: "Physical Planning and Sustainable Development" and "Nature Conservation and Landscape Planning",with the emphasis to the sustainable development. They represent cover and their aims are implemented in all the others protocols.

  2. Climate signal in d13C of wood lignin methoxyl groups from high-elevation alpine larch trees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichelmann, Dana; Greule, Markus; Treydte, Kerstin; Keppler, Frank; Esper, Jan

    2015-04-01

    Tree-rings of high alpine larch trees (Larix decidua) were investigated by a recently established method that measures d13C values of the wood lignin methoxyl groups (Greule et al. 2009). The resulting d13C time series were tested for their potential as a climate proxy. For this 37 larch trees were sampled at the tree line near Simplon Village (Southern Switzerland). They were analysed for their tree-ring width (TRW) and from five individuals d13C of the wood lignin methoxyl groups (d13Cmethoxyl) were measured at annual resolution from 1971-2009 and at pentadal resolution from 1747-2009. The d13Cmethoxyl chronologies were corrected for the anthropogenic change in atmospheric CO2 concentration and its decreasing d13C value. Further, the physiological response of the trees to these atmospheric changes was corrected using the flexible correction factor approach of Treydte et al. (2009), which minimise the residuals with the target climate data. This approach results in the highest so far reported correction factors of 0.032 - 0.036‰/ppmv CO2, which are explained by a low water-use efficiency of deciduous larch. The climate response of the new d13Cmethoxyl proxy shows a significant correlation of 0.75 for the annually and 0.87 for the pentadally resolved data with June to August temperatures. TRW shows also significant correlations with June to August temperatures, but they are lower than the correlations observed for the d13Cmethoxyl chronologies. These results indicate the potential of d13Cmethoxyl chronologies as a summer temperature proxy from high-elevation alpine trees with an even stronger signal than reported from earlier published tree-ring width and maximum latewood density temperature reconstructions. References: Greule, M., Mosandl, A., Hamilton, J.T.G., Keppler, F., 2009. A simple rapid method to precisely determine 13C/12C ratios of plant methoxyl groups. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 23(11): 1710-1714. Treydte, K.S., Frank, D.C., Saurer, M

  3. Very high geothermal gradient in near surface of the Whataroa Valley adjacent to the Alpine Fault: topographic driving forces and permeable mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upton, P.; Sutherland, R.; Townend, J.; Coussens, J.; Capova, L.

    2015-12-01

    The first phase of the Deep Fault Drilling Project (DFDP-1B) yielded a geothermal gradient of 62.6 ± 2.1 °C/km from a depth of 126 m where it intersected the Alpine Fault principal slip surface beneath Gaunt Creek (Sutherland et al. 2012). Ambient fluid pressures in DFDP-2B at Whataroa River were 8-10% above hydrostatic and a geothermal gradient of >130°C/km was determined, the geothermal gradient being considerably higher than we had predicted previously. 3D coupled thermal/fluid flow models have been generated of the Whataroa Valley and the DFDP-2 drill site. Modelling confirms that the following features, present in the Whataroa Valley, are a requirement for a geothermal gradient of >130°C/km at a depth of 1km beneath the valley; high topography, permeability on the order of 10-15 m2 in both the mountains and beneath the valleys to depths of > 1km below the valley floor, and abundant fluid. The high permeability and large topographic driving force leads to abundant meteoric water flowing downward through the mountains, hitting the permeability barrier of the Alpine Fault and being pushed upward into the valleys. The high geothermal gradient of the DFDP-2B borehole implies that the valleys also have a very high permeability which is likely a result of rock damage along the Alpine Fault.

  4. Alpine research today

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Jacques Brun

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Alpine research benefits from several international coordination networks, only one of which – ISCAR (the International Scientific Committee on Research in the Alps – works solely in the Alpine arc. The creation of ISCAR is a consequence of the input and involvement of various Alpine partners around the Alpine Convention. Alpine research now aims to promote an integrated vision of Alpine territories focusing on creating and maintaining spatial and temporal networks of sustainable relationships between humans and the other components of the ecosphere. It combines resource usage with conservation of the biological and cultural diversity that makes up the Alpine identity. This article aims to show: (1 how international Alpine research coordination is organised; (2 the role played by the Alpine Convention as a framework of reference for specifically Alpine research; and (3 the role that the ISCAR international commit-tee and the Interreg “Alpine Space” programmes play in uniting research around territorial challenges relating to biodiversity conservation and territorial development.La recherche sur les Alpes bénéficie de plusieurs réseaux de coordination internationaux dont un seul, le comité international recherche alpine (ISCAR, se consacre exclusivement à l’arc alpin. La création de l’ISCAR est une retombée de la mobilisation des divers partenaires alpins autour de la mise en place de la Convention alpine. Aujourd’hui, la recherche alpine vise à promouvoir une vision intégrée des territoires centrée sur la création et le maintien d’un réseau spatial et temporel de relations durables entre les hommes et les autres composantes de l’écosphère. Elle associe étroitement la mise en valeur des ressources et la conservation des diversités biologiques et culturelles qui constituent l’identité alpine. Cet article a pour ambition de montrer : (1 comment s’organise la coordination internationale des recherches sur les

  5. Introgression from domestic goat generated variation at the major histocompatibility complex of Alpine ibex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine Grossen

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The major histocompatibility complex (MHC is a crucial component of the vertebrate immune system and shows extremely high levels of genetic polymorphism. The extraordinary genetic variation is thought to be ancient polymorphisms maintained by balancing selection. However, introgression from related species was recently proposed as an additional mechanism. Here we provide evidence for introgression at the MHC in Alpine ibex (Capra ibex ibex. At a usually very polymorphic MHC exon involved in pathogen recognition (DRB exon 2, Alpine ibex carried only two alleles. We found that one of these DRB alleles is identical to a DRB allele of domestic goats (Capra aegagrus hircus. We sequenced 2489 bp of the coding and non-coding regions of the DRB gene and found that Alpine ibex homozygous for the goat-type DRB exon 2 allele showed nearly identical sequences (99.8% to a breed of domestic goats. Using Sanger and RAD sequencing, microsatellite and SNP chip data, we show that the chromosomal region containing the goat-type DRB allele has a signature of recent introgression in Alpine ibex. A region of approximately 750 kb including the DRB locus showed high rates of heterozygosity in individuals carrying one copy of the goat-type DRB allele. These individuals shared SNP alleles both with domestic goats and other Alpine ibex. In a survey of four Alpine ibex populations, we found that the region surrounding the DRB allele shows strong linkage disequilibria, strong sequence clustering and low diversity among haplotypes carrying the goat-type allele. Introgression at the MHC is likely adaptive and introgression critically increased MHC DRB diversity in the genetically impoverished Alpine ibex. Our finding contradicts the long-standing view that genetic variability at the MHC is solely a consequence of ancient trans-species polymorphism. Introgression is likely an underappreciated source of genetic diversity at the MHC and other loci under balancing selection.

  6. Introgression from Domestic Goat Generated Variation at the Major Histocompatibility Complex of Alpine Ibex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossen, Christine; Keller, Lukas; Biebach, Iris; Croll, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a crucial component of the vertebrate immune system and shows extremely high levels of genetic polymorphism. The extraordinary genetic variation is thought to be ancient polymorphisms maintained by balancing selection. However, introgression from related species was recently proposed as an additional mechanism. Here we provide evidence for introgression at the MHC in Alpine ibex (Capra ibex ibex). At a usually very polymorphic MHC exon involved in pathogen recognition (DRB exon 2), Alpine ibex carried only two alleles. We found that one of these DRB alleles is identical to a DRB allele of domestic goats (Capra aegagrus hircus). We sequenced 2489 bp of the coding and non-coding regions of the DRB gene and found that Alpine ibex homozygous for the goat-type DRB exon 2 allele showed nearly identical sequences (99.8%) to a breed of domestic goats. Using Sanger and RAD sequencing, microsatellite and SNP chip data, we show that the chromosomal region containing the goat-type DRB allele has a signature of recent introgression in Alpine ibex. A region of approximately 750 kb including the DRB locus showed high rates of heterozygosity in individuals carrying one copy of the goat-type DRB allele. These individuals shared SNP alleles both with domestic goats and other Alpine ibex. In a survey of four Alpine ibex populations, we found that the region surrounding the DRB allele shows strong linkage disequilibria, strong sequence clustering and low diversity among haplotypes carrying the goat-type allele. Introgression at the MHC is likely adaptive and introgression critically increased MHC DRB diversity in the genetically impoverished Alpine ibex. Our finding contradicts the long-standing view that genetic variability at the MHC is solely a consequence of ancient trans-species polymorphism. Introgression is likely an underappreciated source of genetic diversity at the MHC and other loci under balancing selection. PMID:24945814

  7. Stacking and metamorphism of continuous segments of subducted lithosphere in a high-pressure wedge: The example of Alpine Corsica (France)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitale Brovarone, Alberto; Beyssac, Olivier; Malavieille, Jacques; Molli, Giancarlo; Beltrando, Marco; Compagnoni, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    Alpine Corsica consists of a stack of variably metamorphosed units of continental and Tethys-derived rocks. It represents an excellent example of high-pressure (HP) orogenic belt, such as the Western Alps, exposed over a small and accessible area. Compared to the Western Alps, the geology of Alpine Corsica is poorly unraveled. During the 1970s-80s, based on either lithostratigraphic or metamorphic field observations, various classifications of the belt have been proposed, but these classifications have been rarely matched together. Furthermore, through time, the internal complexity of large domains has been progressively left aside in the frame of large-scale geodynamic reconstructions. As a consequence, major open questions on the internal structure of the belt have remained unsolved. Apart from a few local studies, Alpine Corsica has not benefited of modern developments in petrology and basin research. This feature results in several uncertainties when combining lithostratigraphic and metamorphic patterns and, consequently, in the definition of an exhaustive architecture of the belt. In this paper we provide a review on the geology of Alpine Corsica, paying particular attention to the available lithostratigraphic and metamorphic classifications of the metamorphic terranes. These data are completed by a new and exhaustive metamorphic dataset obtained by means of thermometry based on Raman Spectroscopy of Carbonaceous Material (RSCM). This technique provides reliable insights on the peak temperature of the metamorphic history for CM-bearing metasediments. A detailed metamorphic characterization of metasediments, which have been previously largely ignored due to retrogression or to the lack of diagnostic mineralogy, is thus obtained and fruitfully coupled with the available lithostratigraphic data. Nine main tectono-metamorphic units are defined, from subgreenschist (ca. 280-300 °C) to the lawsonite-eclogite-facies (ca. 500-550 °C) condition. These units are

  8. High-performance simulation-based algorithms for an alpine ski racer’s trajectory optimization in heterogeneous computer systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dębski Roman

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Effective, simulation-based trajectory optimization algorithms adapted to heterogeneous computers are studied with reference to the problem taken from alpine ski racing (the presented solution is probably the most general one published so far. The key idea behind these algorithms is to use a grid-based discretization scheme to transform the continuous optimization problem into a search problem over a specially constructed finite graph, and then to apply dynamic programming to find an approximation of the global solution. In the analyzed example it is the minimum-time ski line, represented as a piecewise-linear function (a method of elimination of unfeasible solutions is proposed. Serial and parallel versions of the basic optimization algorithm are presented in detail (pseudo-code, time and memory complexity. Possible extensions of the basic algorithm are also described. The implementation of these algorithms is based on OpenCL. The included experimental results show that contemporary heterogeneous computers can be treated as μ-HPC platforms-they offer high performance (the best speedup was equal to 128 while remaining energy and cost efficient (which is crucial in embedded systems, e.g., trajectory planners of autonomous robots. The presented algorithms can be applied to many trajectory optimization problems, including those having a black-box represented performance measure

  9. Cooccurrence patterns of plants and soil bacteria in the high-alpine subnival zone track environmental harshness

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    Andrew J. King

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Plants and soil microorganisms interact to play a central role in ecosystem functioning. To determine the potential importance of biotic interactions in shaping the distributions of these organisms in a high-alpine subnival landscape, we examine cooccurrence patterns between plant species and bulk-soil bacteria abundances. In this context, a cooccurrence relationship reflects a combination of several assembly processes: that both parties can disperse to the site, that they can survive the abiotic environmental conditions, and that interactions between the biota either facilitate survival or allow for coexistence. Across the entire landscape, 31% of the bacterial sequences in this dataset were significantly correlated to the abundance distribution of one or more plant species. These sequences fell into 14 clades, 6 of which are related to bacteria that are known to form symbioses with plants in other systems. Abundant plant species were more likely to have significant as well as stronger correlations with bacteria and these patterns were more prevalent in lower altitude sites. Conversely, correlations between plant species abundances and bacterial relative abundances were less frequent in sites near the snowline. Thus, plant-bacteria associations became more common as environmental conditions became less harsh and plants became more abundant. This pattern in cooccurrence strength and frequency across the subnival landscape suggests that plant-bacteria interactions are important for the success of life, both below- and above-ground, in an extreme environment.

  10. High Resolution Habitat Suitability Modelling For Restricted-Range Hawaiian Alpine Arthropod Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, N. M.

    2016-12-01

    Mapping potentially suitable habitat is critical for effective species conservation and management but can be challenging in areas exhibiting complex heterogeneity. An approach that combines non-intrusive spatial data collection techniques and field data can lead to a better understanding of landscapes and species distributions. Nysius wekiuicola, commonly known as the wēkiu bug, is the most studied arthropod species endemic to the Maunakea summit in Hawai`i, yet details about its geographic distribution and habitat use remain poorly understood. To predict the geographic distribution of N. wekiuicola, MaxEnt habitat suitability models were generated from a diverse set of input variables, including fifteen years of species occurrence data, high resolution digital elevation models, surface mineralogy maps derived from hyperspectral remote sensing, and climate data. Model results indicate that elevation (78.2 percent), and the presence of nanocrystalline hematite surface minerals (13.7 percent) had the highest influence, with lesser contributions from aspect, slope, and other surface mineral classes. Climatic variables were not included in the final analysis due to auto-correlation and coarse spatial resolution. Biotic factors relating to predation and competition also likely dictate wēkiu bug capture patterns and influence our results. The wēkiu bug range and habitat suitability models generated as a result of this study will be directly incorporated into management and restoration goals for the summit region and can also be adapted for other arthropod species present, leading to a more holistic understanding of metacommunity dynamics. Key words: Microhabitat, Structure from Motion, Lidar, MaxEnt, Habitat Suitability

  11. Historic records of organic compounds from a high Alpine glacier: influences of biomass burning, anthropogenic emissions, and dust transport

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    C. Müller-Tautges

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Historic records of α-dicarbonyls (glyoxal, methylglyoxal, carboxylic acids (C6–C12 dicarboxylic acids, pinic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid, phthalic acid, 4-methylphthalic acid, and ions (oxalate, formate, calcium were determined with annual resolution in an ice core from Grenzgletscher in the southern Swiss Alps, covering the time period from 1942 to 1993. Chemical analysis of the organic compounds was conducted using ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC coupled to electrospray ionization high-resolution mass spectrometry (ESI-HRMS for dicarbonyls and long-chain carboxylic acids and ion chromatography for short-chain carboxylates. Long-term records of the carboxylic acids and dicarbonyls, as well as their source apportionment, are reported for western Europe. This is the first study comprising long-term trends of dicarbonyls and long-chain dicarboxylic acids (C6–C12 in Alpine precipitation. Source assignment of the organic species present in the ice core was performed using principal component analysis. Our results suggest biomass burning, anthropogenic emissions, and transport of mineral dust to be the main parameters influencing the concentration of organic compounds. Ice core records of several highly correlated compounds (e.g., p-hydroxybenzoic acid, pinic acid, pimelic, and suberic acids can be related to the forest fire history in southern Switzerland. P-hydroxybenzoic acid was found to be the best organic fire tracer in the study area, revealing the highest correlation with the burned area from fires. Historical records of methylglyoxal, phthalic acid, and dicarboxylic acids adipic acid, sebacic acid, and dodecanedioic acid are comparable with that of anthropogenic emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs. The small organic acids, oxalic acid and formic acid, are both highly correlated with calcium, suggesting their records to be affected by changing mineral dust transport to the drilling site.

  12. High Shedding Potential and Significant Individual Heterogeneity in Naturally-Infected Alpine ibex (Capra ibex With Brucella melitensis

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    Sébastien Lambert

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Wildlife reservoirs of infectious diseases raise major management issues. In Europe, brucellosis has been eradicated in domestic ruminants from most countries and wild ruminants have not been considered important reservoirs so far. However, a high prevalence of Brucella melitensis infection has been recently identified in a French population of Alpine ibex (Capra ibex, after the emergence of brucellosis was confirmed in a dairy cattle farm and two human cases. This situation raised the need to identify the factors driving the persistence of Brucella infection at high prevalence levels in this ibex population. In the present paper, we studied the shedding pattern of B. melitensis in ibex from Bargy Massif, French Alps. Bacteriological examinations (1–15 tissues/samples per individual were performed on 88 seropositive, supposedly infected and euthanized individuals. Among them, 51 (58% showed at least one positive culture, including 45 ibex with at least one Brucella isolation from a urogenital sample or a lymph node in the pelvic area (active infection in organs in the pelvic area. Among these 45 ibex, 26 (30% of the total number of necropsied animals showed at least one positive culture for a urogenital organ and were considered as being at risk of shedding the bacteria at the time of capture. We observed significant heterogeneity between sex-and-age classes: seropositive females were most at risk to excrete Brucella before the age of 5 years, possibly corresponding to abortion during the first pregnancy following infection such as reported in the domestic ruminants. The high shedding potential observed in young females may have contributed to the self-sustained maintenance of infection in this population, whereas males are supposed to play a role of transmission between spatial units through venereal transmission during mating. This heterogeneity in the shedding potential of seropositive individuals should be considered in the future to

  13. Response of alpine vegetation growth dynamics to snow cover phenology on the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, X.; Wu, C.

    2017-12-01

    Alpine vegetation plays a crucial role in global energy cycles with snow cover, an essential component of alpine land cover showing high sensitivity to climate change. The Tibetan Plateau (TP) has a typical alpine vegetation ecosystem and is rich of snow resources. With global warming, the snow of the TP has undergone significant changes that will inevitably affect the growth of alpine vegetation, but observed evidence of such interaction is limited. In particular, a comprehensive understanding of the responses of alpine vegetation growth to snow cover variability is still not well characterized on TP region. To investigate this, we calculated three indicators, the start (SOS) and length (LOS) of growing season, and the maximum of normalized difference vegetation index (NDVImax) as proxies of vegetation growth dynamics from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data for 2000-2015. Snow cover duration (SCD) and melt (SCM) dates were also extracted during the same time frame from the combination of MODIS and the Interactive Multi-sensor Snow and Ice Mapping System (IMS) data. We found that the snow cover phenology had a strong control on alpine vegetation growth dynamics. Furthermore, the responses of SOS, LOS and NDVImax to snow cover phenology varied among plant functional types, eco-geographical zones, and temperature and precipitation gradients. The alpine steppes showed a much stronger negative correlation between SOS and SCD, and also a more evidently positive relationship between LOS and SCD than other types, indicating a longer SCD would lead to an earlier SOS and longer LOS. Most areas showed positive correlation between SOS and SCM, while a contrary response was also found in the warm but drier areas. Both SCD and SCM showed positive correlations with NDVImax, but the relationship became weaker with the increase of precipitation. Our findings provided strong evidences between vegetation growth and snow cover phenology, and changes in

  14. Two millennia of torrential activity reconstructed from alpine lake sediments: towards regional patterns of extreme precipitation changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilhelm, B.; Arnaud, F.; Giguet-Covex, C.; Sabatier, P.; Crouzet, C.; Delannoy, J. J.

    2012-04-01

    In mountain areas extreme precipitation events trigger torrential floods, characterized by a sudden and intense rise of discharge causing large human and economic losses. Their frequency and/or intensity are expected to increase in the context of global warming. However, the relationship between such events and climate changes remains difficult to assess. Long-term geological records of intense events could enable to extend documented records beyond the observational data for a better understanding of local to regional flood hazard patterns in relation to past climatic changes and hence improving predictive models. In this context, lake sediment records appear a relevant archive as they are continuous records in which the identification of high-energy sediment layers allows to reconstruct flood calendar. In addition, the flood intensity can be reconstructed from the coarse fraction of each flood layer. Frequency and intensity of past torrential floods were thus reconstructed from four high-elevation lake records of the French Alps, in the framework of Pygmalion research program. Studied sites were selected along a north-south transect over this region to investigate the flooding responses to different climatic influences (westerlies in the north and Mediterranean influences in the south). High-resolution geochemical and sedimentological analyses were undertaken for an exhaustive identification of flood layers and several dating methods (short-lived radionuclides, 14C, correlation with historic events, paleomagnetism) were combined to reduce age uncertainties as much as possible. Over the entire French Alps, the torrential-flood frequency increases at a secular timescale during the cold period of the Little Ice Age (LIA; 1300-1900 AD). This increase seems in agreement with a regional high wetness, already described in the literature, possibly related to an increase in cyclonic activity. Superimposed to this secular trend, a pluri-decadal variability appears at

  15. Observations of fluorescent aerosol-cloud interactions in the free troposphere at the Sphinx high Alpine research station, Jungfraujoch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, I.; Lloyd, G.; Bower, K. N.; Connolly, P. J.; Flynn, M. J.; Kaye, P. H.; Choularton, T. W.; Gallagher, M. W.

    2015-09-01

    The fluorescent nature of aerosol at a high Alpine site was studied using a wide-band integrated bioaerosol (WIBS-4) single particle multi-channel ultra violet-light induced fluorescence (UV-LIF) spectrometer. This was supported by comprehensive cloud microphysics and meteorological measurements with the aims of cataloguing concentrations of bio-fluorescent aerosols at this high altitude site and also investigating possible influences of UV-fluorescent particle types on cloud-aerosol processes. Analysis of background free tropospheric air masses, using a total aerosol inlet, showed there to be a minor but statistically insignificant increase in the fluorescent aerosol fraction during in-cloud cases compared to out of cloud cases. The size dependence of the fluorescent aerosol fraction showed the larger aerosol to be more likely to be fluorescent with 80 % of 10 μm particles being fluorescent. Whilst the fluorescent particles were in the minority (NFl/NAll = 0.27±0.19), a new hierarchical agglomerative cluster analysis approach, Crawford et al. (2015) revealed the majority of the fluorescent aerosol were likely to be representative of fluorescent mineral dust. A minor episodic contribution from a cluster likely to be representative of primary biological aerosol particles (PBAP) was also observed with a wintertime baseline concentration of 0.1±0.4 L-1. Given the low concentration of this cluster and the typically low ice active fraction of studied PBAP (e.g. pseudomonas syringae) we suggest that the contribution to the observed ice crystal concentration at this location is not significant during the wintertime.

  16. Isotopic chemical weathering behaviour of Pb derived from a high-Alpine Holocene lake-sediment record

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutjahr, Marcus; Süfke, Finn; Gilli, Adrian; Anselmetti, Flavio; Glur, Lukas; Eisenhauer, Anton

    2017-04-01

    Several studies assessing the chemical weathering systematics of Pb isotopes provided evidence for the incongruent release of Pb from source rocks during early stages of chemical weathering, resulting in runoff compositions more radiogenic (higher) than the bulk source-rock composition [e.g. 1]. Deep NW Atlantic seawater Pb isotope records covering the last glacial-interglacial transition further support these findings. Clear excursions towards highly radiogenic Pb isotopic input in the deep NW Atlantic seen during the early Holocene, hence after the large-scale retreat of the Laurentide Ice Sheet in North America, are interpreted to be controlled by preferential release of radiogenic Pb from U- and Th-rich mineral phases during early stages of chemical weathering that are less resistant to chemical dissolution than other rock-forming mineral phases [2-4]. To date, however, no terrestrial Pb isotope record exists that could corroborate the evidence from deep marine sites for efficient late deglacial weathering and washout of radiogenic Pb. We present a high-resolution adsorbed Pb isotope record from a sediment core retrieved from Alpine Lake Grimsel (1908 m.a.s.l.) in Switzerland, consisting of 117 Pb compositions over the past 10 kyr. This high-Alpine study area is ideally located for incipient and prolonged chemical weathering studies. The method used to extract the adsorbed lake Pb isotope signal is identical to previous marine approaches targeting the authigenic Fe-Mn oxyhydroxides fraction within the lake sediments [5, 6]. The Pb isotope compositions are further accompanied by various elemental ratios derived from the same samples that equally trace climatic boundary conditions in the Grimsel Lake area. The Pb isotopic composition recorded in Lake Grimsel is remarkably constant throughout the majority of the Holocene until ˜2.5 ka BP, despite variable sediment composition and -age, and isotopically relatively close to the signature of the granitic source rock

  17. Chemical composition of free tropospheric aerosol for PM1 and coarse mode at the high alpine site Jungfraujoch

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    J. Cozic

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The chemical composition of submicron (fine mode and supermicron (coarse mode aerosol particles has been investigated at the Jungfraujoch high alpine research station (3580 m a.s.l., Switzerland as part of the GAW aerosol monitoring program since 1999. A clear seasonality was observed for all major components throughout the period with low concentrations in winter (predominantly free tropospheric aerosol and higher concentrations in summer (enhanced vertical transport of boundary layer pollutants. In addition, mass closure was attempted during intensive campaigns in March 2004, February–March 2005 and August 2005. Ionic, carbonaceous and non-refractory components of the aerosol were quantified as well as the PM1 and coarse mode total aerosol mass concentrations. A relatively low conversion factor of 1.8 for organic carbon (OC to particulate organic matter (OM was found in winter (February–March 2005. Organics, sulfate, ammonium, and nitrate were the major components of the fine aerosol fraction that were identified, while calcium and nitrate were the only two measured components contributing to the coarse mode. The aerosol mass concentrations for fine and coarse mode aerosol measured during the intensive campaigns were not typical of the long-term seasonality due largely to dynamical differences. Average fine and coarse mode concentrations during the intensive field campaigns were 1.7 μg m−3 and 2.4 μg m−3 in winter and 2.5 μg m−3 and 2.0 μg m−3 in summer, respectively. The mass balance of aerosols showed higher contributions of calcium and nitrate in the coarse mode during Saharan dust events (SDE than without SDE.

  18. Analysis of relation between geomorphologic processes and alpine vegetation in the high mountain landscape (Tatry Mts.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boltiziar, M.

    2003-01-01

    The aim was to present some information about starting of high mountains ecological monitoring and its first partial results. The research is focused on a long-term observation of vegetation changes (species composition, species spatial distribution) in relation to geomorphic processes and geo-relief attributes at meso- and micro-scale of landscape. We established in 2002 for this purpose six permanent plots (4 x 4 m) in the selected localities of High and Belianske Tatras Mts. (Author)

  19. [Soil particle size distribution and its fractal dimension among degradation sequences of the alpine meadow in the source region of the Yangtze and Yellow River, Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Mao-Hong; Lin, Hui-Long

    2014-03-01

    The alpine meadow in the source region of the Yangtze and Yellow River is suffering serious deterioration. Though great efforts have been put into, the restoration for the degraded grassland is far from being effective, mainly due to poor understanding of the degradation mechanism of alpine meadow in this region. In order to clarify the formation mechanism of degradation grassland and provide the new ideas for restoration, degradation sequences of the alpine meadow in the source region of the Yangtze and Yellow River were taken as target systems to analyze the soil particle size distribution, the fractal dimension of the soil particle size, and the relationship between soil erosion modulus and fractal dimension. The results showed that, with increasing grassland degradation, the percentage contents of clay increased while the percentage contents of silt sand and very fine sand showed a decreasing trend. The fractal dimension presented a positive correlation with clay among the degradation sequences while negative correlations were found with very fine sand and silt sand. The curvilinear regression of fractal dimension and erosion modulus fitted a quadratic function. Judged by the function, fractal dimension 2.81 was the threshold value of soil erosion. The threshold value has an indicative meaning on predicting the breakout of grazing-induced erosion and on restoration of the degraded grassland. Taking fractal dimension of 2.81 as the restoration indicator, adoption of corresponding measures to make fractal dimension less than 2.81, would an effective way to restore the degradation grassland.

  20. Plants in alpine environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Germino, Matthew J.

    2014-01-01

    Alpine and subalpine plant species are of special interest in ecology and ecophysiology because they represent life at the climate limit and changes in their relative abundances can be a bellwether for climate-change impacts. Perennial life forms dominate alpine plant communities, and their form and function reflect various avoidance, tolerance, or resistance strategies to interactions of cold temperature, radiation, wind, and desiccation stresses that prevail in the short growing seasons common (but not ubiquitous) in alpine areas. Plant microclimate is typically uncoupled from the harsh climate of the alpine, often leading to substantially warmer plant temperatures than air temperatures recorded by weather stations. Low atmospheric pressure is the most pervasive, fundamental, and unifying factor for alpine environments, but the resulting decrease in partial pressure of CO2 does not significantly limit carbon gain by alpine plants. Factors such as tree islands and topographic features create strong heterogeneous mosaics of microclimate and snow cover that are reflected in plant community composition. Factors affecting tree establishment and growth and formation of treeline are key to understanding alpine ecology. Carbohydrate and other carbon storage, rapid development in a short growing season, and physiological function at low temperature are prevailing attributes of alpine plants. A major contemporary research theme asks whether chilling at alpine-treeline affects the ability of trees to assimilate the growth resources and particularly carbon needed for growth or whether the growth itself is limited by the alpine environment. Alpine areas tend to be among the best conserved, globally, yet they are increasingly showing response to a range of anthropogenic impacts, such as atmospheric deposition.

  1. Hygroscopic Properties and Chemical Composition of Aerosol Particles at the High Alpine Site Jungfraujoch

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weingarter, E.; Gysel, M.; Sjoegren, S.; Baltesperger, U.; Alfarra, R.; Bower, K.; Coe, H.

    2004-03-01

    The hygroscopic properties of aerosols play a significant role in atmospheric phenomena such as acid deposition, visibility degradation and climate change. Due to the hygroscopic growth of the particles, water is often the dominant component of the ambient aerosol at high relative humidity (RH) conditions. The ability to absorb water depends on the particle chemical composition, dry size, and shape. The aim of this study is to link the chemical composition of the atmospheric aerosol to its hygroscopic properties. (author)

  2. Hygroscopicity of the submicrometer aerosol at the high-alpine site Jungfraujoch, 3580 m a.s.l., Switzerland

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    S. Sjogren

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Data from measurements of hygroscopic growth of submicrometer aerosol with a hygroscopicity tandem differential mobility analyzer (HTDMA during four campaigns at the high alpine research station Jungfraujoch, Switzerland, are presented. The campaigns took place during the years 2000, 2002, 2004 and 2005, each lasting approximately one month. Hygroscopic growth factors (GF, i.e. the relative change in particle diameter from dry diameter, D0, to diameter measured at higher relative humidity, RH are presented for three distinct air mass types, namely for: 1 free tropospheric winter conditions, 2 planetary boundary layer influenced air masses (during a summer period and 3 Saharan dust events (SDE. The GF values at 85% RH (D0=100 nm were 1.40±0.11 and 1.29±0.08 for the first two situations while for SDE a bimodal GF distribution was often found. No phase changes were observed when the RH was varied between 10–90%, and the continuous water uptake could be well described with a single-parameter empirical model. The frequency distributions of the average hygroscopic growth factors and the width of the retrieved growth factor distributions (indicating whether the aerosol is internally or externally mixed are presented, which can be used for modeling purposes.

    Measurements of size resolved chemical composition were performed with an aerosol mass spectrometer in parallel to the GF measurements. This made it possible to estimate the apparent ensemble mean GF of the organics (GForg using inverse ZSR (Zdanovskii-Stokes-Robinson modeling. GForg was found to be ~1.20 at aw=0.85, which is at the upper end of previous laboratory and field data though still in agreement with the highly aged and oxidized nature of the Jungfraujoch aerosol.

  3. Causes and effects of long periods of ice cover on a remote high Alpine lake

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    Michael STURM

    2000-09-01

    Full Text Available The response of the physical and chemical limnology of Hagelseewli (2339 m a.s.l. to local meteorological forcing was investigated from 1996 to 1998 using an automatic weather station, thermistor chains, water samples and sediment traps. On-site meteorological measurements revealed the paramount importance of local topographic shading for the limnology of the lake. A high cliff to the south diminishes incident radiation by 15% to 90%, resulting in a long period of ice cover. Hence, the spring and summer seasons are extremely condensed, allowing only about 2 months per year for mixing, oxygen uptake, nutrient inflow, water exchange and phytoplankton growth. Regular measurements of water temperature, chemistry and diatom composition show that Hagelseewli responds very rapidly to changes in nutrient concentrations and light conditions. This response is restricted mainly to an extremely short productivity pulse, which takes place as soon as the lake is completely free of ice. Ice-free conditions are indicated by the occurrence of planktonic diatoms. In contrast to most low-altitude lakes, maximum productivity occurs in the middle of the water column (6-9 m, where first light, and then soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP, are the limiting factors. During the period of thawing, large amounts of ammonium enter the lake. Nevertheless, allochthonous nutrient input is not important because SRP, the limiting nutrient for algal growth, originates from the sediments. Water chemistry data and data from sediment traps show that, although autochthonous calcite precipitation does occur, the calcite crystals are redissolved completely in the bottom waters during the extended period of ice cover. Thus, the most important factor for changes in the nutrient budget, primary production and preservation of calcite is the bottom water oxygen status, which is governed by the occurrence of an ice-free period. We hypothesise that the duration of the ice-free period is of

  4. Distribution of VOCs between air and snow at the Jungfraujoch high alpine research station, Switzerland, during CLACE 5 (winter 2006

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    E. Starokozhev

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Volatile organic compounds (VOCs were analyzed in air and snow samples at the Jungfraujoch high alpine research station in Switzerland as part of CLACE 5 (CLoud and Aerosol Characterization Experiment during February/March 2006. The fluxes of individual compounds in ambient air were calculated from gas phase concentrations and wind speed. The highest concentrations and flux values were observed for the aromatic hydrocarbons benzene (14.3 μg.m−2 s−1, 1,3,5-trimethylbenzene (5.27 μg.m−2 s−1, toluene (4.40 μg.m−2 −1, and the aliphatic hydrocarbons i-butane (7.87 μg.m−2 s−1, i-pentane (3.61 μg.m−2 s−1 and n-butane (3.23 μg.m−2 s−1. The measured concentrations and fluxes were used to calculate the efficiency of removal of VOCs by snow, which is defined as difference between the initial and final concentration/flux values of compounds before and after wet deposition. The removal efficiency was calculated at −24°C (−13.7°C and ranged from 37% (35% for o-xylene to 93% (63% for i-pentane. The distribution coefficients of VOCs between the air and snow phases were derived from published poly-parameter linear free energy relationship (pp-LFER data, and compared with distribution coefficients obtained from the simultaneous measurements of VOC concentrations in air and snow at Jungfraujoch. The coefficients calculated from pp-LFER exceeded those values measured in the present study, which indicates more efficient snow scavenging of the VOCs investigated than suggested by theoretical predictions.

  5. Climate variability during the deglaciation and Holocene in a high-altitude alpine lake deduced from the sedimentary record from Laguna Seca, Sierra Nevada, southern Iberian Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camuera, Jon; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; José Ramos-Román, María; García-Alix, Antonio; Jiménez-Espejo, Francisco; Anderson, R. Scott

    2017-04-01

    High-resolution X-ray fluorescence (XRF), magnetic susceptibility (MS), color and lithological analyses have been carried out on a 3.6 m-long sediment core from Laguna Seca, a high-elevation dry lake from Sierra Nevada mountain range, southern Spain. This is the longest sedimentary record retrieved from an alpine lake in southern Iberian Peninsula. Besides, alpine lakes are very sensitive environments to climate changes and previous studies showed that Laguna Seca could provide an excellent record to identify millennial-scale climate variations during deglaciation and the whole Holocene. XRF analyses, in particular high calcium and low K/Ca ratios, show aridity phases, very well represented during Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and the Younger Dryas (YD). Arid events are also shown at ca. 8.1 ka BP, ca. 4.4 ka BP and the latest Holocene. On the other hand, negative values in calcium and positive values in K/Ca appear in the Bølling-Allerød (BA) and during the early Holocene until ca. 6 ka BP, indicating more humidity and higher run-off. A progressive aridification trend is also observed in the Holocene, changing from more humid conditions during the early Holocene to more aridity during the late Holocene.

  6. Regional coupling of unsaturated and saturated flow and transport modeling - implementation at an alpine foothill aquifer in Austria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klammler, G.; Rock, G.; Kupfersberger, H.; Fank, J.

    2012-04-01

    For many European countries nitrate leaching from the soil zone into the aquifer due to surplus application of mineral fertilizer and animal manure by farmers constitutes the most important threat to groundwater quality. Since this is a diffuse pollution situation measures to change agricultural production have to be investigated at the aquifer scale. In principal, the problem could be solved by the 3 dimensional equation describing variable saturated groundwater flow and solute transport. However, this is computationally prohibitive due to the temporal and spatial scope of the task, particularly in the framework of running numerous simulations to compromise between conflicting interests (i.e. good groundwater status and high agricultural yield). For the aquifer 'Westliches Leibnitzer Feld' we break down this task into 1d vertical movement of water and nitrate mass in the unsaturated zone and 2d horizontal flow of water and solutes in the saturated compartment. The aquifer is located within the Mur Valley about 20 km south of Graz and consists of early Holocene gravel with varying amounts of sand and some silt. The unsaturated flow and nitrate leaching package SIMWASER/STOTRASIM (Stenitzer, 1988; Feichtinger, 1998) is calibrated to the lysimeter data sets and further on applied to so called hydrotopes which are unique combinations of soil type and agricultural management. To account for the unknown regional distribution of crops grown and amount, timing and kind of fertilizers used a stochastic tool (Klammler et al, 2011) is developed that generates sequences of crop rotations derived from municipal statistical data. To match the observed nitrate concentrations in groundwater with a saturated nitrate transport model it is of utmost importance to apply a realistic input distribution of nitrate mass in terms of spatial and temporal characteristics. A table is generated by running SIMWASER/STOTRASIM that consists of unsaturated water and nitrate fluxes for each 10 cm

  7. Prediction of minimum temperatures in an alpine region by linear and non-linear post-processing of meteorological models

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    R. Barbiero

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Model Output Statistics (MOS refers to a method of post-processing the direct outputs of numerical weather prediction (NWP models in order to reduce the biases introduced by a coarse horizontal resolution. This technique is especially useful in orographically complex regions, where large differences can be found between the NWP elevation model and the true orography. This study carries out a comparison of linear and non-linear MOS methods, aimed at the prediction of minimum temperatures in a fruit-growing region of the Italian Alps, based on the output of two different NWPs (ECMWF T511–L60 and LAMI-3. Temperature, of course, is a particularly important NWP output; among other roles it drives the local frost forecast, which is of great interest to agriculture. The mechanisms of cold air drainage, a distinctive aspect of mountain environments, are often unsatisfactorily captured by global circulation models. The simplest post-processing technique applied in this work was a correction for the mean bias, assessed at individual model grid points. We also implemented a multivariate linear regression on the output at the grid points surrounding the target area, and two non-linear models based on machine learning techniques: Neural Networks and Random Forest. We compare the performance of all these techniques on four different NWP data sets. Downscaling the temperatures clearly improved the temperature forecasts with respect to the raw NWP output, and also with respect to the basic mean bias correction. Multivariate methods generally yielded better results, but the advantage of using non-linear algorithms was small if not negligible. RF, the best performing method, was implemented on ECMWF prognostic output at 06:00 UTC over the 9 grid points surrounding the target area. Mean absolute errors in the prediction of 2 m temperature at 06:00 UTC were approximately 1.2°C, close to the natural variability inside the area itself.

  8. Monitoring coal mine changes and their impact on landscape patterns in an alpine region: a case study of the Muli coal mine in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Dawen; Yan, Changzhen; Xing, Zanpin; Xiu, Lina

    2017-10-14

    The Muli coal mine is the largest open-cast coal mine in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and it consists of two independent mining sites named Juhugeng and Jiangcang. It has received much attention due to the ecological problems caused by rapid expansion in recent years. The objective of this paper was to monitor the mining area and its surrounding land cover over the period 1976-2016 utilizing Landsat images, and the network structure of land cover changes was determined to visualize the relationships and pattern of the mining-induced land cover changes. In addition, the responses of the surrounding landscape pattern were analysed by constructing gradient transects. The results show that the mining area was increasing in size, especially after 2000 (increased by 71.68 km 2 ), and this caused shrinkage of the surrounding lands, including alpine meadow wetland (53.44 km 2 ), alpine meadow (6.28 km 2 ) and water (6.24 km 2 ). The network structure of the mining area revealed the changes in lands surrounding the mining area. The impact of mining development on landscape patterns was mainly distributed within a range of 1-6 km. Alpine meadow wetland was most affected in Juhugeng, while alpine meadow was most affected in Jiangcang. The results of this study provide a reference for the ecological assessment and restoration of the Muli coal mine land.

  9. The views of experts and residents on social vulnerability to flash floods in an Alpine region of Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Marchi, Bruna; Scolobig, Anna

    2012-04-01

    This paper reports on research work performed for Floodsite a European Community-funded project on the social aspects of vulnerability in the Adige/Sarca river basin of the Trentino-Alto Adige region, Italy. It identifies some limitations to the use of a fixed set of indicators, which fail to account for either local peculiarities or the intangible aspects that contribute to the shaping of social vulnerability. The authors employed a number of methods to investigate the opinions of professionals and residents on risk and safety, distinguishing between the individual and the institutional components of social vulnerability. Adopting a systemic perspective, they explored the interactions between these two elements, showing how they may give rise to unexpected phenomena. The 'safety paradox' and the 'efficiency paradox' are discussed, emerging when increased protection provided by structural devices and dedicated institutions translates into a lack of awareness and agency on the part of residents. © 2012 The Author(s). Disasters © Overseas Development Institute, 2012.

  10. Les barrages alpins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Marnezy

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Les barrages-réservoirs de montagne ont été réalisés initialement dans les Alpes pour répondre à la demande d’énergie en période hivernale. Une certaine diversification des usages de l’eau s’est ensuite progressivement développée, en relation avec le développement touristique des collectivités locales. Aujourd’hui, la participation des ouvrages d’Électricité De France à la production de neige de culture représente une nouvelle étape. Dans les régions où les aménagements hydroélectriques sont nombreux, les besoins en eau pour la production de neige peuvent être résolus par prélèvements à partir des adductions EDF. Les gestionnaires de stations échappent ainsi aux inconvénients liés à la construction et à la gestion des « retenues collinaires ». Cette évolution, qui concerne déjà quelques régions alpines comme la haute Maurienne ou le Beaufortin, apparaît comme une forme renouvelée d’intégration territoriale de la ressource en eau.Mountain reservoirs were initially built in the Alps to meet energy needs in the winter. A certain diversification in the uses of water then gradually developed, related to tourism development in the local communities. Today, the use of facilities belonging to EDF (French Electricity Authority to provide water for winter resorts to make artificial snow represents a new phase. By taking water from EDF resources to supply snow-making equipment, resort managers are thus able to avoid the problems related to the construction and management of small headwater dams. This new orientation in the use of mountain water resources already affects a number of alpine regions such as the Upper Maurienne valley and Beaufortain massif and represents a renewed form of the territorial integration of water resources.

  11. Power variables and bilateral force differences during unloaded and loaded squat jumps in high performance alpine ski racers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, Carson; Raschner, Christian; Platzer, Hans-Peter

    2009-05-01

    The purpose of this paper was to investigate the power-load relationship and to compare power variables and bilateral force imbalances between sexes with squat jumps. Twenty men and 17 women, all members of the Austrian alpine ski team (junior and European Cup), performed unloaded and loaded (barbell loads equal to 25, 50, 75, and 100% body weight [BW]) squat jumps with free weights using a specially designed spotting system. Ground reaction force records from 2 force platforms were used to calculate relative average power (P), relative average power in the first 100 ms of the jump (P01), relative average power in the first 200 ms of the jump (P02), jump height, percentage of best jump height (%Jump), and maximal force difference between dominant and nondominant leg (Fmaxdiff). The men displayed significantly higher values at all loads for P and jump height (p free weights.

  12. Analysis of the spatial and temporal variation of seasonal snow accumulation in alpine catchments using airborne laser scanning : basic research for the adaptation of spatially distributed hydrological models to mountain regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Helfricht, K.

    2014-01-01

    Information about the spatial distribution of snow accumulation is a prerequisitefor adaptating hydro-meteorological models to achieve realistic simulations of therunoff from mountain catchments. Therefore, the spatial snow depthdistribution in complex topography of ice-free terrain and glaciers was investigatedusing airborne laser scanning (ALS) data. This thesis presents for the first time an analysis of the persistence and the variability of the snow patterns at the end of five accumulation seasons in a comparatively large catchment. ALS derived seasonal surface elevation changes on glaciers were compared to the actual snow depths calculated from ground penetrating radar (GPR) measurements. Areas of increased deviations. In the investigated region, the ALS-derived snow depths on most of the glacier surface do not deviate markedly from actual snow depths. 75% of a the total area showed low inter-annual variability of standardized snow depths at the end of the five accumulation seasons. The high inter-annual variability of snow depths could be attributed to changes in the ice cover within the investigated 10-yearperiod for much of the remaining area. Avalanches and snow sloughs continuously contribute to the accumulation on glaciers, but their share of the total snow covervolume is small. The assimilation of SWE maps calculated from ALS data in the adaptation of snow-hydrological models to mountain catchments improved the results not only for the but also for the simulated snow cover distribution and for the mass balance of the glaciers. The results demonstrate that ALS data are a beneficial source for extensive analysis of snow patterns and for modeling the runoff from high Alpine catchments.(author) [de

  13. Frost resistance in alpine woody plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuner, Gilbert

    2014-01-01

    This report provides a brief review of key findings related to frost resistance in alpine woody plant species, summarizes data on their frost resistance, highlights the importance of freeze avoidance mechanisms, and indicates areas of future research. Freezing temperatures are possible throughout the whole growing period in the alpine life zone. Frost severity, comprised of both intensity and duration, becomes greater with increasing elevation and, there is also a greater probability, that small statured woody plants, may be insulated by snow cover. Several frost survival mechanisms have evolved in woody alpine plants in response to these environmental conditions. Examples of tolerance to extracellular freezing and freeze dehydration, life cycles that allow species to escape frost, and freeze avoidance mechanisms can all be found. Despite their specific adaption to the alpine environment, frost damage can occur in spring, while all alpine woody plants have a low risk of frost damage in winter. Experimental evidence indicates that premature deacclimation in Pinus cembra in the spring, and a limited ability of many species of alpine woody shrubs to rapidly reacclimate when they lose snow cover, resulting in reduced levels of frost resistance in the spring, may be particularly critical under the projected changes in climate. In this review, frost resistance and specific frost survival mechanisms of different organs (leaves, stems, vegetative and reproductive over-wintering buds, flowers, and fruits) and tissues are compared. The seasonal dynamics of frost resistance of leaves of trees, as opposed to woody shrubs, is also discussed. The ability of some tissues and organs to avoid freezing by supercooling, as visualized by high resolution infrared thermography, are also provided. Collectively, the report provides a review of the complex and diverse ways that woody plants survive in the frost dominated environment of the alpine life zone.

  14. Frost resistance of alpine woody plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilbert eNeuner

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This report provides a brief review of key findings related to frost resistance in alpine woody plant species, summarizes data on their frost resistance, highlights the importance of freeze avoidance mechanisms, and indicates areas of future research.Freezing temperatures are possible throughout the whole growing period in the alpine life zone. Frost severity, comprised of both intensity and duration, becomes greater with increasing elevation and, there is also a greater probability, that small statured woody plants, may be insulated by snow cover.Several frost survival mechanisms have evolved in woody alpine plants in response to these environmental conditions. Examples of tolerance to extracellular freezing and freeze dehydration, life cycles that allow species to escape frost, and freeze avoidance mechanisms can all be found. Despite their specific adaption to the alpine environment, frost damage can occur in spring, while all alpine woody plants have a low risk of frost damage in winter. Experimental evidence indicates that premature deacclimation in Pinus cembra in the spring, and a limited ability of many species of alpine woody shrubs to rapidly reacclimate when they lose snow cover, resulting in reduced levels of frost resistance in the spring, may be particularly critical under the projected changes in climate.In this review, frost resistance and specific frost survival mechanisms of different organs (leaves, stems, vegetative and reproductive over-wintering buds, flowers and fruits and tissues are compared. The seasonal dynamics of frost resistance of leaves of trees, as opposed to woody shrubs, is also discussed. The ability of some tissues and organs to avoid freezing by supercooling, as visualized by high resolution infrared thermography, are also provided. Collectively, the report provides a review of the complex and diverse ways that woody plants survive in the frost dominated environment of the alpine life zone.

  15. Climate change links fate of glaciers and an endemic alpine invertebrate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhlfeld, Clint C.; Giersch, J. Joseph; Hauer, F. Richard; Pederson, Gregory T.; Luikart, Gordon; Peterson, Douglas P.; Downs, Christopher C.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2011-01-01

    Climate warming in the mid- to high-latitudes and high-elevation mountainous regions is occurring more rapidly than anywhere else on Earth, causing extensive loss of glaciers and snowpack. However, little is known about the effects of climate change on alpine stream biota, especially invertebrates. Here, we show a strong linkage between regional climate change and the fundamental niche of a rare aquatic invertebrate—themeltwater stonefly Lednia tumana—endemic toWaterton- Glacier International Peace Park, Canada and USA. L. tumana has been petitioned for listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act due to climate-change-induced glacier loss, yet little is known on specifically how climate impacts may threaten this rare species and many other enigmatic alpine aquatic species worldwide. During 14 years of research, we documented that L. tumana inhabits a narrow distribution, restricted to short sections (∼500 m) of cold, alpine streams directly below glaciers, permanent snowfields, and springs. Our simulation models suggest that climate change threatens the potential future distribution of these sensitive habitats and persistence of L. tumana through the loss of glaciers and snowfields. Mountaintop aquatic invertebrates are ideal early warning indicators of climate warming in mountain ecosystems. Research on alpine invertebrates is urgently needed to avoid extinctions and ecosystem change.

  16. Instability of a highly vulnerable high alpine rock ridge: the lower Arête des Cosmiques (Mont Blanc massif, France)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravanel, L.; Deline, P.; Lambiel, C.; Vincent, C.

    2012-04-01

    Glacier retreat and permafrost degradation are actually more and more thought to explain the increasing instability of rock slopes and rock ridges in high mountain environments. Hot summers with numerous rockfalls we experienced over the last two decades in the Alps have indeed contributed to test/strengthen the hypothesis of a strong correlation between rockfalls and global warming through these two cryospheric factors. Rockfalls from recently deglaciated and/or thawing areas may have very important economic and social implications for high mountain infrastructures and be a fatal hazard for mountaineers. At high mountain sites characterized by infrastructures that can be affected by rockfalls, the monitoring of rock slopes, permafrost and glaciers is thus an essential element for the sustainability of the infrastructure and for the knowledge/management of risks. Our study focuses on a particularly active area of the Mont Blanc massif (France), the lower Arête des Cosmiques, on which is located the very popular Refuge des Cosmiques (3613 m a.s.l.). Since 1998, when a rockfall threatened a part of the refuge and forced to major stabilizing works, observations allowed to identify 10 detachments (20 m3 to > 1000 m3), especially on the SE face of the ridge. Since 2009, this face is yearly surveyed by terrestrial laser scanning to obtain high-resolution 3D models. Their diachronic comparison gives precise measurements of the evolution of the rock slope. Eight rock detachments have thus been documented (0.7 m3 to 256.2 m3). Rock temperature measurements at the ridge and the close Aiguille du Midi (3842 m a.s.l.), and observations of the evolution of the underlying Glacier du Géant have enable to better understand the origin of the strong dynamics of this highly vulnerable area: (i) rock temperature data suggest the presence of warm permafrost (i.e. close to 0°C) from the first meters to depth in the SE face, and cold permafrost in the NW face; (ii) as suggested by the

  17. Consequences for selected high-elevation butterflies and moths from the spread of Pinus mugo into the alpine zone in the High Sudetes Mountains

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bílá, Karolína; Šipoš, Jan; Kindlmann, Pavel; Kuras, T.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 4, JUN (2016), č. článku e2094. ISSN 2167-8359 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415; GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : hruby jesenik mts * erebia-epiphron * species richness * lepidoptera * population * europe * assemblages * vegetation * gradients * patterns * Afforestation * Alpine tundra * Lepidoptera * Dwarf pine * Postglacial development * Central European mountains * Biodiversity loss Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.177, year: 2016

  18. Comparative Transcriptome Analysis Reveals Adaptive Evolution of Notopterygium incisum and Notopterygium franchetii, Two High-Alpine Herbal Species Endemic to China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun Jia

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The extreme conditions (e.g., cold, low oxygen, and strong ultraviolet radiation of the high mountains provide an ideal natural laboratory for studies on speciation and the adaptive evolution of organisms. Up to now, few genome/transcriptome-based studies have been carried out on how plants adapt to conditions at extremely high altitudes. Notopterygium incisum and Notopterygium franchetii (Notopterygium, Apiaceae are two endangered high-alpine herbal plants endemic to China. To explore the molecular genetic mechanisms of adaptation to high altitudes, we performed high-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq to characterize the transcriptomes of the two species. In total, more than 130 million sequence reads, 81,446 and 63,153 unigenes with total lengths of 86,924,837 and 62,615,693 bp, were generated for the two herbal species, respectively. OrthoMCL analysis identified 6375 single-copy orthologous genes between N. incisum and N. franchetii. In total, 381 positively-selected candidate genes were identified for both plants by using estimations of the non-synonymous to synonymous substitution rate. At least 18 of these genes potentially participate in RNA splicing, DNA repair, glutathione metabolism and the plant–pathogen interaction pathway, which were further enriched in various functional gene categories possibly responsible for environment adaptation in high mountains. Meanwhile, we detected various transcription factors that regulated the material and energy metabolism in N. incisum and N. franchetii, which probably play vital roles in the tolerance to stress in surroundings. In addition, 60 primer pairs based on orthologous microsatellite-containing sequences between the both Notopterygium species were determined. Finally, 17 polymorphic microsatellite markers (SSR were successfully characterized for the two endangered species. Based on these candidate orthologous and SSR markers, we detected that the adaptive evolution and species divergence

  19. Integrating the EMPD with an Alpine altitudinal training set to reconstruct climate variables in Holocene pollen records from high-altitude peat bogs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furlanetto, Giulia; Badino, Federica; Brunetti, Michele; Champvillair, Elena; De Amicis, Mattia; Maggi, Valter; Pini, Roberta; Ravazzi, Cesare; Vallé, Francesca

    2016-04-01

    Temperatures and precipitation are the main environmental factors influencing vegetation and pollen production. Knowing the modern climate optima and tolerances of those plants represented in fossil assemblages and assuming that the relationships between plants and climate in the past are not dissimilar from the modern ones, fossil pollen records offer many descriptors to reconstruct past climate variables. The aim of our work is to investigate the potential of high-altitude pollen records from an Alpine peat bog (TBValter, close to the Ruitor Glacier, Western Italian Alps) for quantitative paleoclimate estimates. The idea behind is that high-altitude ecosystems are more sensitive to climate changes, especially to changes in July temperatures that severely affect the timberline ecotone. Meantime, we met with difficulties when considering the factors involved in pollen dispersal over a complex altitudinal mountain pattern, such as the Alps. We used the EMPD-European Modern Pollen Database (Davis et al., 2013) as modern training set to be compared with our high-altitude fossil site. The EMPD dataset is valuable in that it provides a large geographic coverage of main ecological and climate gradients (at sub-continental scale) but lacks in sampling of altitudinal gradients and high-altitude sites in the Alps. We therefore designed an independent altitudinal training set for the alpine valley hosting our fossil site. 27 sampling plots were selected along a 1700m-elevational transect. In a first step, each plot was provided with (i) 3 moss polsters collected following the guidelines provided by Cañellas-Boltà et al. (2009) and analyzed separately to account for differences in pollen deposition at small scale, (ii) morphometrical parameters obtained through a high-resolution DEM, and (iii) temperature and precipitation were estimated by means of weighted linear regression of the meteorological variable versus elevation, locally evaluated for each site (Brunetti et al

  20. The potential for retreating alpine glaciers to alter alpine ecosystems in the Colorado Front Range

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, E.; Baron, J.

    2013-12-01

    Glaciers are retreating at an unprecedented rate. In mid-latitude alpine ecosystems the presence of glaciers and rock glaciers govern rates and ecology of alpine and sub-alpine ecosystems. Changes in the thermal environment due to the loss of isothermal habitat and inputs from glacier melt chemistry are altering alpine ecosystems in unpredictable ways. In particular, glacier may be a source of nitrogen that is altering alpine ecosystem dynamics. Loch Vale Watershed (LVWS) located within Rocky Mountain National Park. LVWS contains a surface glacier (Andrew's glacier) and a rock glacier (Taylor's glacier) at the headwater of each of the two drainages within the watershed. We collected precipitation from a National Atmospheric Deposition Site and surface water from multiple alpine lakes and streams during a particularly high and low snow year in the Colorado Front Range. We also sampled stream and lake sediments at each site to analyze the associated microbial community. Concentrations of nitrate and ammonium, relative abundance of amoA (the gene responsible for a key step in the microbial nitrification pathway), and the dual isotope signal to nitrate all point to snow melt as a key deliverer of nitrogen to ecosystems along the Colorado Front Range. However, late summer surface water chemistry is isotopically similar to the chemistry of glacial ice. This suggests that retreating glacier may be an additional source of N to alpine ecosystems and have the potential to alter microbial community composition, biogeochemical rate processes, and ecosystem function. These dynamics are most likely not unique to the Colorado Front Range and should be globally distributed as glaciers continue to retreat in high altitude ecosystems around the world.

  1. Characterization of primary biogenic aerosol particles in urban, rural, and high-alpine air by DNA sequence and restriction fragment analysis of ribosomal RNA genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. R. Després

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available This study explores the applicability of DNA analyses for the characterization of primary biogenic aerosol (PBA particles in the atmosphere. Samples of fine particulate matter (PM2.5 and total suspended particulates (TSP have been collected on different types of filter materials at urban, rural, and high-alpine locations along an altitude transect in the south of Germany (Munich, Hohenpeissenberg, Mt. Zugspitze.

    From filter segments loaded with about one milligram of air particulate matter, DNA could be extracted and DNA sequences could be determined for bacteria, fungi, plants and animals. Sequence analyses were used to determine the identity of biological organisms, and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analyses (T-RFLP were applied to estimate diversities and relative abundances of bacteria. Investigations of blank and background samples showed that filter materials have to be decontaminated prior to use, and that the sampling and handling procedures have to be carefully controlled to avoid artifacts in the analyses.

    Mass fractions of DNA in PM2.5 were found to be around 0.05% in urban, rural, and high-alpine aerosols. The average concentration of DNA determined for urban air was on the order of ~7 ng m−3, indicating that human adults may inhale about one microgram of DNA per day (corresponding to ~108 haploid bacterial genomes or ~105 haploid human genomes, respectively.

    Most of the bacterial sequences found in PM2.5 were from Proteobacteria (42 and some from Actinobacteria (10 and Firmicutes (1. The fungal sequences were characteristic for Ascomycota (3 and Basidiomycota (1, which are known to actively discharge spores into the atmosphere. The plant sequences could be attributed to green plants (2 and moss spores (2, while animal DNA was found only for one unicellular eukaryote (protist.

  2. Le tourisme alpin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Macchiavelli

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available La forte croissance qu’ont connue les pays alpins dans les dernières décennies a surtout été fondée sur l’offre des activités du ski, avec comme conséquence, un massif développement immobilier, la multiplication d’infrastructures et l’extension des domaines. Aujourd’hui, le marché du ski semble arriver à saturation, la Convention alpine a mis un frein à la poursuite du développement des domaines skiables et on observe donc avec intérêt la diversification de l’offre soutenue par l’innovation. Après avoir rappelé les facteurs de changement en cours les plus significatifs dans le tourisme montagnard, l’article présente une grille interprétative de l’évolution des destinations touristiques alpines, identifiant les phases qui ont caractérisé son développement. Puis il propose une réflexion sur certaines conditions qui peuvent favoriser l’innovation dans le tourisme alpin, ainsi que sur les contradictions qui les accompagnent souvent. Dans la plupart des cas l’innovation est le résultat d’un processus qui a été lancé et qui s’est développé au sein de la communauté alpine, souvent favorisé et soutenu par des institutions nationales et internationales, et grâce auquel les difficultés structurelles qui ont déjà été abordées précédemment ont pu être surmontées avec succès.The spectacular increase in tourism in the Alps in recent decades has been founded mainly on the boom in skiing, resulting in both strong real estate development and an increasing array of infrastructures and ski runs. Today the ski market seems to have virtually reached saturation point and the winter sports sector needs to diversify its offer through innovation. After a review of the main factors of change in mountain tourism, the paper presents a grid for interpreting the life cycle of alpine destinations, identifying the phases that characterize their evolution. The conditions that may favour innovation in alpine

  3. Characterisation of alpine skis

    OpenAIRE

    Wikerman, Fredrik

    2016-01-01

    Skiing is a fast and competitive sport where skiers must push their performance limit to win medals, the di↵erence can be within hundreds of a second. Therefore, technical improvements are essential for assisting in the skier’s improvement. This thesis project is a joint project between KTH and the Swedish Ski Association and Swedish Ski Team with the purpose of obtaining a better understanding of the structural properties of alpine skis, aiming to improve the individual selection process of ...

  4. Dendrochronological potential of the alpine shrub Rhododendron nivale on the south-eastern Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Eryuan; Eckstein, Dieter

    2009-09-01

    Shrubs and dwarf shrubs are wider spread on the Tibetan Plateau than trees and hence offer a unique opportunity to expand the present dendrochronological network into extreme environments beyond the survival limit of trees. Alpine shrublands on the Tibetan Plateau are characterized by rhododendron species. The dendrochronological potential of one alpine rhododendron species and its growth response to the extreme environment on the south-east Tibetan Plateau were investigated. Twenty stem discs of the alpine snowy rhododendron (Rhododendron nivale) were collected close to the tongue of the Zuoqiupu Glacier in south-east Tibet, China. The skeleton plot technique was used for inter-comparison between samples to detect the growth pattern of each stem section. The ring-width chronology was developed by fitting a negative exponential function or a straight line of any slope. Bootstrapping correlations were calculated between the standard chronology and monthly climate data. The wood of snowy rhododendron is diffuse-porous with evenly distributed small-diameter vessels. It has well-defined growth rings. Most stem sections can be visually and statistically cross-dated. The resulting 75-year-long standard ring-width chronology is highly correlated with a timberline fir chronology about 200 km apart, providing a high degree of confidence in the cross-dating. The climate/growth association of alpine snowy rhododendron and of this timberline fir is similar, reflecting an impact of monthly mean minimum temperatures in November of the previous year and in July during the year of ring formation. The alpine snowy rhododendron offers new research directions to investigate the environmental history of the Tibetan Plateau in those regions where up to now there was no chance of applying dendrochronology.

  5. How cushion communities are maintained in alpine ecosystems: A review and case study on alpine cushion plant reproduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianguo Chen

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Cushion species occur in nearly all alpine environments worldwide. In past decades, the adaptive and ecosystem-engineering roles of such highly specialized life forms have been well studied. However, the adaptive strategies responsible for cushion species reproductive success and maintenance in severe alpine habitats remain largely unclear. In this study, we reviewed the current understanding of reproductive strategies and population persistence in alpine cushion species. We then present a preliminary case study on the sexual reproduction of Arenaria polytrichoides (Caryophyllaceae, a typical cushion species inhabiting high elevations of the Himalaya Hengduan Mountains, which is a hotspot for diversification of cushion species. Finally, we highlight the limitations of our current understanding of alpine cushion species reproduction and propose future directions for study.

  6. Anterior cruciate ligament injury/reinjury in alpine ski racing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jordan, Matthew J; Aagaard, Per; Herzog, Walter

    2017-01-01

    and return to sport after ACL injury in alpine ski racing. Given that most of the scientific studies on ACL injuries in alpine ski racing have been descriptive, and that very few studies contributed higher level scientific evidence, a nonsystematic narrative review was employed. Three scholarly databases...... were searched for articles on ACL injury or knee injury in alpine ski racing. Studies were classified according to their relevance in relation to epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and return to sport/reinjury prevention. Alpine ski racers (skiers) were found to be at high risk for knee injuries...... injuries in development-level skiers, there was limited scientific data on ACL injury risk factors among elite skiers. Based on expert opinion, research on injury risk factors should focus on equipment design, course settings/speed, and athlete factors (eg, fitness). While skiers seem to make a successful...

  7. Sensitivity estimations for cloud droplet formation in the vicinity of the high-alpine research station Jungfraujoch (3580 m a.s.l.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Hammer

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Aerosol radiative forcing estimates suffer from large uncertainties as a result of insufficient understanding of aerosol–cloud interactions. The main source of these uncertainties is dynamical processes such as turbulence and entrainment but also key aerosol parameters such as aerosol number concentration and size distribution, and to a much lesser extent, the composition. From June to August 2011 a Cloud and Aerosol Characterization Experiment (CLACE2011 was performed at the high-alpine research station Jungfraujoch (Switzerland, 3580 m a.s.l. focusing on the activation of aerosol to form liquid-phase clouds (in the cloud base temperature range of −8 to 5 °C. With a box model the sensitivity of the effective peak supersaturation (SSpeak, an important parameter for cloud activation, to key aerosol and dynamical parameters was investigated. The updraft velocity, which defines the cooling rate of an air parcel, was found to have the greatest influence on SSpeak. Small-scale variations in the cooling rate with large amplitudes can significantly alter CCN activation. Thus, an accurate knowledge of the air parcel history is required to estimate SSpeak. The results show that the cloud base updraft velocities estimated from the horizontal wind measurements made at the Jungfraujoch can be divided by a factor of approximately 4 to get the updraft velocity required for the model to reproduce the observed SSpeak. The aerosol number concentration and hygroscopic properties were found to be less important than the aerosol size in determining SSpeak. Furthermore turbulence is found to have a maximum influence when SSpeak is between approximately 0.2 and 0.4 %. Simulating the small-scale fluctuations with several amplitudes, frequencies and phases, revealed that independently of the amplitude, the effect of the frequency on SSpeak shows a maximum at 0.46 Hz (median over all phases and at higher frequencies, the maximum SSpeak decreases again.

  8. Isotope Investigations at an Alpine Karst Aquifer by Means of On-Site Measurements with High Time Resolution and Near Real-Time Data Availability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leis, A.; Plieschnegger, M.; Harum, T.; Stadler, H.; Schmitt, R.; Pelt, A. Van; Zerobin, W.

    2011-01-01

    For numerous hydrological investigations as the characterization of storage and discharge dynamics at karst springs on-site isotopic measurements with high time resolution could improve the significance of the investigations. Conventional isotope ratio mass spectrometers (IRMS) can only be used in laboratories because of their technical complexity. Since a short time more compact laser based instruments, the so called cavity ringdown spectrometers (CRDS) are commercially available. For on-site use of such an instrument several adaptations are necessary. This concerns especially a direct sample injection from the outflow of the spring, because this is originally not intended. The studied alpine and mountainous karst system is located in the so called Northern Calcareous Alps in Austria reaching altitudes up to approx. 2300 masl. The spring is situated in the Salza-valley at an altitude of approximately 650 masl. The investigated karst spring is a typical limestone spring type according to having well developed karst conduits. The isotopic composition of the water samples were measured by using cavity ring-down spectroscopy with a WS-CRDS (Wavelength-Scanned Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy) instrument (Picarro, Inc.). In order to adapt the System for on-site isotope measurements at the spring the laser spectrometer was coupled to an automatic injection module for continuous measurements of liquid samples based on a VALCO valve. The device replaces the auto-sampler and allows quasi-continuous injections of a 2 ul-water samples into the Picarro L1102-iso-water analyzer via the Picarro vaporizer module.

  9. Concentrations of higher dicarboxylic acids C5–C13 in fresh snow samples collected at the High Alpine Research Station Jungfraujoch during CLACE 5 and 6

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Sieg

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Samples of freshly fallen snow were collected at the high alpine research station Jungfraujoch (Switzerland in February and March 2006 and 2007, during the Cloud and Aerosol Characterization Experiments (CLACE 5 and 6. In this study a new technique has been developed and demonstrated for the measurement of organic acids in fresh snow. The melted snow samples were subjected to solid phase extraction and resulting solutions analysed for organic acids by HPLC-MS-TOF using negative electrospray ionization. A series of linear dicarboxylic acids from C5 to C13 and phthalic acid, were identified and quantified. In several samples the biogenic acid pinonic acid was also observed. In fresh snow the median concentration of the most abundant acid, adipic acid, was 0.69 μg L−1 in 2006 and 0.70 μg L−1 in 2007. Glutaric acid was the second most abundant dicarboxylic acid found with median values of 0.46 μg L−1 in 2006 and 0.61 μg L−1 in 2007, while the aromatic acid phthalic acid showed a median concentration of 0.34 μg L−1 in 2006 and 0.45 μg L−1 in 2007. The concentrations in the samples from various snowfall events varied significantly, and were found to be dependent on the back trajectory of the air mass arriving at Jungfraujoch. Air masses of marine origin showed the lowest concentrations of acids whereas the highest concentrations were measured when the air mass was strongly influenced by boundary layer air.

  10. Vascular plant flora of the alpine zone in the southern Rocky Mountains, U.S.A

    Science.gov (United States)

    James F. Fowler; B. E. Nelson; Ronald L. Hartman

    2014-01-01

    Field detection of changes in occurrence, distribution, or abundance of alpine plant species is predicated on knowledge of which species are in specific locations. The alpine zone of the Southern Rocky Mountain Region has been systematically inventoried by the staff and floristics graduate students from the Rocky Mountain Herbarium over the last 27 years. It is...

  11. Drivers of spatial heterogeneity in nitrogen processing among three alpine plant communities in the Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Churchill, A. C.; Beers, A.; Grinath, J.; Bowman, W. D.

    2017-12-01

    Nitrogen cycling across the globe has been fundamentally altered due to regional elevated N deposition and there is a cascade of ecosystem consequences including shifts in species composition, eutrophication, and soil acidification. Making predictions that encompass the factors that drive these ecosystem changes has frequently been limited to single ecosystem types, or areas with fairly homogenous abiotic conditions. The alpine is an ecosystem type that exhibits changes under relatively low levels of N depositions due to short growing seasons and shallow soils limiting N storage. While recent work provided estimates for the magnitude of N associated with ecosystem changes, less is known about the within-site factors that may interact to stabilize or amplify the differential response of N pools under future conditions of resource deposition. To examine numerous potential within-site and regional factors (both biotic and abiotic) affecting ecosystem N pools we examined the relationship between those factors and a suite of ecosystem pools of N followed by model selection procedures and structural equation modelling. Measurements were conducted at Niwot Ridge Long Term Ecological Research site and in Rocky Mountain National Park in three distinct alpine meadow ecosystems (dry, moist, and wet meadows). These meadows span a moisture gradient as well as plant community composition, thereby providing high variability of potential biotic and abiotic drivers across small spatial scales in the alpine. In general, regional scale abiotic factors such as site levels of annual average N deposition or precipitation were poor predictors of seasonal pools of N, while spring soil water pools of N were negatively correlated with elevation. Models containing multiple abiotic and biotic drivers, however, were best at predicting soil and plant pools of N across the two sites. Future analysis will include highlight interactions among with-site factors affecting N pools in the alpine using

  12. Alpine glacial topography and the rate of rock column uplift

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Vivi Kathrine; Egholm, D.L.; Nielsen, S.B.

    2010-01-01

    The present study investigates the influence of alpine glacial erosion on the morphology and relief distribution of mountain regions associated with varying rock column uplift rates. We take a global approach and analyse the surface area distribution of all mountain regions affected by glacial er...

  13. Semenic Mountains’ alpine skiing area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petru BANIAȘ

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The present paper presents, after a short history of alpine skiing which describes apparition, necessity, utility and universality of skiing during time, a comparative study referring to the alpine skiing domain in the Semenic Mountains area. In the paper are also presented general notions about alpine skiing methodology together with an ample description of the plateau area form Semenic Mountains, describing localization and touristic potential. Based on the SWOT analysis made for each slope, was realized a complex analysis of the entire skiing domain, an analysis which includes technical, financial, climatic and environmental aspects, along with an analysis of the marketing policy applied for the specific zone.

  14. Frozen Nature - A high-alpine ice core record reveals fire and vegetation dynamics in Western Europe over the past millennium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brügger, S.; Gobet, E.; Sigl, M.; Osmont, D.; Schwikowski, M.; Tinner, W.

    2017-12-01

    Wild fires are an ecological disturbance agent across ecosystems, driving vegetation dynamics and resulting in disruption of habitats (Moritz et al. 2014).We analyze pollen and spores as proxies for vegetation composition, structure and agricultural activity, microscopic charcoal as a proxy for fire activity, and spheroidal carbonaceous particles (SCPs or soots) as a proxy for fossil fuel combustion which preserve in ice cores over millennia (Eichler et al. 2011).Our high-alpine ice core (4452 m a.s.l.) from Colle Gnifetti, Swiss Alps is located in the center of Western Europe, thus allowing to assess vegetation and societal responses to climatic change and wildfire disturbance on a subcontinental scale. The record covers the last millennium with an excellent chronological control (Jenk et al. 2009, Sigl et al. 2009), particularly over the most recent 200 years - the period that experienced important climatic changes and an increasing globalization of economy.The Colle Gnifetti record reflects large scale impacts such as extreme weather, societal innovations, agricultural crises and pollution of the industrial period in Western Europe. Pollution tracers occur in the record as early as 1750 AD and coincide with the shift to large-scale maize production in Northern Italy and with increased fire activity. Our multiproxy record may allow desentagling the role of climate and humans for vegetation composition and biomass burning. The attribution of causes may significantly advance our understanding of future vegetation and fire dynamics under global change conditions. To our knowledge we present the first long-term high-resolution palynological record of a high elevation ice core in Europe.REFERENCESEichler et al. (2011): An ice-core based history of Siberian forest fires since AD 1250. Quaternary Science Reviews, 30(9), 1027-1034.Jenk et al. (2009): A novel radiocarbon dating technique applied to an ice core from the Alps indicating late Pleistocene ages. Journal of

  15. Signatures of Late Pleistocene fluvial incision in an Alpine landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Fox, Matthew; Moore, Jeffrey R.

    2018-02-01

    Uncertainty regarding the relative efficacy of fluvial and glacial erosion has hindered attempts to quantitatively analyse the Pleistocene evolution of alpine landscapes. Here we show that the morphology of major tributaries of the Rhone River, Switzerland, is consistent with that predicted for a landscape shaped primarily by multiple phases of fluvial incision following a period of intense glacial erosion after the mid-Pleistocene transition (∼0.7 Ma). This is despite major ice sheets reoccupying the region during cold intervals since the mid-Pleistocene. We use high-resolution LiDAR data to identify a series of convex reaches within the long-profiles of 18 tributary channels. We propose these reaches represent knickpoints, which developed as regional uplift raised tributary bedrock channels above the local fluvial baselevel during glacial intervals, and migrated upstream as the fluvial system was re-established during interglacial periods. Using a combination of integral long-profile analysis and stream-power modelling, we find that the locations of ∼80% of knickpoints in our study region are consistent with that predicted for a fluvial origin, while the mean residual error over ∼100 km of modelled channels is just 26.3 m. Breaks in cross-valley profiles project toward the elevation of former end-of-interglacial channel elevations, supporting our model results. Calculated long-term uplift rates are within ∼15% of present-day measurements, while modelled rates of bedrock incision range from ∼1 mm/yr for low gradient reaches between knickpoints to ∼6-10 mm/yr close to retreating knickpoints, typical of observed rates in alpine settings. Together, our results reveal approximately 800 m of regional uplift, river incision, and hillslope erosion in the lower half of each tributary catchment since 0.7 Ma.

  16. Effects of climate and socio-economic changes on water availability, use and management at the regional scale - a case study in the dry inner-alpine zone of Switzerland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weingartner, Rolf; Reynard, Emmanuel; Graefe, Olivier; Liniger, Hanspeter; Rist, Stephan; Schaedler, Bruno; Schneider, Flurina

    2014-05-01

    The research program NRP 61 "Sustainable Water Management" of the Swiss National Science Foundation had set the goal to provide a basis for sustainable water management in Switzerland. As part of this research program the effects of climate and socio-economic changes on water availability, water use and water management were investigated in the Crans-Montana-Sierre region, situated in the dry inner-alpine Valais (project MontanAqua). The project followed an inter- and trans-disciplinary approach; stakeholders were involved from the very beginning. We assessed the current water situation with quantitative and qualitative methods: A dense hydro-meteorological network was built-up, tracer experiments were conducted and communal water uses as well as the current water management system were analyzed. These investigations paved the way to develop models to simulate possible changes in the near and far future. For this purpose, we applied existing regional climate change scenarios and developed socio-economic scenarios together with the stakeholders. The findings of MontanAqua can be summarized into five messages, each with a short recommendation: 1 - The socio-economic changes have a greater impact on the water situation in 2050 than climate change: A territorial development that limits water needs is recommended. This requires important changes of current water- and land-management practices. 2 - The water quantities available now and in 2050 are generally sufficient. However, shortages are possible in some areas and seasonally: We recommend establishing a regional water management which goes beyond the development of technical infrastructure such as storage facilities or connections between water supply networks. This measure should be accompanied by a clarification and negotiation of water rights at the regional level. 3 - Water issues are primarily regional management problems: We advocate for better cooperation between the eleven municipalities of the region and

  17. Glacial refugia, recolonization patterns and diversification forces in Alpine-endemic Megabunus harvestmen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachter, Gregor A; Papadopoulou, Anna; Muster, Christoph; Arthofer, Wolfgang; Knowles, L Lacey; Steiner, Florian M; Schlick-Steiner, Birgit C

    2016-06-01

    The Pleistocene climatic fluctuations had a huge impact on all life forms, and various hypotheses regarding the survival of organisms during glacial periods have been postulated. In the European Alps, evidence has been found in support of refugia outside the ice shield (massifs de refuge) acting as sources for postglacial recolonization of inner-Alpine areas. In contrast, evidence for survival on nunataks, ice-free areas above the glacier, remains scarce. Here, we combine multivariate genetic analyses with ecological niche models (ENMs) through multiple timescales to elucidate the history of Alpine Megabunus harvestmen throughout the ice ages, a genus that comprises eight high-altitude endemics. ENMs suggest two types of refugia throughout the last glacial maximum, inner-Alpine survival on nunataks for four species and peripheral refugia for further four species. In some geographic regions, the patterns of genetic variation are consistent with long-distance dispersal out of massifs de refuge, repeatedly coupled with geographic parthenogenesis. In other regions, long-term persistence in nunataks may dominate the patterns of genetic divergence. Overall, our results suggest that glacial cycles contributed to allopatric diversification in Alpine Megabunus, both within and at the margins of the ice shield. These findings exemplify the power of ENM projections coupled with genetic analyses to identify hypotheses about the position and the number of glacial refugia and thus to evaluate the role of Pleistocene glaciations in driving species-specific responses of recolonization or persistence that may have contributed to observed patterns of biodiversity. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Animal Fascioliasis: Perspectives from high altitudinal regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyngdoh, Damanbha; Sharma, Sunil; Roy, Bishnupada; Tandon, Veena

    2016-12-15

    The parasitic flukes of the genus Fasciola (Platyhelminthes: Trematoda: Digenea) cause fascioliasis or liver-rot disease in ruminant livestock in tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. Classically, two species of Fasciola- F. hepatica and F. gigantica, are universally recognized as taxonomically valid species. Our survey studies on ovid and bovid animals including yak and mithun from high altitudinal mountainous regions in Northeast India revealed the occurrence of Fasciola gigantica and also Fasciola sp.- an intermediate form, at altitudes between 5000 and 14,085 feet above sea level (asl). Two morphotypes- F. hepatica - like and F. gigantica - like, of Fasciola species were reported from the high altitudinal areas of Northeast India; most of these locales constitute new-locality and first records for the occurrence of these liver flukes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. The microbially mediated soil organic carbon loss under degenerative succession in an alpine meadow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuguang; Liu, Xiao; Cong, Jing; Lu, Hui; Sheng, Yuyu; Wang, Xiulei; Li, Diqiang; Liu, Xueduan; Yin, Huaqun; Zhou, Jizhong; Deng, Ye

    2017-07-01

    Land-cover change has long been recognized as having marked effect on the amount of soil organic carbon (SOC). However, the microbially mediated processes and mechanisms on SOC are still unclear. In this study, the soil samples in a degenerative succession from alpine meadow to alpine steppe meadow in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau were analysed using high-throughput technologies, including Illumina sequencing and geochip functional gene arrays. The soil microbial community structure and diversity were significantly (p carbon degradation genes (e.g., pectin and hemicellulose) was significantly higher in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow, but the relative abundance of soil recalcitrant carbon degradation genes (e.g., chitin and lignin) showed the opposite tendency. The Biolog Ecoplate experiment showed that microbially mediated soil carbon utilization was more active in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow. Consequently, more soil labile carbon might be decomposed in alpine steppe meadow than in alpine meadow. Therefore, the degenerative succession of alpine meadow because of climate change or anthropogenic activities would most likely decrease SOC and nutrients medicated by changing soil microbial community structure and their functional potentials for carbon decomposition. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Highlighting High Performance: Whitman Hanson Regional High School; Whitman, Massachusetts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2006-06-01

    This brochure describes the key high-performance building features of the Whitman-Hanson Regional High School. The brochure was paid for by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative as part of their Green Schools Initiative. High-performance features described are daylighting and energy-efficient lighting, indoor air quality, solar and wind energy, building envelope, heating and cooling systems, water conservation, and acoustics. Energy cost savings are also discussed.

  1. Regional approaches in high-rise construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iconopisceva, O. G.; Proskurin, G. A.

    2018-03-01

    The evolutionary process of high-rise construction is in the article focus. The aim of the study was to create a retrospective matrix reflecting the tasks of the study such as: structuring the most iconic high-rise objects within historic boundaries. The study is based on contemporary experience of high-rise construction in different countries. The main directions and regional specifics in the field of high-rise construction as well as factors influencing the further evolution process are analyzed. The main changes in architectural stylistics, form-building, constructive solutions that focus on the principles of energy efficiency and bio positivity of "sustainable buildings", as well as the search for a new typology are noted. The most universal constructive methods and solutions that turned out to be particularly popular are generalized. The new typology of high-rises and individual approach to urban context are noted. The results of the study as a graphical scheme made it possible to represent the whole high-rise evolution. The new spatial forms of high-rises lead them to new role within the urban environments. Futuristic hyperscalable concepts take the autonomous urban space functions itself and demonstrate us how high-rises can replace multifunctional urban fabric, developing it inside their shells.

  2. Characterization of the shallow groundwater system in an alpine watershed: Handcart Gulch, Colorado, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahn, Katherine G.; Ge, Shemin; Caine, Jonathan S.; Manning, A.

    2008-01-01

    Water-table elevation measurements and aquifer parameter estimates are rare in alpine settings because few wells exist in these environments. Alpine groundwater systems may be a primary source of recharge to regional groundwater flow systems. Handcart Gulch is an alpine watershed in Colorado, USA comprised of highly fractured Proterozoic metamorphic and igneous rocks with wells completed to various depths. Primary study objectives include determining hydrologic properties of shallow bedrock and surficial materials, developing a watershed water budget, and testing the consistency of measured hydrologic properties and water budget by constructing a simple model incorporating groundwater and surface water for water year 2005. Water enters the study area as precipitation and exits as discharge in the trunk stream or potential recharge for the deeper aquifer. Surficial infiltration rates ranged from 0.1-6.2??0-5 m/s. Discharge was estimated at 1.28??10-3 km3. Numerical modeling analysis of single-well aquifer tests predicted lower specific storage in crystalline bedrock than in ferricrete and colluvial material (6.7??10-5-2.10??0-3 l/m). Hydraulic conductivity in crystalline bedrock was significantly lower than in colluvial and alluvial material (4.3??10-9 -2.0??10-4 m/s). Water budget results suggest that during normal precipitation and temperatures water is available to recharge the deeper groundwater flow system. ?? Springer-Verlag 2007.

  3. Vegetation Changes in the Permafrost Regions of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau from 1982-2012: Different Responses Related to Geographical Locations and Vegetation Types in High-Altitude Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiwei Wang

    Full Text Available The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP contains the largest permafrost area in a high-altitude region in the world, and the unique hydrothermal environments of the active layers in this region have an important impact on vegetation growth. Geographical locations present different climatic conditions, and in combination with the permafrost environments, these conditions comprehensively affect the local vegetation activity. Therefore, the responses of vegetation to climate change in the permafrost region of the QTP may be varied differently by geographical location and vegetation condition. In this study, using the latest Global Inventory Modeling and Mapping Studies (GIMMS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI product based on turning points (TPs, which were calculated using a piecewise linear model, 9 areas within the permafrost region of the QTP were selected to investigate the effect of geographical location and vegetation type on vegetation growth from 1982 to 2012. The following 4 vegetation types were observed in the 9 selected study areas: alpine swamp meadow, alpine meadow, alpine steppe and alpine desert. The research results show that, in these study areas, TPs mainly appeared in 2000 and 2001, and almost 55.1% and 35.0% of the TPs were located in 2000 and 2001. The global standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI and 7 meteorological variables were selected to analyze their correlations with NDVI. We found that the main correlative variables to vegetation productivity in study areas from 1982 to 2012 were precipitation, surface downward long-wave radiation and temperature. Furthermore, NDVI changes exhibited by different vegetation types within the same study area followed similar trends. The results show that regional effects rather than vegetation type had a larger impact on changes in vegetation growth in the permafrost regions of the QTP, indicating that climatic factors had a larger impact in the permafrost

  4. Alpine cloud climatology using long-term NOAA-AVHRR satellite data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaestner, M.; Kriebel, K.T.

    2000-07-01

    Three different climates have been identified by our evaluation of AVHRR (advanced very high resolution radiometer) data using APOLLO (AVHRR processing scheme over land, clouds and ocean) for a five-years cloud climatology of the Alpine region. The cloud cover data from four layers were spatially averaged in boxes of 15 km by 14 km. The study area only comprises 540 km by 560 km, but contains regions with moderate, Alpine and Mediterranean climate. Data from the period July 1989 until December 1996 have been considered. The temporal resolution is one scene per day, the early afternoon pass, yielding monthly means of satellite derived cloud coverages 5% to 10% above the daily mean compared to conventional surface observation. At nonvegetated sites the cloudiness is sometimes significantly overestimated. Averaging high resolution cloud data seems to be superior to low resolution measurements of cloud properties and averaging is favourable in topographical homogeneous regions only. The annual course of cloud cover reveals typical regional features as foehn or temporal singularities as the so-called Christmas thaw. The cloud cover maps in spatially high resolution show local luff/lee features which outline the orography. Less cloud cover is found over the Alps than over the forelands in winter, an accumulation of thick cirrus is found over the High Alps and an accumulation of thin cirrus north of the Alps. (orig.)

  5. Methods for measuring arctic and alpine shrub growth: A review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Myers-Smith, I.H.; Hallinger, M.; Blok, D.; Sass-Klaassen, U.G.W.; Rayback, S.A.

    2015-01-01

    Shrubs have increased in abundance and dominance in arctic and alpine regions in recent decades. This often dramatic change, likely due to climate warming, has the potential to alter both the structure and function of tundra ecosystems. The analysis of shrub growth is improving our understanding of

  6. High-intensification regions of gravitational lenses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Benson, J.R.; Cooke, J.H.

    1979-01-01

    We examine the intensification, I, near the singular points in the object plane of an extended spherical gravitational lens. Geometrical optics predicts an infinite I for a point object located on a singularity. The function I, however, turns out to be integrable over the object plane. We make a detailed physical optics calculation for I. No singularities appear, and there are some interesting, marginally detectable diffraction phenomena. The two types of bright regions, the ''halo'' and the ''spike,'' behave very differently. Simple order-of-magnitude expressions give estimates for the brightness and duration of a high-intensification event

  7. Research on the sewage treatment in high altitude region based on Lhasa Sewage Treatment Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Jin; Li, Shuwen

    2017-12-01

    Sewage treatment is of great significance to enhance environmental quality, consolidate pollution prevention and ecological protection, and ensure sustainable economic and social development in high altitude region. However, there are numerous difficulties in sewage treatment due to the alpine climate, the relatively low economic development level, and the backward operation and management styles, etc. In this study, the characteristics of influent quality in the sewage treatment plant in Lhasa are investigated by analysing the influent BOD5/COD and BOD5/TN, comparing key indexes recorded from 2014 to 2016 with the hinterland. Results show that the concentration of influent COD, BOD5, NH3-N and SS in the Lhasa sewage treatment plant, in which the sewage belongs to low-concentration urban sewage, is smaller than that in the domestic sewage treatment plants in the mainland. The concentration ratio of BOD5/COD and BOD5/TN is below 0.4 and 4, which indicates that the biodegradation is poor and the carbon sources are in bad demand. The consequences obtained play a vital role in the design, operation and management of sewage treatment plants in high altitude region.

  8. Lake surface water temperatures of European Alpine lakes (1989-2013) based on the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) 1 km data set

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riffler, M.; Wunderle, S.

    2014-05-01

    Lake water temperature (LWT) is an important driver of lake ecosystems and it has been identified as an indicator of climate change. Thus, the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) lists LWT as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV). Although for some European lakes long in situ time series of LWT do exist, many lakes are not observed or only on a non-regular basis making these observations insufficient for climate monitoring. Satellite data can provide the information needed. However, only few satellite sensors offer the possibility to analyse time series which cover 25 years or more. The Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) is among these and has been flown as a heritage instrument for almost 35 years. It will be carried on for at least ten more years finally offering a unique opportunity for satellite-based climate studies. Herein we present a satellite-based lake surface water temperature (LSWT) data set for European (pre-alpine) water bodies based on the extensive AVHRR 1 km data record (1989-2013) of the Remote Sensing Research Group at the University of Bern. It has been compiled out of AVHRR/2 (NOAA-07, -09, -11, -14) and AVHRR/3 (NOAA-16, -17, -18, -19 and Metop-A) data. The high accuracy needed for climate related studies requires careful pre-processing and consideration of the atmospheric state. Especially data from NOAA-16 and prior satellites were prone to noise, e.g., due to transmission errors or fluctuations in the instrument's thermal state. This has resulted in partly corrupted thermal calibration data and may cause errors of up to several Kelvin in the final resulting LSWT. Thus, a multi-stage correction scheme has been applied to the data to minimize these artefacts. The LSWT retrieval is based on a simulation-based scheme making use of the Radiative Transfer for TOVS (RTTOV) Version 10 together with operational analysis and reanalysis data from the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts. The resulting LSWTs were

  9. Production of high-resolution digital terrain models in mountain regions to support risk assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianfranco Forlani

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Demand for high-accuracy digital terrain models (DTMs in the Alpine region has been steadily increasing in recent years in valleys as well as high mountains. In the former, the determination of the geo-mechanical parameters of rock masses is the main objective; global warming, which causes the retreat of glaciers and the reduction of permafrost, is the main drive of the latter. The consequence is the instability of rock masses in high mountains: new cost-effective monitoring techniques are required to deal with the peculiar characteristics of such environment, delivering results at short notice. After discussing the design and execution of photogrammetric surveys in such areas, with particular reference to block orientation and block control, the paper describes the production of DTMs of rock faces and glacier fronts with light instrumentation and data acquisition techniques, allowing highly automated data processing. To this aim, the PhotoGPS technique and structure from motion algorithms are used to speed up the orientation process, while dense matching area-based correlation techniques are used to generate the DTMs.

  10. The snow vole (Chionomys nivalis) as an appropriate environmental bioindicator in alpine ecosystems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metcheva, Roumiana; Beltcheva, Michaela; Chassovnikarova, Tsenka

    2008-01-01

    The snow vole (Chionomys nivalis, Martins, 1842) is a common species in the Bulgarian high mountains. Its populations are distributed in different altitudes, regions, and keep stable population density. This is the reason the species has been tested as a bioindicator for environmental quality in alpine ecosystems. The cumulative environmental impact in snow vole populations was evaluated using cytogenetical, hematological, ecotoxicological, radiometrical, ecophysiological, and morphophysiological indices. Standard karyotype, chromosomal aberrations, and other diversions have been observed. These investigations reveal that the snow vole is one of the most appropriate species that can be used as a biomonitor for environmental assessment in mountain areas

  11. The snow vole (Chionomys nivalis) as an appropriate environmental bioindicator in alpine ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Metcheva, Roumiana [Institute of Zoology, Bulgarian Academy of Science, 1, Tzar Osvoboditel blvd., Sofia, 1000 Bulgaria (Bulgaria)], E-mail: rummech@yahoo.com; Beltcheva, Michaela; Chassovnikarova, Tsenka [Institute of Zoology, Bulgarian Academy of Science, 1, Tzar Osvoboditel blvd., Sofia, 1000 Bulgaria (Bulgaria)

    2008-03-01

    The snow vole (Chionomys nivalis, Martins, 1842) is a common species in the Bulgarian high mountains. Its populations are distributed in different altitudes, regions, and keep stable population density. This is the reason the species has been tested as a bioindicator for environmental quality in alpine ecosystems. The cumulative environmental impact in snow vole populations was evaluated using cytogenetical, hematological, ecotoxicological, radiometrical, ecophysiological, and morphophysiological indices. Standard karyotype, chromosomal aberrations, and other diversions have been observed. These investigations reveal that the snow vole is one of the most appropriate species that can be used as a biomonitor for environmental assessment in mountain areas.

  12. Meteorological interpretation of clouds or cloud systems appearing on pictures of the Alpine region received from the Earth Resources Technology Satellite (ERTS-1)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piaget, A.

    1973-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Three examples of cloud-interpretation from ERTS-1 pictures are presented. When the wind speed is large enough, the cumuli are found arranged in lines that are in average two kilometers apart from each other. These lines are grouped in lines made of small cumuli and in lines made up of well developed ones. These last lines are fused on the APT picture and appear as single lines. Fog-mapping for a given region is possible if the topography of the region is known. The stratified clouds lying over mountains or in valleys begin to dissolve above the middle of the valleys and not against the slopes. As water shows a weak albedo in the near infrared, wet surfaces will appear darker than their neighborhoods. This feature seems to be confirmed by the dark spot in the north of Bozen (Southern Tyrol) that can be seen on the ERTS-1 picture taken on 31 August 1972.

  13. La recherche alpine aujourd’hui

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Jacques Brun

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Alpine research benefits from several international coordination networks, only one of which – ISCAR (the International Scientific Committee on Research in the Alps – works solely in the Alpine arc. The creation of ISCAR is a consequence of the input and involvement of various Alpine partners around the Alpine Convention. Alpine research now aims to promote an integrated vision of Alpine territories focusing on creating and maintaining spatial and temporal networks of sustainable relationships between humans and the other components of the ecosphere. It combines resource usage with conservation of the biological and cultural diversity that makes up the Alpine identity. This article aims to show: (1 how international Alpine research coordination is organised; (2 the role played by the Alpine Convention as a framework of reference for specifically Alpine research; and (3 the role that the ISCAR international commit-tee and the Interreg “Alpine Space” programmes play in uniting research around territorial challenges relating to biodiversity conservation and territorial development.La recherche sur les Alpes bénéficie de plusieurs réseaux de coordination internationaux dont un seul, le comité international recherche alpine (ISCAR, se consacre exclusivement à l’arc alpin. La création de l’ISCAR est une retombée de la mobilisation des divers partenaires alpins autour de la mise en place de la Convention alpine. Aujourd’hui, la recherche alpine vise à promouvoir une vision intégrée des territoires centrée sur la création et le maintien d’un réseau spatial et temporel de relations durables entre les hommes et les autres composantes de l’écosphère. Elle associe étroitement la mise en valeur des ressources et la conservation des diversités biologiques et culturelles qui constituent l’identité alpine. Cet article a pour ambition de montrer : (1 comment s’organise la coordination internationale des recherches sur les

  14. Fungal associations of roots of dominant and sub-dominant plants in high-alpine vegetation systems with special reference to mycorrhiza.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haselwandter, K; Read, D J

    1980-04-01

    Types of root infection were analysed in healthy dominant and sub-dominant plants of zonal and azonal vegetation above the timberline in the Central and Northern Calcareous Alps of Austria. In the open nival zone vegetation, infection by fungi of the Rhizoctonia type was predominant, vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal infection, which was mostly of the fine endophyte (Glomus tenuis) type, being light and mainly restricted to grasses in closed vegetation patches. More extensive Glomus tenuis infection was found in the alpine grass heath, but in Carex, Rhizoctonia was again the most important fungus. The ericaceous plants of the dwarf shrub heath have typical ericoid infection, but quantitative analysis reveals a decrease of infection intensity with increase of altitude. The possible function of the various types of root infection are discussed, and the status of Rhizoctonia as a possible mycorrhizal fungus is considered.

  15. MAPPING ALPINE VEGETATION LOCATION PROPERTIES BY DENSE MATCHING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Niederheiser

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Highly accurate 3D micro topographic mapping in mountain research demands for light equipment and low cost solutions. Recent developments in structure from motion and dense matching techniques provide promising tools for such applications. In the following, the feasibility of terrestrial photogrammetry for mapping topographic location properties of sparsely vegetated areas in selected European mountain regions is investigated. Changes in species composition at alpine vegetation locations are indicators of climate change consequences, such as the pronounced rise of average temperatures in mountains compared to the global average. Better understanding of climate change effects on plants demand for investigations on a micro-topographic scale. We use professional and consumer grade digital single-lens reflex cameras mapping 288 plots each 3 x 3 m on 18 summits in the Alps and Mediterranean Mountains within the GLORIA (GLobal Observation Research Initiative in Alpine environments network. Image matching tests result in accuracies that are in the order of millimetres in the XY-plane and below 0.5 mm in Z-direction at the second image pyramid level. Reconstructing vegetation proves to be a challenge due to its fine and small structured architecture and its permanent movement by wind during image acquisition, which is omnipresent on mountain summits. The produced 3D point clouds are gridded to 6 mm resolution from which topographic parameters such as slope, aspect and roughness are derived. At a later project stage these parameters will be statistically linked to botanical reference data in order to conclude on relations between specific location properties and species compositions.

  16. Tomography images of the Alpine roots and surrounding upper mantle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plomerova, Jaroslava; Babuska, Vladislav

    2017-04-01

    Teleseismic body-wave tomography represents powerful tool to study regional velocity structure of the upper mantle and to image velocity anomalies, such as subducted lithosphere plates in collisional zones. In this contribution, we recapitulate 3D models of the upper mantle beneath the Alps, which developed at a collision zone of the Eurasian and African plates. Seismic tomography studies indicate a leading role of the rigid mantle lithosphere that functioned as a major stress guide during the plate collisions. Interactions of the European lithosphere with several micro-plates in the south resulted in an arcuate shape of this mountain range on the surface and in a complicated geometry of the Alpine subductions in the mantle. Early models with one bended lithosphere root have been replaced with more advanced models showing two separate lithosphere roots beneath the Western and Eastern Alps (Babuska et al., Tectonophysics 1990; Lippitsch et al., JGR 2003). The standard isotropic velocity tomography, based on pre-AlpArray data (the currently performed passive seismic experiment in the Alps and surroundings) images the south-eastward dipping curved slab of the Eurasian lithosphere in the Western Alps. On the contrary, beneath the Eastern Alps the results indicate a very steep northward dipping root that resulted from the collision of the European plate with the Adriatic microplate. Dando et al. (2011) interpret high-velocity heterogeneities at the bottom of their regional tomographic model as a graveyard of old subducted lithospheres. High density of stations, large amount of rays and dense ray-coverage of the volume studied are not the only essential pre-requisites for reliable tomography results. A compromise between the amount of pre-processed data and the high-quality of the tomography input (travel-time residuals) is of the high importance as well. For the first time, the existence of two separate roots beneath the Alps has been revealed from carefully pre

  17. [A large-scale accident in Alpine terrain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wildner, M; Paal, P

    2015-02-01

    Due to the geographical conditions, large-scale accidents amounting to mass casualty incidents (MCI) in Alpine terrain regularly present rescue teams with huge challenges. Using an example incident, specific conditions and typical problems associated with such a situation are presented. The first rescue team members to arrive have the elementary tasks of qualified triage and communication to the control room, which is required to dispatch the necessary additional support. Only with a clear "concept", to which all have to adhere, can the subsequent chaos phase be limited. In this respect, a time factor confounded by adverse weather conditions or darkness represents enormous pressure. Additional hazards are frostbite and hypothermia. If priorities can be established in terms of urgency, then treatment and procedure algorithms have proven successful. For evacuation of causalities, a helicopter should be strived for. Due to the low density of hospitals in Alpine regions, it is often necessary to distribute the patients over a wide area. Rescue operations in Alpine terrain have to be performed according to the particular conditions and require rescue teams to have specific knowledge and expertise. The possibility of a large-scale accident should be considered when planning events. With respect to optimization of rescue measures, regular training and exercises are rational, as is the analysis of previous large-scale Alpine accidents.

  18. The long-term trends (1982-2006) in vegetation greenness of the alpine ecosystem in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Li; Guo, Huadong; Wang, Cuizhen; Ji, Lei; Li, Jing; Wang, Kun; Dai, Lin

    2014-01-01

    The increased rate of annual temperature in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau exceeded all other areas of the same latitude in recent decades. The influence of the warming climate on the alpine ecosystem of the plateau was distinct. An analysis of alpine vegetation under changes in climatic conditions was conducted in this study. This was done through an examination of vegetation greenness and its relationship with climate variability using the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer satellite imagery and climate datasets. Vegetation in the plateau experienced a positive trend in greenness, with 18.0 % of the vegetated areas exhibiting significantly positive trends, which were primarily located in the eastern and southwestern parts of the plateau. In grasslands, 25.8 % of meadows and 14.1 % of steppes exhibited significant upward trends. In contrast, the broadleaf forests experienced a trend of degradation. Temperature, particularly summer temperature, was the primary factor promoting the vegetation growth in the plateau. The wetter and warmer climate in the east contributed to the favorable conditions for vegetation. The alpine meadow was mostly sensitive to temperature, while the steppes were sensitive to both temperature and precipitation. Although a warming climate was expected to be beneficial to vegetation growth in the alpine region, the rising temperature coupled with reduced precipitation in the south did not favor vegetation growth due to low humidity and poor soil moisture conditions.

  19. CanWEA regional issues and wind energy project siting : mountainous areas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D' Entremont, M. [Jacques Whitford Ltd., Vancouver, BC (Canada)]|[Axys Environmental Consulting Ltd., Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    2008-07-01

    Planning and permitting considerations for wind energy project siting in mountainous areas were discussed. Mountainous regions have a specific set of environmental and socio-economic concerns. Potential disruptions to wildlife, noise, and visual impacts are a primary concern in the assessment of potential wind farm projects. Alpine habitats are unique and often contain fragile and endangered species. Reclamation techniques for mountainous habitats have not been extensively tested, and the sites are not as resilient as sites located in other ecosystems. In addition, alpine habitats are often migratory corridors and breeding grounds for threatened or endangered birds. In the winter months, alpine habitats are used by caribou, grizzly bears, and wolverine dens. Bats are also present at high elevations. It is often difficult to conduct baseline and monitoring studies in mountainous areas since alpine habitat is subject to rapid weather changes, and has a very short construction period. tabs., figs.

  20. 高寒地区日光温室延后栽培红地球葡萄的光合特性%Photosynthetic characteristics of “Red Globe”grape under delayed cultivation in greenhouse in alpine region

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨江山; 常永义

    2013-01-01

      以高原高寒地区日光温室延后栽培红地球葡萄为试材,研究了其在果实膨大期、转色期和成熟期光合特性和叶绿素含量的变化。结果表明:不同物候期红地球葡萄净光合速率(Pn)日变化均呈双峰曲线变化趋势,有光合午休现象;从果实膨大期、转色期到成熟期,Pn日变化的峰值和均值逐渐降低;膨大期和成熟期 Pn午休主要是非气孔限制所致,转色期 Pn午休主要是气孔限制引起;日光温室延后葡萄栽培可以极大地提高葡萄 WUE ,冬季低温季节表现更明显;Chla、Chlb和Chl(a+b)含量均为膨大期>转色期>成熟期,成熟期Chlb表现显著下降;Pn同Chlb呈显著正相关关系。%In fruit enlargement ,colouring and maturity period ,the changes of photosynthetic characteristics and chlorophyll contents in“Red Globe”grape were studied under delayed cultivation in greenhouse in alpine region .The re-sults showed that the diurnal variation of Pn appeared as double-peak curve and there was a “noon break” phenomenon in all phenophases .The peak and average value of diurnal Pn reduced gradually from fruit enlargement ,colouring to ma-turity period .The“noon break”phenomenon in fruit enlargement and maturity period was mainly caused by non-stomatal limitation ,but that in colouring period was mainly caused by stomatal limitation .Delayed cultivation in greenhouse could remarkably increase WUE of grape ,which was more effective when the temperature was low in winter .The contents of Chla ,Chlb and Chl(a+b) were wholly ordered as :enlargement period> colouring period>maturity period ,and the content of Chlb reduced significantly in maturity period .There was a significant positive relationship between Pn and Chl b content .

  1. Climate-induced glacier and snow loss imperils alpine stream insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giersch, J. Joseph; Hotaling, Scott; Kovach, Ryan; Jones, Leslie A.; Muhlfeld, Clint C.

    2017-01-01

    Climate warming is causing rapid loss of glaciers and snowpack in mountainous regions worldwide. These changes are predicted to negatively impact the habitats of many range-restricted species, particularly endemic, mountaintop species dependent on the unique thermal and hydrologic conditions found only in glacier-fed and snowmelt-driven alpine streams. Though progress has been made, existing understanding of the status, distribution, and ecology of alpine aquatic species, particularly in North America, is lacking, thereby hindering conservation and management programs. Two aquatic insects – the meltwater stonefly Lednia tumana and the glacier stonefly Zapada glacier – were recently proposed for listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act due to climate-change-induced habitat loss. Using a large dataset (272 streams, 482 total sites) with high-resolution climate and habitat information, we describe the distribution, status, and key environmental features that limit L. tumana and Z. glacier across the northern Rocky Mountains. Lednia tumana was detected in 113 streams (175 sites) within Glacier National Park (GNP) and surrounding areas. The probability of L. tumana occurrence increased with cold stream temperatures and close proximity to glaciers and permanent snowfields. Similarly, densities of L. tumana declined with increasing distance from stream source. Zapada glacier was only detected in 10 streams (20 sites), six in GNP and four in mountain ranges up to ~600 km southwest. Our results show that both L. tumana and Z. glacier inhabit an extremely narrow distribution, restricted to short sections of cold, alpine streams often below glaciers predicted to disappear over the next two decades. Climate warming-induced glacier and snow loss clearly imperils the persistence of L. tumana and Z. glacier throughout their ranges, highlighting the role of mountaintop aquatic invertebrates as sentinels of climate change in mid-latitude regions.

  2. Observed long-term greening of alpine vegetation—a case study in the French Alps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Bradley Z.; Corona, Monica C.; Dentant, Cédric; Bonet, Richard; Thuiller, Wilfried; Choler, Philippe

    2017-11-01

    We combined imagery from multiple sources (MODIS, Landsat-5, 7, 8) with land cover data to test for long-term (1984-2015) greening or browning trends of vegetation in a temperate alpine area, the Ecrins National Park, in the context of recent climate change and domestic grazing practices. We showed that over half (56%) of the Ecrins National Park displayed significant increases in peak normalized difference vegetation index (NDVImax) over the last 16 years (2000-2015). Importantly, the highest proportional increases in NDVImax occurred in rocky habitats at high elevations (> 2500 m a.s.l.). While spatial agreement in the direction of change in NDVImax as detected by MODIS and Landsat was high (76% overlap), correlations between log-response ratio values were of moderate strength (approx. 0.3). In the context of above treeline habitats, we found that proportional increases in NDVImax were higher between 1984 and 2000 than between 2000 and 2015, suggesting a slowing of greening dynamics during the recent decade. The timing of accelerated greening prior to 2000 coincided with a pronounced increase in the amount of snow-free growing degree-days that occurred during the 1980s and 1990s. In the case of grasslands and low-shrub habitats, we did not find evidence for a negative effect of grazing on greening trends, possibly due to the low grazing intensity typically found in the study area. We propose that the emergence of a longer and warmer growing season enabled high-elevation plant communities to produce more biomass, and also allowed for plant colonization of habitats previously characterized by long-lasting snow cover. Increasing plant productivity in an alpine context has potential implications for biodiversity trajectories and for ecosystem services in mountain landscapes. The presented evidence for long-term greening trends in a representative region of the European Alps provides the basis for further research on mechanisms of greening in alpine landscapes.

  3. Drones application on snow and ice surveys in alpine areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    La Rocca, Leonardo; Bonetti, Luigi; Fioletti, Matteo; Peretti, Giovanni

    2015-04-01

    First results from Climate change are now clear in Europe, and in Italy in particular, with the natural disasters that damaged irreparably the territory and the habitat due to extreme meteorological events. The Directive 2007/60/EC highlight that an "effective natural hazards prevention and mitigation that requires coordination between Member States above all on natural hazards prevention" is necessary. A climate change adaptation strategy is identified on the basis of the guidelines of the European Community program 2007-2013. Following the directives provided in the financial instrument for civil protection "Union Civil Protection Mechanism" under Decision No. 1313/2013 / EU of the European Parliament and Council, a cross-cutting approach that takes into account a large number of implementation tools of EU policies is proposed as climate change adaptation strategy. In last 7 years a network of trans-Alpine area's authorities was created between Italy and Switzerland to define an adaptive strategy on climate change effects on natural enviroment based on non structural remedies. The Interreg IT - CH STRADA Project (STRategie di ADAttamento al cambiamento climatico) was born to join all the non structural remedies to climate change effects caused by snow and avalanches, on mountain sources, extreme hydrological events and to manage all transnational hydrological resources, involving all stakeholders from Italy and Switzerland. The STRADA project involved all civil protection authorities and all research centers in charge of snow, hydrology end civil protection. The Snow - meteorological center of the Regional Agency for Environment Protection (CNM of ARPA Lombardia) and the Civil Protection of Lombardy Region created a research team to develop tools for avalanche prediction and to observe and predict snow cover on Alpine area. With this aim a lot of aerial photo using Drone as been performed in unusual landscape. Results of all surveys were really interesting on a

  4. Evolutionary diversification of cryophilic Grylloblatta species (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae in alpine habitats of California

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roderick George K

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Climate in alpine habitats has undergone extreme variation during Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs, resulting in repeated expansion and contraction of alpine glaciers. Many cold-adapted alpine species have responded to these climatic changes with long-distance range shifts. These species typically exhibit shallow genetic differentiation over a large geographical area. In contrast, poorly dispersing organisms often form species complexes within mountain ranges, such as the California endemic ice-crawlers (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae: Grylloblatta. The diversification pattern of poorly dispersing species might provide more information on the localized effects of historical climate change, the importance of particular climatic events, as well as the history of dispersal. Here we use multi-locus genetic data to examine the phylogenetic relationships and geographic pattern of diversification in California Grylloblatta. Results Our analysis reveals a pattern of deep genetic subdivision among geographically isolated populations of Grylloblatta in California. Alpine populations diverged from low elevation populations and subsequently diversified. Using a Bayesian relaxed clock model and both uncalibrated and calibrated measurements of time to most recent common ancestor, we reconstruct the temporal diversification of alpine Grylloblatta populations. Based on calibrated relaxed clock estimates, evolutionary diversification of Grylloblatta occurred during the Pliocene-Pleistocene epochs, with an initial dispersal into California during the Pliocene and species diversification in alpine clades during the middle Pleistocene epoch. Conclusions Grylloblatta species exhibit a high degree of genetic subdivision in California with well defined geographic structure. Distinct glacial refugia can be inferred within the Sierra Nevada, corresponding to major, glaciated drainage basins. Low elevation populations are sister to alpine populations

  5. Organic Farming and Social-Ecological Resilience: the Alpine Valleys of Sölktäler, Austria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecka Milestad

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available Farming in the Austrian Alps is small in scale and involves a high degree of manual labor. In the face of structural changes in agriculture, alpine farms are finding it increasingly difficult to remain economically viable. Organic farming presents a promising alternative for alpine farmers because it receives considerable financial support under the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union. Recent years have seen an increase in the number of organic farms in Austria in general, and in alpine areas in particular. Using data from an empirical study carried out in the alpine area of Sölktäler, Austria, this paper examines the issues of how closely the regulations and principles of organic farming match farmers' perspectives on sustainable agriculture and whether or not organic farming is capable of building social-ecological resilience for local farms. Qualitative interviews and a series of workshops were used to learn about farmers' "desired system state" with regard to their region, disturbances to this system, and their perspectives on organic farming. The desired system in Sölktäler as formulated by the farmers depicts a vivid farming community that manages a diverse traditional agricultural landscape and performs a number of ecological services. The desired system and the principles of organic farming have several aspects in common, and many management practices and features of the social system support social-ecological resilience. The vulnerability of farms increases, however, when farmers must deal with structural changes in agriculture, the erosion of traditional ecological knowledge, and societal transformation. In conclusion, organic farming is a tool that can be used to build social-ecological resilience for Sölktäler farms, because it secures economic funding for the area and makes it possible to sustain environmentally benign practices. What remains is the question of whether the farming community is capable of

  6. Snow effects on alpine vegetation in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kun; Zhang, Li; Qiu, Yubao; Ji, Lei; Tian, Feng; Wang, Cuizhen; Wang, Zhiyong

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the relationships between snow and vegetation is important for interpretation of the responses of alpine ecosystems to climate changes. The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau is regarded as an ideal area due to its undisturbed features with low population and relatively high snow cover. We used 500 m Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) datasets during 2001–2010 to examine the snow–vegetation relationships, specifically, (1) the influence of snow melting date on vegetation green-up date and (2) the effects of snow cover duration on vegetation greenness. The results showed that the alpine vegetation responded strongly to snow phenology (i.e., snow melting date and snow cover duration) over large areas of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Snow melting date and vegetation green-up date were significantly correlated (p growth was influenced by different seasonal snow cover durations (SCDs) in different regions. Generally, the December–February and March–May SCDs played a significantly role in vegetation growth, both positively and negatively, depending on different water source regions. Snow's positive impact on vegetation was larger than the negative impact.

  7. Deep genetic divergence between disjunct Refugia in the Arctic-Alpine King's Crown, Rhodiola integrifolia (Crassulaceae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric G DeChaine

    Full Text Available Despite the strength of climatic variability at high latitudes and upper elevations, we still do not fully understand how plants in North America that are distributed between Arctic and alpine areas responded to the environmental changes of the Quaternary. To address this question, we set out to resolve the evolutionary history of the King's Crown, Rhodiola integrifolia using multi-locus population genetic and phylogenetic analyses in combination with ecological niche modeling. Our population genetic analyses of multiple anonymous nuclear loci revealed two major clades within R. integrifolia that diverged from each other ~ 700 kya: one occurring in Beringia to the north (including members of subspecies leedyi and part of subspecies integrifolia, and the other restricted to the Southern Rocky Mountain refugium in the south (including individuals of subspecies neomexicana and part of subspecies integrifolia. Ecological niche models corroborate our hypothesized locations of refugial areas inferred from our phylogeographic analyses and revealed some environmental differences between the regions inhabited by its two subclades. Our study underscores the role of geographic isolation in promoting genetic divergence and the evolution of endemic subspecies in R. integrifolia. Furthermore, our phylogenetic analyses of the plastid spacer region trnL-F demonstrate that among the native North American species, R. integrifolia and R. rhodantha are more closely related to one another than either is to R. rosea. An understanding of these historic processes lies at the heart of making informed management decisions regarding this and other Arctic-alpine species of concern in this increasingly threatened biome.

  8. Evapotranspiration partitioning in the highest alpine meadow zones through in-situ chamber and dual stable water isotope approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, J.; Tian, L.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding plant functionality within the water cycles of grassland ecosystems is crucial for obtaining both regional water balance and plant adaptability in the context of ongoing climate change. The transpiration to evapotranspiration ratio (T/ET) is an indicator of plant's contribution to ecosystem water cycle. In this study, we used high-frequency laser spectroscopy (L2130-i), three custom-built chambers, and eddy covariance techniques, to constrain the role played by plants in evapotranspiration over an alpine meadow ecosystem in the central Tibetan Plateau (TP). Three different sizes of chambers are used to direct measure the isotopic compositions in evapotranspiration (δET), evaporation (δE) and transpiration (δT). The consistent T/ET between δ18O and δD manifests that chamber and dual isotope tracers are robust methods to estimate T/ET in alpine meadow zone. Sensitivity analysis shows that the isotopic composition of evapotranspiration is the main contributor to, and the uncertainty source for, the T/ET estimate. The influence of meteorological and biotic factors on T/ET is also discussed. The results from this study indicate that plants play an important role in the water cycles of alpine meadow ecosystems despite the sparse distribution of plant cover. We also synthesized the published T/ET data over the entire TP region, and found a good relation between T/ET and leaf area index (LAI). Moreover, soil water content played some role in controlling T/ET beyond the LAI in arid/semiarid regions such as the TP. More than half of the TP is covered by grassland, but its low biomass and shallow rooting depth make it very vulnerable to climate change variables such as air temperature warming and variations in precipitation. Given the crucial role played by plants in an ecosystem's water cycle, any variations in grassland cover are likely to exert a critical impact on the regional hydrological cycle, and even the regional climate.

  9. Asymptotically Honest Confidence Regions for High Dimensional

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Caner, Mehmet; Kock, Anders Bredahl

    While variable selection and oracle inequalities for the estimation and prediction error have received considerable attention in the literature on high-dimensional models, very little work has been done in the area of testing and construction of confidence bands in high-dimensional models. However...... develop an oracle inequality for the conservative Lasso only assuming the existence of a certain number of moments. This is done by means of the Marcinkiewicz-Zygmund inequality which in our context provides sharper bounds than Nemirovski's inequality. As opposed to van de Geer et al. (2014) we allow...

  10. Experimental effects of herbivore density on above-ground plant biomass in an alpine grassland ecosystem

    OpenAIRE

    Austrheim, Gunnar; Speed, James David Mervyn; Martinsen, Vegard; Mulder, Jan; Mysterud, Atle

    2014-01-01

    Herbivores may increase or decrease aboveground plant productivity depending on factors such as herbivore density and habitat productivity. The grazing optimization hypothesis predicts a peak in plant production at intermediate herbivore densities, but has rarely been tested experimentally in an alpine field setting. In an experimental design with three densities of sheep (high, low, and no sheep), we harvested aboveground plant biomass in alpine grasslands prior to treatment and after five y...

  11. Konvencija o varstvu Alp in protokoli - izhodišča za trajnostni razvoj v Slovenskih Alpah in sosedstvu = The Alpine convention and protocols - the starting points for sustainable development in the Slovenian Alps and its neighbouring regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vesna Kolar-Planinšič

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available Thearticle presents the international agreement Alpine Convention. The stateswhich have signed the agreement have undertaken to the common politics forthe preservation and sustainable use of sources. The areas covered by theconvention: population and culture, physical planning, prevention of airpolution, soil conservation, water management, nature conservation andlandscape planning, mountain farming, mountain forestry, tourism andrecreation, transport, energy and waste management are presented as well astheir aims. The primary stress is given to the protocols: "PhysicalPlanning and Sustainable Development" and "Nature Conservation andLandscape Planning",with the emphasis to the sustainable development. Theyrepresent cover and their aims are implemented in all the others protocols.

  12. Hydrologic response to valley-scale structure in alpine headwaters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weekes, Anne A.; Torgersen, Christian E.; Montgomery, David R.; Woodward, Andrea; Bolton, Susan M.

    2015-01-01

    Few systematic studies of valley-scale geomorphic drivers of streamflow regimes in complex alpine headwaters have compared response between catchments. As a result, little guidance is available for regional-scale hydrological research and monitoring efforts that include assessments of ecosystem function. Physical parameters such as slope, elevation range, drainage area and bedrock geology are often used to stratify differences in streamflow response between sampling sites within an ecoregion. However, these metrics do not take into account geomorphic controls on streamflow specific to glaciated mountain headwaters. The coarse-grained nature of depositional features in alpine catchments suggests that these landforms have little water storage capacity because hillslope runoff moves rapidly just beneath the rock mantle before emerging in fluvial networks. However, recent studies show that a range of depositional features, including talus slopes, protalus ramparts and 'rock-ice' features may have more storage capacity than previously thought.

  13. High tech in the Öresund region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Povl Adler; Serin, Göran Folke

    This book discusses the development conditions in the high tech sector for both high tech manufacturing and services. A central issue in the book is the differences in externalities which exist between various industries in the high tech sector. In this connection the confusion of externalities...... related to different parts of the high tech sector will be addressed. The location of the high tech sector in the Öresund region will be analysed and the region will also be related to other high tech regions in Europe....

  14. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - Alpine Space wind map - Modeling approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Remund, J. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents describes the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The series of reports describes the development and use of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. This report discusses two modelling approaches investigated for use in the definition of a wind map for the alpine area. The method chosen and its application are discussed. The various sources of information for input to the model are listed and discussed.

  15. Geochronologic constraints of the uplift and metamorphism along the Alpine Fault, South Island, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chamberlain, C.P.; Zeitler, P.K.; Cooper, A.F.

    1995-01-01

    Geochronological studies of pegmatites and Alpine Schist exposed east of the Alpine Fault, South Island, New Zealand, reveal a complex history beginning with magmatism and metamorphism at c. 68 m.y. ago and ending with rapid uplift and exhumation in the last 5 m.y. Pegmatites exposed in the Mataketake Range give conventional U-Pb monazite and SHRIMP ion-probe zircon ages of 68 ± 2.6 Ma and 67.9 ± 2.5 Ma, respectively. Inasmuch as petrologic and isotopic data indicate that the Alpine pegmatites are melts derived from the Alpine Schist, the age of the pegmatites suggests that, at least locally, the high-grade metamorphism is considerably younger than previously assumed. We tentatively suggest that metamorphism, in at least some areas of the Alpine Schist, may be associated with Late Cretaceous transtension rather than resulting from the consequences of collision during the Rangitata Orogeny. 40 Ar/ 39 Ar studies of hornblendes from the Alpine Schist, collected from the Haast River to the Franz Josef Glacier area, reveal highly disturbed spectra. Despite this complexity, these analyses define a systematic decrease in ages both across-strike toward the Alpine Fault (Haast River traverse) and northwards along-strike towards Mt Cook. This pattern of decreasing 40 Ar/ 39 Ar hornblende ages is also observed in lower closure temperature systems such as zircon and apatite fission-track ages. We interpret the decrease in ages toward the fault to be the result of deeper exhumation in the immediate vicinity of the Alpine Fault, whereas we interpret the northward younging of fault-proximal samples to be a result of both more recent and possibly more extensive exhumation than occurred in areas to the south. (author). 55 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs

  16. Microbial diversity in European alpine permafrost and active layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Beat; Rime, Thomas; Phillips, Marcia; Stierli, Beat; Hajdas, Irka; Widmer, Franco; Hartmann, Martin

    2016-03-01

    Permafrost represents a largely understudied genetic resource. Thawing of permafrost with global warming will not only promote microbial carbon turnover with direct feedback on greenhouse gases, but also unlock an unknown microbial diversity. Pioneering metagenomic efforts have shed light on the permafrost microbiome in polar regions, but temperate mountain permafrost is largely understudied. We applied a unique experimental design coupled to high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal markers to characterize the microbiota at the long-term alpine permafrost study site 'Muot-da-Barba-Peider' in eastern Switzerland with an approximate radiocarbon age of 12 000 years. Compared to the active layers, the permafrost community was more diverse and enriched with members of the superphylum Patescibacteria (OD1, TM7, GN02 and OP11). These understudied phyla with no cultured representatives proposedly feature small streamlined genomes with reduced metabolic capabilities, adaptations to anaerobic fermentative metabolisms and potential ectosymbiotic lifestyles. The permafrost microbiota was also enriched with yeasts and lichenized fungi known to harbour various structural and functional adaptation mechanisms to survive under extreme sub-zero conditions. These data yield an unprecedented view on microbial life in temperate mountain permafrost, which is increasingly important for understanding the biological dynamics of permafrost in order to anticipate potential ecological trajectories in a warming world. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Automatic Identification of Alpine Mass Movements by a Combination of Seismic and Infrasound Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hübl, Johannes; McArdell, Brian W.; Walter, Fabian

    2018-01-01

    The automatic detection and identification of alpine mass movements such as debris flows, debris floods, or landslides have been of increasing importance for devising mitigation measures in densely populated and intensively used alpine regions. Since these mass movements emit characteristic seismic and acoustic waves in the low-frequency range (<30 Hz), several approaches have already been developed for detection and warning systems based on these signals. However, a combination of the two methods, for improving detection probability and reducing false alarms, is still applied rarely. This paper presents an update and extension of a previously published approach for a detection and identification system based on a combination of seismic and infrasound sensors. Furthermore, this work evaluates the possible early warning times at several test sites and aims to analyze the seismic and infrasound spectral signature produced by different sediment-related mass movements to identify the process type and estimate the magnitude of the event. Thus, this study presents an initial method for estimating the peak discharge and total volume of debris flows based on infrasound data. Tests on several catchments show that this system can detect and identify mass movements in real time directly at the sensor site with high accuracy and a low false alarm ratio. PMID:29789449

  18. Automatic Identification of Alpine Mass Movements by a Combination of Seismic and Infrasound Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Schimmel

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The automatic detection and identification of alpine mass movements such as debris flows, debris floods, or landslides have been of increasing importance for devising mitigation measures in densely populated and intensively used alpine regions. Since these mass movements emit characteristic seismic and acoustic waves in the low-frequency range (<30 Hz, several approaches have already been developed for detection and warning systems based on these signals. However, a combination of the two methods, for improving detection probability and reducing false alarms, is still applied rarely. This paper presents an update and extension of a previously published approach for a detection and identification system based on a combination of seismic and infrasound sensors. Furthermore, this work evaluates the possible early warning times at several test sites and aims to analyze the seismic and infrasound spectral signature produced by different sediment-related mass movements to identify the process type and estimate the magnitude of the event. Thus, this study presents an initial method for estimating the peak discharge and total volume of debris flows based on infrasound data. Tests on several catchments show that this system can detect and identify mass movements in real time directly at the sensor site with high accuracy and a low false alarm ratio.

  19. Coupled cryoconite ecosystem structure-function relationships are revealed by comparing bacterial communities in alpine and Arctic glaciers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edwards, Arwyn; Mur, Luis A. J.; Girdwood, Susan E.

    2014-01-01

    Cryoconite holes are known as foci of microbial diversity and activity on polar glacier surfaces, but are virtually unexplored microbial habitats in alpine regions. In addition, whether cryoconite community structure reflects ecosystem functionality is poorly understood. Terminal restriction...... revealed Proteobacteria were particularly abundant, with Cyanobacteria likely acting as ecosystem engineers in both alpine and Arctic cryoconite communities. However, despite these generalities, significant differences in bacterial community structures, compositions and metabolomes are found between alpine...... fragment length polymorphism and Fourier transform infrared metabolite fingerprinting of cryoconite from glaciers in Austria, Greenland and Svalbard demonstrated cryoconite bacterial communities are closely correlated with cognate metabolite fingerprints. The influence of bacterial-associated fatty acids...

  20. Semaine alpine 2008 : innover (dans) les Alpes

    OpenAIRE

    Bourdeau, Philippe; Bourdeau, Philippe; Corneloup, Jean; Corneloup, Jean; Finger-Stich, Andréa; Finger-Stich, Andréa; Giraut, Frédéric; Giraut, Frédéric; Kohler, Yann; Kohler, Yann; Macchiavelli, Andrea; Macchiavelli, Andrea; Scheurer, Thomas; Scheurer, Thomas; Ullrich, Aurelia

    2009-01-01

    Ce premier dossier en ligne se penche sur une question de grande actualité : l’innovation, pour interroger les conceptions et mises en œuvre de démarches innovantes dans les contextes montagnards. Ces textes sont issus de la « Semaine alpine », qui s’est déroulée en juin 2008 à l’Argentière-La Bessée, dans les Hautes-Alpes (France). Ces « Semaines alpines », en alternance avec les « Forums alpins », rassemblent tous les deux ans des chercheurs et des acteurs locaux de l’ensemble de l’arc alp...

  1. The 'Alpine Windharvest' project - Overview; Projekt Alpine Windharvest - Schlussbericht

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Kunz, S. [Suisse Eole, Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This short introduction forms part of a final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) that presents the results of a project carried out by the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole' and the meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis and formed part of a European wind-energy project that investigated the technical, legal and socio-economical aspects of the use of wind energy. The work-package 7 included the identification of wind-energy areas using comparative Geographic Information System (GIS) methods. An overview is provided of the wind-energy potential in the whole of the alpine region and five areas in which measurements are to be made, including GIS analyses, are defined.

  2. Climate change and mountain Grouse: recent evidences from alpine habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brugnoli A

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Current climate change, referring as well to the observed rain and temperature patterns as to the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather conditions, has a deep influence on biotic communities and, in particular, on mountain Grouse. These species show great adaptation to coldness, are highly sedentary and have quite “strict” ecological requirements, when it deals with habitat selection. Moreover, their alpine ranges are dangerously marginal to the main distribution areas, which increases the risk of dramatic changes in occurrence, demography and ecology. However, not all the species will predictably be exposed in the same way to the menace of climate change over the next 50-100 years. This article gives a brief review of the main data acquired in the alpine environment in this matter. It also underlines the utmost need to proceed with research and monitoring activities, in order to effectively adapt and manage conservation strategies on mid-long terms.

  3. An Investigation of the Impacts of Climate and Environmental Change on Alpine Lakes in the Uinta Mountains, Utah

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moser, K. A.; Hundey, E. J.; Porinchu, D. F.

    2007-12-01

    Aquatic systems in alpine and sub-alpine areas of the western United States are potentially impacted by atmospheric pollution and climate change. Because these mountainous regions are an important water resource for the western United States, it is critical to monitor and protect these systems. The Uinta Mountains are an east- west trending mountain range located on the border between Utah, Wyoming and Colorado and downwind of the Wasatch Front, Utah, which is characterized by a rapidly expanding population, as well as mining and industry. This alpine area provides water to many areas in Utah, and contributes approximately nine percent of the water supply to the Upper Colorado River. Our research is focused on determining the impacts of climate change and pollution on alpine lakes in the Uinta Mountains. The results presented here are based on limnological measurements made at 64 Uinta Mountain lakes spanning a longitude gradient of one degree and an elevation gradient of 3000 feet. At each lake maximum depth, conductivity, salinity, pH, Secchi depth, temperature, alkalinity, and concentrations of major anions, cations and trace metals were measured. Principal Components Analysis (PCA) was performed to determine relationships between these variables and to examine the variability of the values of these variables. Our results indicate that steep climate gradients related to elevation and longitude result in clear differences in limnological properties of the study sites, with high elevation lakes characterized by greater amounts of nitrate and nitrite compared to low elevation sites. As well, diatoms in these lakes indicate that many high elevation sites are mesotrophic to eutrophic, which is unexpected for such remote aquatic ecosystems. We hypothesize that elevated nitrate and nitrite levels at high elevation sites are related to atmospherically derived nitrogen, but are being exacerbated relative to lower elevation sites by greater snow cover and reduced plant

  4. Improving Magnet Designs With High and Low Field Regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjørk, Rasmus; Bahl, Christian Robert Haffenden; Smith, Anders

    2011-01-01

    A general scheme for increasing the difference in magnetic flux density between a high and a low magnetic field region by removing unnecessary magnet material is presented. This is important in, e.g., magnetic refrigeration where magnet arrays have to deliver high field regions in close proximity...... to low field regions. Also, a general way to replace magnet material with a high permeability soft magnetic material where appropriate is discussed. As an example, these schemes are applied to a two dimensional concentric Halbach cylinder design resulting in a reduction of the amount of magnet material...

  5. Identifying key conservation threats to Alpine birds through expert knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedrini, Paolo; Brambilla, Mattia; Rolando, Antonio; Girardello, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Alpine biodiversity is subject to a range of increasing threats, but the scarcity of data for many taxa means that it is difficult to assess the level and likely future impact of a given threat. Expert opinion can be a useful tool to address knowledge gaps in the absence of adequate data. Experts with experience in Alpine ecology were approached to rank threat levels for 69 Alpine bird species over the next 50 years for the whole European Alps in relation to ten categories: land abandonment, climate change, renewable energy, fire, forestry practices, grazing practices, hunting, leisure, mining and urbanization. There was a high degree of concordance in ranking of perceived threats among experts for most threat categories. The major overall perceived threats to Alpine birds identified through expert knowledge were land abandonment, urbanization, leisure and forestry, although other perceived threats were ranked highly for particular species groups (renewable energy and hunting for raptors, hunting for gamebirds). For groups of species defined according to their breeding habitat, open habitat species and treeline species were perceived as the most threatened. A spatial risk assessment tool based on summed scores for the whole community showed threat levels were highest for bird communities of the northern and western Alps. Development of the approaches given in this paper, including addressing biases in the selection of experts and adopting a more detailed ranking procedure, could prove useful in the future in identifying future threats, and in carrying out risk assessments based on levels of threat to the whole bird community. PMID:26966659

  6. Identifying key conservation threats to Alpine birds through expert knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan E. Chamberlain

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Alpine biodiversity is subject to a range of increasing threats, but the scarcity of data for many taxa means that it is difficult to assess the level and likely future impact of a given threat. Expert opinion can be a useful tool to address knowledge gaps in the absence of adequate data. Experts with experience in Alpine ecology were approached to rank threat levels for 69 Alpine bird species over the next 50 years for the whole European Alps in relation to ten categories: land abandonment, climate change, renewable energy, fire, forestry practices, grazing practices, hunting, leisure, mining and urbanization. There was a high degree of concordance in ranking of perceived threats among experts for most threat categories. The major overall perceived threats to Alpine birds identified through expert knowledge were land abandonment, urbanization, leisure and forestry, although other perceived threats were ranked highly for particular species groups (renewable energy and hunting for raptors, hunting for gamebirds. For groups of species defined according to their breeding habitat, open habitat species and treeline species were perceived as the most threatened. A spatial risk assessment tool based on summed scores for the whole community showed threat levels were highest for bird communities of the northern and western Alps. Development of the approaches given in this paper, including addressing biases in the selection of experts and adopting a more detailed ranking procedure, could prove useful in the future in identifying future threats, and in carrying out risk assessments based on levels of threat to the whole bird community.

  7. Tourism and Water: Themes of the Alpine Convention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imhof, R.

    2012-04-01

    1) The contribution reflects the personal opinion of the author and does not necessarily reflect the point of view of the Permanent Secretariat. The Alpine Convention is a multilateral framework treaty signed in 1991 by the eight states of the Alpine bow as well as the European Community. Its main objectives are the sustainable development of the Alpine territory and the safeguarding of the interests of the people living within it, embracing the environmental, social and economic dimensions in the broadest sense. In order to achieve its objectives, over the years the Framework Convention has been equipped with a large number of thematic protocols, e.g. on tourism. The overall objective of the Protocol on Tourism, which first came into force in 2002, is to contribute to sustainable development in the Alpine region within the existing institutional framework, by encouraging environmentally-friendly tourism through specific measures and recommendations which take the interests of both the local population and tourists into account. The provisions of the Protocol on Tourism primarily concern tourism management and controlling tourist flows, structural developments such as ski lifts and ski slopes, accommodation and the balanced development of economically weak areas. Guidelines, development plans, sectoral plans have to be adopted at the appropriate territorial level in order to enable to assess the impact of tourism development on, inter alia, water. This extends also to ski slopes developments. For example the production of artificial snow production may be authorized only if the location's hydrological, climatic and ecological conditions allow. Water is listed among the twelve themes in relation to which the Contracting Parties are supposed to take measures and coordinate their policies (Article 2 of the Framework Convention). The Alpine Convention aims to preserve and re-establish healthy water systems, especially keeping waters clean and protecting the natural

  8. Seismic anisotropy in the vicinity of the Alpine fault, New Zealand, estimated by seismic interferometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takagi, R.; Okada, T.; Yoshida, K.; Townend, J.; Boese, C. M.; Baratin, L. M.; Chamberlain, C. J.; Savage, M. K.

    2016-12-01

    We estimate shear wave velocity anisotropy in shallow crust near the Alpine fault using seismic interferometry of borehole vertical arrays. We utilized four borehole observations: two sensors are deployed in two boreholes of the Deep Fault Drilling Project in the hanging wall side, and the other two sites are located in the footwall side. Surface sensors deployed just above each borehole are used to make vertical arrays. Crosscorrelating rotated horizontal seismograms observed by the borehole and surface sensors, we extracted polarized shear waves propagating from the bottom to the surface of each borehole. The extracted shear waves show polarization angle dependence of travel time, indicating shear wave anisotropy between the two sensors. In the hanging wall side, the estimated fast shear wave directions are parallel to the Alpine fault. Strong anisotropy of 20% is observed at the site within 100 m from the Alpine fault. The hanging wall consists of mylonite and schist characterized by fault parallel foliation. In addition, an acoustic borehole imaging reveals fractures parallel to the Alpine fault. The fault parallel anisotropy suggest structural anisotropy is predominant in the hanging wall, demonstrating consistency of geological and seismological observations. In the footwall side, on the other hand, the angle between the fast direction and the strike of the Alpine fault is 33-40 degrees. Since the footwall is composed of granitoid that may not have planar structure, stress induced anisotropy is possibly predominant. The direction of maximum horizontal stress (SHmax) estimated by focal mechanisms of regional earthquakes is 55 degrees of the Alpine fault. Possible interpretation of the difference between the fast direction and SHmax direction is depth rotation of stress field near the Alpine fault. Similar depth rotation of stress field is also observed in the SAFOD borehole at the San Andreas fault.

  9. The Jungfraujoch high-alpine research station (3454 m) as a background clean continental site for the measurement of aerosol parameters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nyeki, S.; Baltensperger, U.; Jost, D.T.; Weingartner, E.; Colbeck, I.

    1997-01-01

    Aerosol physical parameter measurements are reported here for the first full annual set of data from the Jungfraujoch site. Comparison to NOAA background and regional stations indicate that the site may be designated as 'clean continental' during the free tropospheric influenced period 03:00 -09:00. (author) figs., tab., refs

  10. The Jungfraujoch high-alpine research station (3454 m) as a background clean continental site for the measurement of aerosol parameters

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nyeki, S.; Baltensperger, U.; Jost, D.T.; Weingartner, E. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland); Colbeck, I. [Essex Univ., Colchester (United Kingdom)

    1997-09-01

    Aerosol physical parameter measurements are reported here for the first full annual set of data from the Jungfraujoch site. Comparison to NOAA background and regional stations indicate that the site may be designated as `clean continental` during the free tropospheric influenced period 03:00 -09:00. (author) figs., tab., refs.

  11. Mountain Rivers and Climate Change: Analysis of hazardous events in torrents of small alpine watersheds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lutzmann, Silke; Sass, Oliver

    2016-04-01

    Torrential processes like flooding, heavy bedload transport or debris flows in steep mountain channels emerge during intense, highly localized rainfall events. They pose a serious risk on the densely populated Alpine region. Hydrogeomorphic hazards are profoundly nonlinear, threshold mediated phenomena frequently causing costly damage to infrastructure and people. Thus, in the context of climate change, there is an ever rising interest in whether sediment cascades of small alpine catchments react to changing precipitation patterns and how the climate signal is propagated through the fluvial system. We intend to answer the following research questions: (i) What are critical meteorological characteristics triggering torrential events in the Eastern Alps of Austria? (ii) The effect of external triggers is strongly mediated by the internal disposition of catchments to respond. Which factors control the internal susceptibility? (iii) Do torrential processes show an increase in magnitude and frequency or a shift in seasonality in the recent past? (iv) Which future changes can be expected under different climate scenarios? Quantifications of bedload transport in small alpine catchments are rare and often associated with high uncertainties. Detailed knowledge though exists for the Schöttlbach catchment, a 71 km2 study area in Styria in the Eastern Alps. The torrent is monitored since a heavy precipitation event resulted in a disastrous flood in July 2011. Sediment mobilisation from slopes as well as within-channel storage and fluxes are regularly measured by photogrammetric methods and sediment impact sensors (SIS). The associated hydro-meteorological conditions are known from a dense station network. Changing states of connectivity can thus be related to precipitation and internal dynamics (sediment availability, cut-and-fill cycles). The site-specific insights are then conceptualized for application to a broader scale. Therefore, a Styria wide database of torrential

  12. The Rofental: a high Alpine research basin (1890–3770 m a.s.l. in the Ötztal Alps (Austria with over 150 years of hydrometeorological and glaciological observations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    U. Strasser

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available A comprehensive hydrometeorological and glaciological data set is presented, originating from a multitude of glaciological, meteorological, hydrological and laser scanning recordings at research sites in the Rofental (1891–3772 m a.s.l., Ötztal Alps, Austria. The data sets span a period of 150 years and hence represent a unique time series of rich high-altitude mountain observations. Their collection was originally initiated to support scientific investigation of the glaciers Hintereisferner, Kesselwandferner and Vernagtferner. Annual mass balance, glacier front variation, flow velocities and photographic records of the status of these glaciers were recorded. Later, additional measurements of meteorological and hydrological variables were undertaken, and over time a number of autonomous weather stations and runoff gauges were brought into operation; the available data now comprise records of temperature, relative humidity, short- and longwave radiation, wind speed and direction, air pressure, precipitation, and river water levels. Since 2001, a series of distributed (airborne and terrestrial laser scans is available, along with associated digital surface models. In 2016 a permanent terrestrial laser scanner was installed on Im hintern Eis (3244 m a.s.l. to continuously observe almost the entire area of Hintereisferner. The data and research undertaken at the sites of investigation in the Rofental area enable combined research of cryospheric, atmospheric and hydrological processes in complex terrain, and support the development of several state-of-the-art glacier mass balance and hydroclimatological models. The institutions taking part in the Rofental research framework promote their site in several international research initiatives. In INARCH (International Network for Alpine Research Catchment Hydrology, http://words.usask.ca/inarch, all original research data sets are now provided to the scientific community according to the

  13. The Rofental: a high Alpine research basin (1890-3770 m a.s.l.) in the Ötztal Alps (Austria) with over 150 years of hydrometeorological and glaciological observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strasser, Ulrich; Marke, Thomas; Braun, Ludwig; Escher-Vetter, Heidi; Juen, Irmgard; Kuhn, Michael; Maussion, Fabien; Mayer, Christoph; Nicholson, Lindsey; Niedertscheider, Klaus; Sailer, Rudolf; Stötter, Johann; Weber, Markus; Kaser, Georg

    2018-01-01

    A comprehensive hydrometeorological and glaciological data set is presented, originating from a multitude of glaciological, meteorological, hydrological and laser scanning recordings at research sites in the Rofental (1891-3772 m a.s.l., Ötztal Alps, Austria). The data sets span a period of 150 years and hence represent a unique time series of rich high-altitude mountain observations. Their collection was originally initiated to support scientific investigation of the glaciers Hintereisferner, Kesselwandferner and Vernagtferner. Annual mass balance, glacier front variation, flow velocities and photographic records of the status of these glaciers were recorded. Later, additional measurements of meteorological and hydrological variables were undertaken, and over time a number of autonomous weather stations and runoff gauges were brought into operation; the available data now comprise records of temperature, relative humidity, short- and longwave radiation, wind speed and direction, air pressure, precipitation, and river water levels. Since 2001, a series of distributed (airborne and terrestrial) laser scans is available, along with associated digital surface models. In 2016 a permanent terrestrial laser scanner was installed on Im hintern Eis (3244 m a.s.l.) to continuously observe almost the entire area of Hintereisferner. The data and research undertaken at the sites of investigation in the Rofental area enable combined research of cryospheric, atmospheric and hydrological processes in complex terrain, and support the development of several state-of-the-art glacier mass balance and hydroclimatological models. The institutions taking part in the Rofental research framework promote their site in several international research initiatives. In INARCH (International Network for Alpine Research Catchment Hydrology, http://words.usask.ca/inarch), all original research data sets are now provided to the scientific community according to the Creative Commons Attribution

  14. Geomorphology and hydrochemistry of 12 Alpine lakes in the Gran Paradiso National Park, Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aldo MARCHETTO

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Twelve Alpine lakes located in the Gran Paradiso National Park, in the western Italian Alps, were sampled during the ice free period in 2008 and analysed for the main morphological, chemical and physical variables in relation to the characteristics of their watershed, with the aim to create a reference database for present and future ecological studies and to support conservation politics with scientific data. The results highlighted that weathering process and direct precipitation input are the main factors determining the hydrochemistry of the studied lakes; moreover the morphological characteristics highly affects the physical properties of the lakes starting from stratification process. The acidification status, the atmospheric input of N compounds and the supply of nutrients were considered in detail. The studied lakes seem to be well preserved by acidification risk. Comparing data from Gran Paradiso National Park with data from European mountain regions ranging in N deposition rates, allows to consider long range anthropogenic impact: the detection of relative low Total Nitrogen (TN concentration is not necessarily a synonym of a soft impact of long range pollutants, being the final nitrogen concentration dependent from retention process, closely related to catchment characteristics, besides N deposition rates; moreover the dominance of Inorganic Nitrogen (IN on Organic Nitrogen (ON highlights that the lakes are interested by N deposition and probably by long range transport of pollutants produced in the urbanized area surrounding the massif. However the Gran Paradiso National Park area is by far less affected by atmospheric pollutants than other Alpine regions, as the Central Alps. Total Phosphorus (TP concentration in Gran Paradiso lakes (1-13 μg L-1, mean level = 4 μg L-1 is an index of oligotrophic and ultraoligotrophic conditions and according to Redfield's ratio phosphorus is mainly the phytoplankton growth limiting element

  15. Brittle deformation during Alpine basal accretion and the origin of seismicity nests above the subduction interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menant, Armel; Angiboust, Samuel; Monié, Patrick; Oncken, Onno; Guigner, Jean-Michel

    2018-04-01

    Geophysical observations on active subduction zones have evidenced high seismicity clusters at 20-40 km depth in the fore-arc region whose origin remains controversial. We report here field observations of pervasive pseudotachylyte networks (interpreted as evidence for paleo-seismicity) in the now-exhumed Valpelline continental unit (Dent Blanche complex, NW. Alps, Italy), a tectonic sliver accreted to the upper plate at c. 30 km depth during the Paleocene Alpine subduction. Pre-alpine granulite-facies paragneiss from the core of the Valpelline unit are crosscut by widespread, mm to cm-thick pseudotachylyte veins. Co-seismic heating and subsequent cooling led to the formation of Ti-rich garnet rims, ilmenite needles, Ca-rich plagioclase, biotite microliths and hercynite micro-crystals. 39Ar-40Ar dating yields a 51-54 Ma age range for these veins, thus suggesting that frictional melting events occurred near peak burial conditions while the Valpelline unit was already inserted inside the duplex structure. In contrast, the base of the Valpelline unit underwent synchronous ductile and brittle, seismic deformation under water-bearing conditions followed by a re-equilibration at c. 40 Ma (39Ar-40Ar on retrograded pseudotachylyte veins) during exhumation-related deformation. Calculated rheological profiles suggest that pseudotachylyte veins from the dry core of the granulite unit record upper plate micro-seismicity (Mw 2-3) formed under very high differential stresses (>500 MPa) while the sheared base of the unit underwent repeated brittle-ductile deformation at much lower differential stresses (<40 MPa) in a fluid-saturated environment. These results demonstrate that some of the seismicity clusters nested along and above the plate interface may reflect the presence of stiff tectonic slivers rheologically analogous to the Valpelline unit acting as repeatedly breaking asperities in the basal accretion region of active subduction zones.

  16. X-ray absorption intensity at high-energy region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fujikawa, Takashi; Kaneko, Katsumi

    2012-01-01

    We theoretically discuss X-ray absorption intensity in high-energy region far from the deepest core threshold to explain the morphology-dependent mass attenuation coefficient of some carbon systems, carbon nanotubes (CNTs), highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) and fullerenes (C 60 ). The present theoretical approach is based on the many-body X-ray absorption theory including the intrinsic losses (shake-up losses). In the high-energy region the absorption coefficient has correction term dependent on the solid state effects given in terms of the polarization part of the screened Coulomb interaction W p . We also discuss the tail of the valence band X-ray absorption intensity. In the carbon systems C 2s contribution has some influence on the attenuation coefficient even in the high energy region at 20 keV.

  17. Alpine hydropower schemes and their 'remote influence' on lakes and rivers downstream

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wuest, A.

    2003-01-01

    This article discusses the effect that alpine dams and reservoirs have on lakes and rivers in the lowlands. Not only the contribution of Swiss alpine hydropower installations to Switzerland's electricity generation capacity is mentioned, but also the way they 'export' ecological deficits to lower-lying regions. Examples of this are quoted, including, for example, the filtering-out of around 50% of water-borne particles in the river Rhone by the dams in its catchment area. The consequences of such effects for the ecology of lakes and rivers are discussed. Further examples of how the alpine dams hold back nutrients and regulate the flow and temperature of rivers are given and the resulting ecological effects are commented on

  18. Turbine component casting core with high resolution region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamel, Ahmed; Merrill, Gary B.

    2014-08-26

    A hollow turbine engine component with complex internal features can include a first region and a second, high resolution region. The first region can be defined by a first ceramic core piece formed by any conventional process, such as by injection molding or transfer molding. The second region can be defined by a second ceramic core piece formed separately by a method effective to produce high resolution features, such as tomo lithographic molding. The first core piece and the second core piece can be joined by interlocking engagement that once subjected to an intermediate thermal heat treatment process thermally deform to form a three dimensional interlocking joint between the first and second core pieces by allowing thermal creep to irreversibly interlock the first and second core pieces together such that the joint becomes physically locked together providing joint stability through thermal processing.

  19. Impact of the Chernobyl fallout in the alpine environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gastberger, M.; Lettner, H.; Hofmann, W.; Pohl-Rueling, J.; Steinhaeusler, N.F.; Hubmer, A.

    1997-01-01

    In Austria the alpine regions received the highest fallout contamination, showing a very inhomogeneous spatial distribution of the surface deposition. About half of the national territory is within alpine regions, which are very different in times of underlying bedrock and soil characteristic. Since this is the controlling factor for the radionuclide uptake of the vegetation, it is crucial for the long-term effects of radioactive fallout. Different studies have been carried out in the Province of Salzburg (area: 7154 km 2 ) over the past ten years, addressing a broad spectrum of issues, such as: measurement of the spatial distribution of the fallout, research in monitoring techniques comparison of theoretical calculations with actual in vivo-measurements of nuclide uptake by man for different population groups, and the investigation of biological effects. When considering the radioecological effects of the Chernobyl fallout a distinction has to be made between the short-term effects immediately following the fallout and the long-term effects. While the short term effects are controlled by the physical characteristics of the fallout, similar for the whole region, the long-term effects are more determined by the radioecological properties of the environments affected which are much more variable than the fallout-characteristics

  20. Lack of sex-biased dispersal promotes fine-scale genetic structure in alpine ungulates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roffler, Gretchen H.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Luikart, Gordon; Sage, George K.; Pilgrim, Kristy L.; Adams, Layne G.; Schwartz, Michael K.

    2014-01-01

    Identifying patterns of fine-scale genetic structure in natural populations can advance understanding of critical ecological processes such as dispersal and gene flow across heterogeneous landscapes. Alpine ungulates generally exhibit high levels of genetic structure due to female philopatry and patchy configuration of mountain habitats. We assessed the spatial scale of genetic structure and the amount of gene flow in 301 Dall’s sheep (Ovis dalli dalli) at the landscape level using 15 nuclear microsatellites and 473 base pairs of the mitochondrial (mtDNA) control region. Dall’s sheep exhibited significant genetic structure within contiguous mountain ranges, but mtDNA structure occurred at a broader geographic scale than nuclear DNA within the study area, and mtDNA structure for other North American mountain sheep populations. No evidence of male-mediated gene flow or greater philopatry of females was observed; there was little difference between markers with different modes of inheritance (pairwise nuclear DNA F ST = 0.004–0.325; mtDNA F ST = 0.009–0.544), and males were no more likely than females to be recent immigrants. Historical patterns based on mtDNA indicate separate northern and southern lineages and a pattern of expansion following regional glacial retreat. Boundaries of genetic clusters aligned geographically with prominent mountain ranges, icefields, and major river valleys based on Bayesian and hierarchical modeling of microsatellite and mtDNA data. Our results suggest that fine-scale genetic structure in Dall’s sheep is influenced by limited dispersal, and structure may be weaker in populations occurring near ancestral levels of density and distribution in continuous habitats compared to other alpine ungulates that have experienced declines and marked habitat fragmentation.

  1. Aortic Dissection Type A in Alpine Skiers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Schachner

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Patients and Methods. 140 patients with aortic dissection type A were admitted for cardiac surgery. Seventy-seven patients experienced their dissection in the winter season (from November to April. We analyzed cases of ascending aortic dissection associated with alpine skiing. Results. In 17 patients we found skiing-related aortic dissections. Skiers were taller (180 (172–200 cm versus 175 (157–191 cm, and heavier (90 (68–125 kg versus 80 (45–110 kg, than nonskiers. An extension of aortic dissection into the aortic arch, the descending thoracic aorta, and the abdominal aorta was found in 91%, 74%, and 69%, respectively, with no significant difference between skiers and nonskiers. Skiers experienced RCA ostium dissection requiring CABG in 17.6% while this was true for 5% of nonskiers (. Hospital mortality of skiers was 6% versus 13% in nonskiers (. The skiers live at an altitude of 170 (0–853 m.a.s.l. and experience their dissection at 1602 (1185–3105; m.a.s.l. In 82% symptom start was during recreational skiing without any trauma. Conclusion. Skiing associated aortic dissection type A is usually nontraumatic. The persons affected live at low altitudes and practice an outdoor sport at unusual high altitude at cold temperatures. Postoperative outcome is good.

  2. Aortic Dissection Type A in Alpine Skiers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schachner, Thomas; Fischler, Nikolaus; Dumfarth, Julia; Bonaros, Nikolaos; Krapf, Christoph; Schobersberger, Wolfgang; Grimm, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Patients and Methods. 140 patients with aortic dissection type A were admitted for cardiac surgery. Seventy-seven patients experienced their dissection in the winter season (from November to April). We analyzed cases of ascending aortic dissection associated with alpine skiing. Results. In 17 patients we found skiing-related aortic dissections. Skiers were taller (180 (172–200) cm versus 175 (157–191) cm, P = 0.008) and heavier (90 (68–125) kg versus 80 (45–110) kg, P = 0.002) than nonskiers. An extension of aortic dissection into the aortic arch, the descending thoracic aorta, and the abdominal aorta was found in 91%, 74%, and 69%, respectively, with no significant difference between skiers and nonskiers. Skiers experienced RCA ostium dissection requiring CABG in 17.6% while this was true for 5% of nonskiers (P = 0.086). Hospital mortality of skiers was 6% versus 13% in nonskiers (P = 0.399). The skiers live at an altitude of 170 (0–853) m.a.s.l. and experience their dissection at 1602 (1185–3105; P < 0.001) m.a.s.l. In 82% symptom start was during recreational skiing without any trauma. Conclusion. Skiing associated aortic dissection type A is usually nontraumatic. The persons affected live at low altitudes and practice an outdoor sport at unusual high altitude at cold temperatures. Postoperative outcome is good. PMID:23971024

  3. Climate-scale modelling of suspended sediment load in an Alpine catchment debris flow (Rio Cordon-northeastern Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diodato, Nazzareno; Mao, Luca; Borrelli, Pasquale; Panagos, Panos; Fiorillo, Francesco; Bellocchi, Gianni

    2018-05-01

    Pulsing storms and prolonged rainfall can drive hydrological damaging events in mountain regions with soil erosion and debris flow in river catchments. The paper presents a parsimonious model for estimating climate forcing on sediment loads in an Alpine catchment (Rio Cordon, northeastern Italian Alps). Hydroclimatic forcing was interpreted by the novel CliSMSSL (Climate-Scale Modelling of Suspended Sediment Load) model to estimate annual sediment loads. We used annual data on suspended-solid loads monitored at an experimental station from 1987 to 2001 and on monthly precipitation data. The quality of sediment load data was critically examined, and one outlying year was identified and removed from further analyses. This outlier revealed that our model underestimates exceptionally high sediment loads in years characterized by a severe flood event. For all other years, the CliSMSSL performed well, with a determination coefficient (R2) equal to 0.67 and a mean absolute error (MAE) of 129 Mg y-1. The calibrated model for the period 1986-2010 was used to reconstruct sediment loads in the river catchment for historical times when detailed precipitation records are not available. For the period 1810-2010, the model results indicate that the past centuries have been characterized by large interannual to interdecadal fluctuations in the conditions affecting sediment loads. This paper argues that climate-induced erosion processes in Alpine areas and their impact on environment should be given more attention in discussions about climate-driven strategies. Future work should focus on delineating the extents of these findings (e.g., at other catchments of the European Alpine belt) as well as investigating the dynamics for the formation of sediment loads.

  4. Glucose homeostasis and cardiovascular disease biomarkers in older alpine skiers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dela, F; Niederseer, David; Patsch, Wolfgang

    2011-01-01

    Alpine skiing and ski training involves elements of static and dynamic training, and may therefore improve insulin sensitivity. Healthy men and women who where beginners/intermediate level of alpine skiing, were studied before (Pre) and immediately after (Post) 12 weeks of alpine ski training. Af...

  5. Larch dwarf mistletoe not found on alpine larch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert L. Mathiasen; Brian W. Geils; Clinton E. Carlson; Frank G. Hawksworth

    1995-01-01

    Reports of larch dwarf mistletoe parasitizing alpine larch are based on two collections of this host/parasite combination made by J.R. Weir in Montana during the early 1900s. Examination of host material from these collections indicates that the host is western larch, not alpine larch as previously reported. Attempts to locate larch dwarf mistletoe on alpine larch were...

  6. Retrieval of free-tropospheric BrO from MAX-DOAS measurements at the high-altitude alpine station of Jungfraujoch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Roozendael, Michel; Hendrick, Francois; De Smedt, Isabelle; Fayt, Caroline; Gielen, Clio; Hermans, Christian; Pinardi, Gaia; Tack, Frederik; Theys, Nicolas

    2014-05-01

    There are currently many open questions about the sources, transport, and photochemical processing that control the abundance of BrO and its precursors in the global troposphere. Recent experimental studies based on various platforms and instrumentations indicate contrasting results reflecting the scarcity of the measurements and the experimental challenge of quantifying the typically low abundance levels of BrO. Modeling studies indicate however that the presence of only 1-2 pptv levels of reactive bromine has important consequences for free tropospheric ozone with indirect climate implications. The MAX-DOAS technique offers high sensitivity for near-surface trace gas measurements and it is well suited to BrO detection. From a high altitude site such as the Jungfraujoch which is located in the Swiss Alps at about 3600 m ASL, the free-troposphere can be sampled under favourable conditions. We report on attempts to quantify the free tropospheric BrO level based on MAXDOAS measurements performed by BIRA-IASB in the period from June 2010 until December 2012. Retrievals are based on the DOAS method followed by vertical profile inversion using an Optimal Estimation scheme. The possible sources of bias that can affect the spectral retrieval of BrO are carefully investigated and various sensitivity tests are performed to assess the stability of the inversion. Results are compared with independent estimates of the mid-latitude tropospheric BrO based on satellite measurements.

  7. Isotope Investigations at an Alpine Karst Aquifer by Means of On-Site Measurements with High Time Resolution and Near Realtime Data Availability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leis, A.; Plieschnegger, M.; Harum, T.; Stadler, H. [Joanneum Research, Institute for Water, Energy and Resources, Graz (Austria); Schmitt, R. [Meteorologie Consult GmbH, Koenigstein (Germany); Van Pelt, A. [Picarro Inc., Sunnyvale, California (United States); Zerobin, W. [Vienna Waterworks, Vienna (Austria)

    2013-07-15

    For a lot of hydrological isotope investigations it would be helpful to conduct on-site measurements with a very high time resolution. Recent developments of a highly sensitive gas analyser on the basis of so called 'Cavity Ring Down Spectroscopy' (CRDS) has lead to a new class of on-site capable measuring devices, the wavelength scanned (WS)-CRDS. In the framework of a new project it succeeded for the first time in measuring the stable environmental isotopes of the water on-site and on-line at one of the most important karst springs in Austria. It was necessary, to adapt the WS-CRDS system for on-site application. Particularly the sampling device had to be adopted to get samples from the flow of the spring to the WS-CDRS system in real time. The system was installed at the spring during snowmelt with measuring intervals of fewer than 10 minutes. This measuring device was combined with a near real time data transmission system, based on LEO satellites. This allowed a dissemination of the data via the internet and, for registered users, also a download possibility of the data. (author)

  8. Volatile organic compounds in alpine valleys: sources, evolutions and transformations; Les composes organiques volatils dans les vallees alpines: sources, evolutions et transformations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Colomb, A.

    2002-12-01

    Dynamic and chemical specificity in alpine valleys was the principal goal during the POVA project (Pollution des Vallees Alpines). Volatile Organic Compounds emissions in troposphere have important impacts on animal lives and environment. Then, the aim of this work was the improvement of the biogenic or anthropogenic VOC sources determination, of VOC transformation and evolution in mountain areas. During this project, the realisation of a daily continuous measurements campaign of a few chemical compounds allowed the understanding of the seasonal variations of these compounds. The goals of intensive field campaigns, realised in August 2000 and January 2001, were to understand photochemical process in a temporal and geographic small scale and to follow diurnal variation of different pollutants in summer and winter. Moreover, the VOC data would be used to develop and validate coupled atmospheric dynamic/chemical model. Therefore, these VOC measures give answer to two lacks of knowledge in alpine valleys about: - Biogenic and anthropogenic VOC respective part, and their main sources, - VOC photochemical reactions in alpine valleys, according to seasonal and diurnal cycles. Finally, we presented two atypical days results, in Maurienne valley during a Saharan episode in August 2000. This episode permitted to understand mass air transport mechanism in mountain region. (author)

  9. A High-resolution Reanalysis for the European CORDEX Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bentzien, Sabrina; Bollmeyer, Christoph; Crewell, Susanne; Friederichs, Petra; Hense, Andreas; Keller, Jan; Keune, Jessica; Kneifel, Stefan; Ohlwein, Christian; Pscheidt, Ieda; Redl, Stephanie; Steinke, Sandra

    2014-05-01

    A High-resolution Reanalysis for the European CORDEX Region Within the Hans-Ertel-Centre for Weather Research (HErZ), the climate monitoring branch concentrates efforts on the assessment and analysis of regional climate in Germany and Europe. In joint cooperation with DWD (German Meteorological Service), a high-resolution reanalysis system based on the COSMO model has been developed. Reanalyses gain more and more importance as a source of meteorological information for many purposes and applications. Several global reanalyses projects (e.g., ERA, MERRA, CSFR, JMA9) produce and verify these data sets to provide time series as long as possible combined with a high data quality. Due to a spatial resolution down to 50-70km and 3-hourly temporal output, they are not suitable for small scale problems (e.g., regional climate assessment, meso-scale NWP verification, input for subsequent models such as river runoff simulations). The implementation of regional reanalyses based on a limited area model along with a data assimilation scheme is able to generate reanalysis data sets with high spatio-temporal resolution. The work presented here focuses on the regional reanalysis for Europe with a domain matching the CORDEX-EURO-11 specifications, albeit at a higher spatial resolution, i.e., 0.055° (6km) instead of 0.11° (12km). The COSMO reanalysis system comprises the assimilation of observational data using the existing nudging scheme of COSMO and is complemented by a special soil moisture analysis and boundary conditions given by ERA-interim data. The reanalysis data set currently covers 6 years (2007-2012). The evaluation of the reanalyses is done using independent observations with special emphasis on precipitation and high-impact weather situations. The development and evaluation of the COSMO-based reanalysis for the CORDEX-Euro domain can be seen as a preparation for joint European activities on the development of an ensemble system of regional reanalyses for Europe.

  10. High intensity region segmentation in MR imaging of multiple sclerosis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodrigo, F; Filipuzzi, M; Graffigna, J P; Isoardi, R; Noceti, M

    2013-01-01

    Numerous pathologies are often manifest in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) as hyperintense or bright regions as compared to normal tissue. It is of particular interest to develop an algorithm to detect, identify and define those Regions of Interest (ROI) when analyzing MRI studies, particularly for lesions of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The objective of this study is to analyze those parameters which optimize segmentation of the areas of interest. To establish which areas should be considered as hyperintense regions, we developed a database (DB), with studies of patients diagnosed with MS. This disease causes axonal demyelination and it is expressed as bright regions in PD, T2 and FLAIR MRI sequences. Thus, with more than 4300 hyperintense regions validated by an expert physician, an algorithm was developed to detect such spots, approximating the results the expert obtained. Alongside these hyperintense lesion regions, it also detected bone regions with high intensity levels, similar to the intensity of the lesions, but with other features that allow a good differentiation.The algorithm will then detect ROIs with similar intensity levels and performs classification through data mining techniques

  11. Diversity and distribution of lichen-associated fungi in the Ny-Ålesund Region (Svalbard, High Arctic) as revealed by 454 pyrosequencing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Wei, Xin-Li; Zhang, Yu-Qin; Liu, Hong-Yu; Yu, Li-Yan

    2015-01-01

    This study assessed the diversity and distribution of fungal communities associated with seven lichen species in the Ny-Ålesund Region (Svalbard, High Arctic) using Roche 454 pyrosequencing with fungal-specific primers targeting the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of the ribosomal rRNA gene. Lichen-associated fungal communities showed high diversity, with a total of 42,259 reads belonging to 370 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) being found. Of these OTUs, 294 belonged to Ascomycota, 54 to Basidiomycota, 2 to Zygomycota, and 20 to unknown fungi. Leotiomycetes, Dothideomycetes, and Eurotiomycetes were the major classes, whereas the dominant orders were Helotiales, Capnodiales, and Chaetothyriales. Interestingly, most fungal OTUs were closely related to fungi from various habitats (e.g., soil, rock, plant tissues) in the Arctic, Antarctic and alpine regions, which suggests that living in association with lichen thalli may be a transient stage of life cycle for these fungi and that long-distance dispersal may be important to the fungi in the Arctic. In addition, host-related factors shaped the lichen-associated fungal communities in this region. Taken together, these results suggest that lichens thalli act as reservoirs of diverse fungi from various niches, which may improve our understanding of fungal evolution and ecology in the Arctic. PMID:26463847

  12. Diversity and distribution of lichen-associated fungi in the Ny-Ålesund Region (Svalbard, High Arctic) as revealed by 454 pyrosequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Wei, Xin-Li; Zhang, Yu-Qin; Liu, Hong-Yu; Yu, Li-Yan

    2015-10-14

    This study assessed the diversity and distribution of fungal communities associated with seven lichen species in the Ny-Ålesund Region (Svalbard, High Arctic) using Roche 454 pyrosequencing with fungal-specific primers targeting the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of the ribosomal rRNA gene. Lichen-associated fungal communities showed high diversity, with a total of 42,259 reads belonging to 370 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) being found. Of these OTUs, 294 belonged to Ascomycota, 54 to Basidiomycota, 2 to Zygomycota, and 20 to unknown fungi. Leotiomycetes, Dothideomycetes, and Eurotiomycetes were the major classes, whereas the dominant orders were Helotiales, Capnodiales, and Chaetothyriales. Interestingly, most fungal OTUs were closely related to fungi from various habitats (e.g., soil, rock, plant tissues) in the Arctic, Antarctic and alpine regions, which suggests that living in association with lichen thalli may be a transient stage of life cycle for these fungi and that long-distance dispersal may be important to the fungi in the Arctic. In addition, host-related factors shaped the lichen-associated fungal communities in this region. Taken together, these results suggest that lichens thalli act as reservoirs of diverse fungi from various niches, which may improve our understanding of fungal evolution and ecology in the Arctic.

  13. Population Spatial Dynamics of Larix potaninii in Alpine Treeline Ecotone in the Eastern Margin of the Tibetan Plateau, China

    OpenAIRE

    Jia’nan Cui; Jihong Qin; Hui Sun

    2017-01-01

    The high-altitude treeline is known to be sensitive to climate variability, and is thus considered as a bio-monitoring indicator of climate change. However, our understanding of the population dynamics and the cumulative climate-change effects on the alpine treeline ecotone in recent decades is limited. Here, we investigated the population dynamics of Larix potainii on the south- and north-facing slopes in the alpine treeline ecotone in the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau, China, includ...

  14. Seedling recruitment of forb species under experimental microhabitats in alpine grassland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, S. S.; Yu, L.; Lin, W. G.; Pingi, T. F.

    2015-01-01

    Which factors limit plant seedling recruitment in alpine meadow of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP), China? This study examined the relative influence of seed mass and microsites (resulted from grazing disturbance) on field seedling emergence and survival of nineteen alpine herbaceous species with a range of traits in QTP. Seed mass had significant effects on seedling emergence and survival eliminating influence of light and nutrient variances among these species. The larger-seed species had more advantageous than the smaller-seed species in seedling survival, but it was disadvatage for seedling emergence, especially under high nutrient availability and low light intensity conditions. Light had obvious effects on seedling survival, but less effects on seedling emergence for these species. Moreover, nutrient and light treatments altered the regression relationships of seed mass and seedling emergence and survival and the order of significances was L25>L50>L100>L10>L4. These results suggested that seed mass may restrict seedling recruitment processes, however, light and nutrient availability all have significant effects on seedling emergence and survival for these alpine species. Moderate light intensity was propitious to seedling emergence and survival in alpine grassland. This suggests that ecological factors in alpine grassland provide a stochastic influence on different seed-mass species. These trends may help to explain why many small-seeded species of Asteraceae and Gramineae tend to be more abundant in disturbed habitats. (author)

  15. High beta and second stability region transport and stability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1990-01-01

    This document summarizes progress made on the research of high beta and second region transport and stability. In the area second stability region studies we report on an investigation of the possibility of second region access in the center of TFTR ''supershots.'' The instabilities found may coincide with experimental observation. Significant progress has been made on the resistive stability properties of high beta poloidal ''supershot'' discharges. For these studies profiles were taken from the TRANSP transport analysis code which analyzes experimental data. Invoking flattening of the pressure profile on mode rational surfaces causes tearing modes to persist into the experimental range of interest. Further, the experimental observation of the modes seems to be consistent with the predictions of the MHD model. In addition, code development in several areas has proceeded

  16. Modelling of Aerodynamic Drag in Alpine Skiing

    OpenAIRE

    Elfmark, Ola

    2017-01-01

    Most of the breaking force in the speed disciplines in alpine skiing is caused by the aerodynamic drag, and a better knowledge of the drag force is therefore desirable to gain time in races. In this study a complete database of how the drag area (CDA) changes, with respect to the different body segments, was made and used to explain a complete body motion in alpine skiing. Three experiments were performed in the wind tunnel at NTNU, Trondheim. The database from a full body measurement on an a...

  17. Contrasting diversity patterns of crenarchaeal, bacterial and fungal soil communities in an alpine landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucie Zinger

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available The advent of molecular techniques in microbial ecology has aroused interest in gaining an understanding about the spatial distribution of regional pools of soil microbes and the main drivers responsible of these spatial patterns. Here, we assessed the distribution of crenarcheal, bacterial and fungal communities in an alpine landscape displaying high turnover in plant species over short distances. Our aim is to determine the relative contribution of plant species composition, environmental conditions, and geographic isolation on microbial community distribution.Eleven types of habitats that best represent the landscape heterogeneity were investigated. Crenarchaeal, bacterial and fungal communities were described by means of Single Strand Conformation Polymorphism. Relationships between microbial beta diversity patterns were examined by using Bray-Curtis dissimilarities and Principal Coordinate Analyses. Distance-based redundancy analyses and variation partitioning were used to estimate the relative contributions of different drivers on microbial beta diversity. Microbial communities tended to be habitat-specific and did not display significant spatial autocorrelation. Microbial beta diversity correlated with soil pH. Fungal beta-diversity was mainly related to soil organic matter. Though the effect of plant species composition was significant for all microbial groups, it was much stronger for Fungi. In contrast, geographic distances did not have any effect on microbial beta diversity.Microbial communities exhibit non-random spatial patterns of diversity in alpine landscapes. Crenarcheal, bacterial and fungal community turnover is high and associated with plant species composition through different set of soil variables, but is not caused by geographical isolation.

  18. Riparian vegetation in the alpine connectome: Terrestrial-aquatic and terrestrial-terrestrial interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaharescu, Dragos G; Palanca-Soler, Antonio; Hooda, Peter S; Tanase, Catalin; Burghelea, Carmen I; Lester, Richard N

    2017-12-01

    Alpine regions are under increased attention worldwide for their critical role in early biogeochemical cycles, their high sensitivity to environmental change, and as repositories of natural resources of high quality. Their riparian ecosystems, at the interface between aquatic and terrestrial environments, play important geochemical functions in the watershed and are biodiversity hotspots, despite a harsh climate and topographic setting. With climate change rapidly affecting the alpine biome, we still lack a comprehensive understanding of the extent of interactions between riparian surface, lake and catchment environments. A total of 189 glacial - origin lakes were surveyed in the Central Pyrenees to test how key elements of the lake and terrestrial environments interact at different scales to shape riparian plant composition. Secondly, we evaluated how underlying ecotope features drive the formation of natural communities potentially sensitive to environmental change and assessed their habitat distribution. At the macroscale, vegetation composition responded to pan-climatic gradients altitude and latitude, which captured in a narrow geographic area the transition between large European climatic zones. Hydrodynamics was the main catchment-scale factor connecting riparian vegetation with major water fluxes, followed by topography and geomorphology. Lake sediment Mg and Pb, and water Mn and Fe contents reflected local influences from mafic bedrock and soil water saturation. Community analysis identified four keystone ecosystems: (i) damp ecotone, (ii) snow bed-silicate bedrock, (iii) wet heath, and (iv) calcareous substrate. These communities and their connections with ecotope elements could be at risk from a number of environmental change factors including warmer seasons, snow line and lowland species advancement, increased nutrient/metal input and water level fluctuations. The results imply important natural terrestrial-aquatic linkages in the riparian environment

  19. Regional development via high-speed rail : A study of the Stockholm-Mälaren region and possibilities for Melbourne-regional Victoria

    OpenAIRE

    Bayley, Michael

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this thesis is to examine, based on a study of the regional high-speed corridors in the Stockholm-Mälaren Region, the possibilities for regional high-speed rail in Melbourne-regional Victoria (Australia) to improve accessibility, and achieve regional development and balanced growth between the capital and its surrounding regions. It deals with the concept of 'regional' high-speed rail, a variant of classic high-speed rail that serves centres along regional corridors stemming fr...

  20. Investigation of the effective peak supersaturation for liquid-phase clouds at the high-alpine site Jungfraujoch, Switzerland (3580 m a.s.l.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Hammer

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Aerosols influence the Earth's radiation budget directly through absorption and scattering of solar radiation in the atmosphere but also indirectly by modifying the properties of clouds. However, climate models still suffer from large uncertainties as a result of insufficient understanding of aerosol-cloud interactions. At the high altitude research station Jungfraujoch (JFJ; 3580 m a.s.l., Switzerland cloud condensation nuclei (CCN number concentrations at eight different supersaturations (SS from 0.24% to 1.18% were measured using a CCN counter during Summer 2011. Simultaneously, in-situ aerosol activation properties of the prevailing ambient clouds were investigated by measuring the total and interstitial (non-activated dry particle number size distributions behind two different inlet systems. Combining all experimental data, a new method was developed to retrieve the so-called effective peak supersaturation SSpeak, as a measure of the SS at which ambient clouds are formed. A 17-month CCN climatology was then used to retrieve the SSpeak values also for four earlier summer campaigns (2000, 2002, 2004 and 2010 where no direct CCN data were available. The SSpeak values varied between 0.01% and 2.0% during all campaigns. An overall median SSpeak of 0.35% and dry activation diameter of 87 nm was observed. It was found that the difference in topography between northwest and southeast plays an important role for the effective peak supersaturation in clouds formed in the vicinity of the JFJ, while differences in the number concentration of potential CCN only play a minor role. Results show that air masses coming from the southeast (with the slowly rising terrain of the Aletsch Glacier generally experience lower SSpeak values than air masses coming from the northwest (steep slope. The observed overall median values were 0.41% and 0.22% for northwest and southeast wind conditions, respectively, corresponding to literature values for cumulus clouds and

  1. Evaluation of a High-Resolution Regional Reanalysis for Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohlwein, C.; Wahl, S.; Keller, J. D.; Bollmeyer, C.

    2014-12-01

    Reanalyses gain more and more importance as a source of meteorological information for many purposes and applications. Several global reanalyses projects (e.g., ERA, MERRA, CSFR, JMA9) produce and verify these data sets to provide time series as long as possible combined with a high data quality. Due to a spatial resolution down to 50-70km and 3-hourly temporal output, they are not suitable for small scale problems (e.g., regional climate assessment, meso-scale NWP verification, input for subsequent models such as river runoff simulations). The implementation of regional reanalyses based on a limited area model along with a data assimilation scheme is able to generate reanalysis data sets with high spatio-temporal resolution. Within the Hans-Ertel-Centre for Weather Research (HErZ), the climate monitoring branch concentrates efforts on the assessment and analysis of regional climate in Germany and Europe. In joint cooperation with DWD (German Meteorological Service), a high-resolution reanalysis system based on the COSMO model has been developed. The regional reanalysis for Europe matches the domain of the CORDEX EURO-11 specifications, albeit at a higher spatial resolution, i.e., 0.055° (6km) instead of 0.11° (12km) and comprises the assimilation of observational data using the existing nudging scheme of COSMO complemented by a special soil moisture analysis with boundary conditions provided by ERA-Interim data. The reanalysis data set covers 6 years (2007-2012) and is currently extended to 16 years. Extensive evaluation of the reanalysis is performed using independent observations with special emphasis on precipitation and high-impact weather situations indicating a better representation of small scale variability. Further, the evaluation shows an added value of the regional reanalysis with respect to the forcing ERA Interim reanalysis and compared to a pure high-resolution dynamical downscaling approach without data assimilation.

  2. The high-resolution regional reanalysis COSMO-REA6

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohlwein, C.

    2016-12-01

    Reanalyses gain more and more importance as a source of meteorological information for many purposes and applications. Several global reanalyses projects (e.g., ERA, MERRA, CSFR, JMA9) produce and verify these data sets to provide time series as long as possible combined with a high data quality. Due to a spatial resolution down to 50-70km and 3-hourly temporal output, they are not suitable for small scale problems (e.g., regional climate assessment, meso-scale NWP verification, input for subsequent models such as river runoff simulations). The implementation of regional reanalyses based on a limited area model along with a data assimilation scheme is able to generate reanalysis data sets with high spatio-temporal resolution. Within the Hans-Ertel-Centre for Weather Research (HErZ), the climate monitoring branch concentrates efforts on the assessment and analysis of regional climate in Germany and Europe. In joint cooperation with DWD (German Meteorological Service), a high-resolution reanalysis system based on the COSMO model has been developed. The regional reanalysis for Europe matches the domain of the CORDEX EURO-11 specifications, albeit at a higher spatial resolution, i.e., 0.055° (6km) instead of 0.11° (12km) and comprises the assimilation of observational data using the existing nudging scheme of COSMO complemented by a special soil moisture analysis with boundary conditions provided by ERA-Interim data. The reanalysis data set covers the past 20 years. Extensive evaluation of the reanalysis is performed using independent observations with special emphasis on precipitation and high-impact weather situations indicating a better representation of small scale variability. Further, the evaluation shows an added value of the regional reanalysis with respect to the forcing ERA Interim reanalysis and compared to a pure high-resolution dynamical downscaling approach without data assimilation.

  3. A high-resolution regional reanalysis for Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohlwein, C.

    2015-12-01

    Reanalyses gain more and more importance as a source of meteorological information for many purposes and applications. Several global reanalyses projects (e.g., ERA, MERRA, CSFR, JMA9) produce and verify these data sets to provide time series as long as possible combined with a high data quality. Due to a spatial resolution down to 50-70km and 3-hourly temporal output, they are not suitable for small scale problems (e.g., regional climate assessment, meso-scale NWP verification, input for subsequent models such as river runoff simulations). The implementation of regional reanalyses based on a limited area model along with a data assimilation scheme is able to generate reanalysis data sets with high spatio-temporal resolution. Within the Hans-Ertel-Centre for Weather Research (HErZ), the climate monitoring branch concentrates efforts on the assessment and analysis of regional climate in Germany and Europe. In joint cooperation with DWD (German Meteorological Service), a high-resolution reanalysis system based on the COSMO model has been developed. The regional reanalysis for Europe matches the domain of the CORDEX EURO-11 specifications, albeit at a higher spatial resolution, i.e., 0.055° (6km) instead of 0.11° (12km) and comprises the assimilation of observational data using the existing nudging scheme of COSMO complemented by a special soil moisture analysis with boundary conditions provided by ERA-Interim data. The reanalysis data set covers the past 20 years. Extensive evaluation of the reanalysis is performed using independent observations with special emphasis on precipitation and high-impact weather situations indicating a better representation of small scale variability. Further, the evaluation shows an added value of the regional reanalysis with respect to the forcing ERA Interim reanalysis and compared to a pure high-resolution dynamical downscaling approach without data assimilation.

  4. Modelling channel incision and alpine hillslope development using laser altimetry data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anders, N.S.; Seijmonsbergen, A.C.; Bouten, W.

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a new approach to simulate drainage basin evolution and demonstrates that high resolution elevation data can be used as useful tool for a dynamic simulation of Alpine landscape development, in which channel incision is incorporated in high spatial detail. A vector channel

  5. Seedling regeneration in the alpine treeline ecotone: Comparison of wood microsites and adjacent soil substrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adelaide Chapman Johnson; J. Alan Yeakley

    2016-01-01

    Although climate warming is generally expected to facilitate upward advance of forests, conifer seedling regeneration and survival may be hindered by low substrate moisture, high radiation, and both low and high snow accumulation. To better understand substrate-related factors promoting regeneration in the alpine treeline ecotone, this study compared 2 substrates...

  6. High beta and second stability region transport and stability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    This document describes ideal and resistive MHD studies of high-beta plasmas and of the second stability region. Significant progress is reported on the resistive stability properties of high beta poloidal ''supershot'' discharges. For these studies initial profiles were taken from the TRANSP code which is used extensively to analyze experimental data. When an ad hoc method of removing the finite pressure stabilization of tearing modes is implemented it is shown that there is substantial agreement between MHD stability computation and experiment. In particular, the mode structures observed experimentally are consistent with the predictions of the resistive MHD model. We also report on resistive stability near the transition to the second region in TFTR. Tearing modes associated with a nearby infernal mode may explain the increase in MHD activity seen in high beta supershots and which impede the realization of Q∼1. We also report on a collaborative study with PPPL involving sawtooth stabilization with ICRF

  7. Correlation between the pionization region and the fragmentation region in high energy proton-proton collisions

    CERN Document Server

    Albrow, M G; Barber, D P; Bogaerts, A; Bosnjakovic, B; Brooks, J R; Clegg, A B; Erné, F C; Gee, C N P; Locke, D H; Loebinger, F K; Murphy, P G; Rudge, A; Sens, Johannes C

    1973-01-01

    Measurements are reported of two-particle correlations in high energy proton-proton collisions with one particle in the pionization region and the other a proton in the fragmentation region. The correlation function is independent of x of the fragmentation proton for 0.55

  8. Exploring the patterns of alpine vegetation of Eastern Bhutan: a case study from the Merak Himalaya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamtsho, Karma; Sridith, Kitichate

    2015-01-01

    A survey was conducted from March to September 2012 along the altitudinal gradient of the Jomokungkhar trail in the Merak Himalaya of Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary to study the floristic compositions and the patterns of alpine vegetation of Eastern Bhutan. The vegetation of the sampled plots is classified into five types of communities based on the hierarchical cluster analysis at similarity index 63% viz., (1) Riverine Community; (2) Abies-Rhododendron Woodland Community; (3) Juniperus Scrub Community; (4) Rhododendron Krummholz and (5) Alpine Meadow, based on the floristic compositions. In addition, it was noticed that the fragile alpine environment of the Merak Himalaya has high plant diversity and important plants that are susceptible to the anthropogenic pressures.

  9. Geomorphic determinants of species composition of alpine tundra, Glacier National Park, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    George P. Malanson,; Bengtson, Lindsey E.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2012-01-01

    Because the distribution of alpine tundra is associated with spatially limited cold climates, global warming may threaten its local extent or existence. This notion has been challenged, however, based on observations of the diversity of alpine tundra in small areas primarily due to topographic variation. The importance of diversity in temperature or moisture conditions caused by topographic variation is an open question, and we extend this to geomorphology more generally. The extent to which geomorphic variation per se, based on relatively easily assessed indicators, can account for the variation in alpine tundra community composition is analyzed versus the inclusion of broad indicators of regional climate variation. Visual assessments of topography are quantified and reduced using principal components analysis (PCA). Observations of species cover are reduced using detrended correspondence analysis (DCA). A “best subsets” regression approach using the Akaike Information Criterion for selection of variables is compared to a simple stepwise regression with DCA scores as the dependent variable and scores on significant PCA axes plus more direct measures of topography as independent variables. Models with geographic coordinates (representing regional climate gradients) excluded explain almost as much variation in community composition as models with them included, although they are important contributors to the latter. The geomorphic variables in the model are those associated with local moisture differences such as snowbeds. The potential local variability of alpine tundra can be a buffer against climate change, but change in precipitation may be as important as change in temperature.

  10. A Retrospective Analysis of Concurrent Pathology in ACL-Reconstructed Knees of Elite Alpine Ski Racers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jordan, Matthew J; Doyle-Baker, Patricia; Heard, Mark

    2017-01-01

    /chondral surgery, 60% of meniscal tears and 80% of chondral lesions had worsened since the time of primary ACLR. CONCLUSION: Concurrent injury was common in this group of elite ski racers. Primary ACL tears were typically accompanied by lateral compartment chondral lesions and complex meniscal tears that worsened...... over time. ACL/MCL tears were the most common multiligament injury pattern.......BACKGROUND: Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear is the most frequent injury in alpine ski racing, and there is a high prevalence of ACL reinjury. Limited data exist on the concurrent pathology with primary ACL tears in elite alpine ski racers and the magnitude of injury progression after primary...

  11. Transient thermal effects in Alpine permafrost

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Noetzli

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available In high mountain areas, permafrost is important because it influences the occurrence of natural hazards, because it has to be considered in construction practices, and because it is sensitive to climate change. The assessment of its distribution and evolution is challenging because of highly variable conditions at and below the surface, steep topography and varying climatic conditions. This paper presents a systematic investigation of effects of topography and climate variability that are important for subsurface temperatures in Alpine bedrock permafrost. We studied the effects of both, past and projected future ground surface temperature variations on the basis of numerical experimentation with simplified mountain topography in order to demonstrate the principal effects. The modeling approach applied combines a distributed surface energy balance model and a three-dimensional subsurface heat conduction scheme. Results show that the past climate variations that essentially influence present-day permafrost temperatures at depth of the idealized mountains are the last glacial period and the major fluctuations in the past millennium. Transient effects from projected future warming, however, are likely larger than those from past climate conditions because larger temperature changes at the surface occur in shorter time periods. We further demonstrate the accelerating influence of multi-lateral warming in steep and complex topography for a temperature signal entering the subsurface as compared to the situation in flat areas. The effects of varying and uncertain material properties (i.e., thermal properties, porosity, and freezing characteristics on the subsurface temperature field were examined in sensitivity studies. A considerable influence of latent heat due to water in low-porosity bedrock was only shown for simulations over time periods of decades to centuries. At the end, the model was applied to the topographic setting of the Matterhorn

  12. The role of solar UV radiation in the ecology of alpine lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sommaruga, R

    2001-09-01

    Solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR, 290-400 nm) is a crucial environmental factor in alpine lakes because of the natural increase of the UVR flux with elevation and the high water transparency of these ecosystems. The ecological importance of UVR, however, has only recently been recognized. This review, examines the general features of alpine lakes regarding UVR, summarizes what is known about the role of solar UVR in the ecology of alpine lakes, and identifies future research directions. Unlike the pattern observed in most lowland lakes, variability of UV attenuation in alpine lakes is poorly explained by differences in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations, and depends mainly on optical characteristics (absorption) of the chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM). Within the water column of lakes with low DOC concentrations (0.2-0.4 mg l(-1)), UV attenuation is influenced by phytoplankton whose development at depth (i.e. the deep chlorophyll maximum) causes important changes in UV attenuation. Alpine aquatic organisms have developed a number of strategies to minimize UV damage. The widespread synthesis or bioaccumulation of different compounds that directly or indirectly absorb UV energy is one such strategy. Although most benthic and planktonic primary producers and crustacean zooplankton are well adapted to high intensities of solar radiation, heterotrophic protists, bacteria, and viruses seem to be particularly sensitive to UVR. Understanding the overall impact of UVR on alpine lakes would need to consider synergistic and antagonistic processes resulting from the pronounced climatic warming, which have the potential to modify the UV underwater climate and consequently the stress on aquatic organisms.

  13. The AlpArray Seismic Network: A Large-Scale European Experiment to Image the Alpine Orogen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hetényi, György; Molinari, Irene; Clinton, John; Bokelmann, Götz; Bondár, István; Crawford, Wayne C.; Dessa, Jean-Xavier; Doubre, Cécile; Friederich, Wolfgang; Fuchs, Florian; Giardini, Domenico; Gráczer, Zoltán; Handy, Mark R.; Herak, Marijan; Jia, Yan; Kissling, Edi; Kopp, Heidrun; Korn, Michael; Margheriti, Lucia; Meier, Thomas; Mucciarelli, Marco; Paul, Anne; Pesaresi, Damiano; Piromallo, Claudia; Plenefisch, Thomas; Plomerová, Jaroslava; Ritter, Joachim; Rümpker, Georg; Šipka, Vesna; Spallarossa, Daniele; Thomas, Christine; Tilmann, Frederik; Wassermann, Joachim; Weber, Michael; Wéber, Zoltán; Wesztergom, Viktor; Živčić, Mladen

    2018-04-01

    The AlpArray programme is a multinational, European consortium to advance our understanding of orogenesis and its relationship to mantle dynamics, plate reorganizations, surface processes and seismic hazard in the Alps-Apennines-Carpathians-Dinarides orogenic system. The AlpArray Seismic Network has been deployed with contributions from 36 institutions from 11 countries to map physical properties of the lithosphere and asthenosphere in 3D and thus to obtain new, high-resolution geophysical images of structures from the surface down to the base of the mantle transition zone. With over 600 broadband stations operated for 2 years, this seismic experiment is one of the largest simultaneously operated seismological networks in the academic domain, employing hexagonal coverage with station spacing at less than 52 km. This dense and regularly spaced experiment is made possible by the coordinated coeval deployment of temporary stations from numerous national pools, including ocean-bottom seismometers, which were funded by different national agencies. They combine with permanent networks, which also required the cooperation of many different operators. Together these stations ultimately fill coverage gaps. Following a short overview of previous large-scale seismological experiments in the Alpine region, we here present the goals, construction, deployment, characteristics and data management of the AlpArray Seismic Network, which will provide data that is expected to be unprecedented in quality to image the complex Alpine mountains at depth.

  14. Influence of climate and regeneration microsites on Pinus contorta invasion into an alpine ecosystem in New Zealand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie A. Harsch

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available In many regions, alien conifers have spread widely at lower elevations and are increasingly found colonizing alpine areas. Although studies have addressed conifer invasions at low elevations, little is known about the rates and constraints on spread into higher elevations. Here, we assess the relative importance of climate and the availability of regeneration microsites on the establishment of the alien species Pinus contorta into a high elevation site in New Zealand. Spread has occurred from two stands planted at the elevation of the native treeline (1347–1388 masl in the 1960s. Most stems established between 1350 and 1450 masl and P. contorta individuals were found up to 270 m above the original plantings. Although the population has increased by 180% in the last 20 years, population growth rate has been declining. Furthermore, comparisons with studies from other mountain ranges around the world and at low elevations in New Zealand suggest this is a relatively limited spread. Our results suggest that climate variation did not have a significant effect on establishment patterns, as opposed to availability of regeneration microsites. Soil and alpine mat microsites favoured establishment of P. contorta and, although these microsites did not appear to be saturated, microsite availability may be an important limiting factor for the spread of P. contorta. Thus management strategies should focus on preventing spread in addition to removing already established stems.

  15. The relative role of dispersal and local interactions for alpine plant community diversity under simulated climate warming

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klanderud, K.; Totland, Oe. [Norwegian Univ. of Life Science, Dept. of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Aas (Norway)

    2007-08-15

    Most studies on factors determining diversity are conducted in temperate or warm regions, whereas studies in climatically harsh and low productivity areas, such as alpine regions, are rare. We examined the relative roles of seed availability and different biotic and abiotic factors for the diversity of an alpine plant community in southern Norway. Furthermore, because climate warming is predicted to be an important driver of alpine species diversity, we assessed how the relative impacts of dispersal and local interactions on diversity might change under experimental warming (open top chambers, OTCs). Addition of seeds from 27 regional species increased community diversity. The establishment of the species was negatively related both to the diversity of the existing system and the cover of the abundant dwarf shrub Dryas octopetala. These results show that both species dispersal limitation and local biotic interactions are important factors for alpine plant community diversity. Despite relatively harsh environmental conditions and low productivity, competition from the resident vegetation appeared to have a greater role for species establishment and diversity than facilitation and experimental warming. Higher temperature appeared to increase the negative relationship between resident species diversity and species establishment. This may suggest that climate warming can increase the role of interspecific competition for alpine plant community structure, and thus alter the long-term effects of biotic interactions on diversity. (au)

  16. Paleomagnetism and the alpine tectonics of Eurasia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Raven, Th.

    1964-01-01

    The following paper by Gregor and Zijderveld is the first of a series planned to report results of paleomagnetic investigations in the Alpine area from Italy to the Himalayas. These investigations are carried out in close collaboration between the well-equipped paleomagnetic laboratory of

  17. The Alpine loop of the tethys zone

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bemmelen, R.W. van

    The Alpine loop in Europe results from semi-autochthonous crustal movements which are restricted to the mobile Tethys zone. Its evolution cannot be explained by a uniform northward drift and push of the African continent; it has to be sought, in the first place, in geodynamic processes occurring in

  18. Climate change and alpine stream biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hotaling, Scott; Finn, Debra S.; Joseph Giersch, J.

    2017-01-01

    micro- to macroscopic organisms and genes to communities. Herein, we describe the current state of alpine stream biology from an organism-focused perspective. We begin by reviewing seven standard and emerging approaches that combine to form the current state of the discipline. We follow with a call...

  19. Are low altitude alpine tundra ecosystems under threat? A case study from the Parc National de la Gaspésie, Québec

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dumais, Catherine; Ropars, Pascale; Denis, Marie-Pier; Dufour-Tremblay, Geneviève; Boudreau, Stéphane

    2014-01-01

    According to the 2007 IPCC report, the alpine tundra ecosystems found on low mountains of the northern hemisphere are amongst the most threatened by climate change. A treeline advance or a significant erect shrub expansion could result in increased competition for the arctic-alpine species usually found on mountaintops and eventually lead to their local extinction. The objectives of our study were to identify recent changes in the cover and growth of erect woody vegetation in the alpine tundra of Mont de la Passe, in the Parc National de la Gaspésie (Québec, Canada). The comparison of two orthorectified aerial photos revealed no significant shift of the treeline between 1975 and 2004. During the same period however, shrub species cover increased from 20.2% to 30.4% in the lower alpine zone. Dendrochronological analyses conducted on Betula glandulosa Michx. sampled at three different positions along an altitudinal gradient (low, intermediate and high alpine zone) revealed that the climatic determinants of B. glandulosa radial growth become more complex with increasing altitude. In the lower alpine zone, B. glandulosa radial growth is only significantly associated positively to July temperature. In the intermediate alpine zone, radial growth is associated positively to July temperature but negatively to March temperature. In the high alpine zone, radial growth is positively associated to January, July and August temperature but negatively to March temperature. The positive association between summer temperatures and radial growth suggests that B. glandulosa could potentially benefit from warmer temperatures, a phenomenon that could lead to an increase in its cover over the next few decades. Although alpine tundra vegetation is not threatened in the short-term in the Parc National de la Gaspésie, erect shrub cover, especially B. glandulosa, could likely increase in the near future, threatening the local arctic-alpine flora. (letter)

  20. Inspection of Alpine glaciers with cosmic-ray muon radiography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishiyama, Ryuichi; Ariga, Akitaka; Ariga, Tomoko; Ereditato, Antonio; Lechmann, Alessandro; Mair, David; Scampoli, Paola; Schlunegger, Fritz; Vladymyrov, Mykhailo

    2016-04-01

    Radiography using cosmic-ray muons represents a challenging method for probing the bedrock topography beneath Alpine glaciers. We present the current status of our feasibility study at Eiger glacier, situated on the western flank of the Eiger in the Jungfrau region, Central Swiss Alps. The muon radiography is a technique that has been recently developed to investigate the internal density profiles of geoscientific targets. It is based on the measurement of the absorption of the cosmic-ray muons inside a material. Because the energy spectrum of cosmic-ray muons and the energy dependence of muon range have been studied well during the past years, the attenuation of the muon flux can be used to derive the column density, i.e. the density integrated along the muon trajectories, of geoscientific targets. This technique has recently been applied for non-invasive inspection of volcanoes, nuclear reactors, seismic faults, caves and etc. The greatest advantage of the method in the field of glacier studies is that it yields a unique solution of the density underneath a glacier without any assumption of physical properties inside the target. Large density contrasts, as expected between glacier ice (˜ 1.0g/cm3) and bedrock (˜ 2.5g/cm3), would allow us to elucidate the shape of the bedrock in high resolution. Accordingly, this technology will provide for the first time information on the bedrock surface beneath a steep and non-accessible Alpine glacier, in a complementary way with respect to other exploration methods (drilling, ground penetrating radar, seismic survey, gravity explorations and etc.). Our first aim is to demonstrate the feasibility of the method through a case study at the Eiger glacier, situated in the Central Swiss Alps. The Eiger glacier straddles the western flank of the Eiger between 3700 and 2300 m above sea level (a.s.l.). The glacier has shortened by about 150 m during the past 30 years in response to the ongoing global warming, causing a concern for

  1. In Review (Geology): Alpine Landscape Evolution Dominated by Cirque Retreat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oskin, Michael; Burbank, Doug

    2005-01-01

    Despite the abundance in alpine terrain of glacially dissected landscapes, the magnitude and geometry of glacial erosion can rarely be defined. In the eastern Kyrgyz Range, a widespread unconformity exhumed as a geomorphic surface provides a regional datum with which to calibrate erosion. As tectonically driven surface uplift has progressively pushed this surface into the zone of ice accumulation, glacial erosion has overprinted the landscape. With as little as 500 m of incision into rocks underlying the unconformity, distinctive glacial valleys display their deepest incision adjacent to cirque headwalls. The expansion of north-facing glacial cirques at the expense of south-facing valleys has driven the drainage divide southwards at rates up to 2 to 3 times the rate of valley incision. Existing ice-flux-based glacial erosion rules incompletely model expansion of glacial valleys via cirque retreat into the low-gradient unconformity remnants. Local processes that either directly sap cirque headwalls or inhibit erosion down-glacier appear to control, at least initially, alpine landscape evolution.

  2. Comparative seed germination traits in alpine and subalpine grasslands: higher elevations are associated with warmer germination temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Pascual, E; Jiménez-Alfaro, B; Bueno, Á

    2017-01-01

    Seed germination traits in alpine grasslands are poorly understood, despite the sensitivity of these communities to climate change. We hypothesise that germination traits predict species occurrence along the alpine-subalpine elevation gradient. Phylogenetic comparative analyses were performed using fresh seeds of 22 species from alpine and subalpine grasslands (1600-2400 m) of the Cantabrian Mountains, Spain (43° N, 5° W). Laboratory experiments were conducted to characterise germinability, optimum germination temperature and effect of cold and warm stratification on dormancy breaking. Variability in these traits was reduced by phylogenetic principal component analysis (phyl.PCA). Phylogenetic generalised least squares regression (PGLS) was used to fit a model in which species average elevation was predicted from their position on the PCA axes. Most subalpine species germinated in snow-like conditions, whereas most alpine species needed accumulation of warm temperatures. Phylogenetic signal was low. PCA1 ordered species according to overall germinability, whilst PCA2 ordered them according to preference for warm or cold germination. PCA2 significantly predicted species occurrence in the alpine-subalpine gradient, as higher elevation species tended to have warmer germination preferences. Our results show that germination traits in high-mountain grasslands are closely linked to the alpine-subalpine gradient. Alpine species, especially those from stripped and wind-edge communities, prefer warmer germination niches, suggesting that summer emergence prevents frost damage during seedling establishment. In contrast, alpine snowfield and subalpine grassland plants have cold germination niches, indicating that winter emergence may occur under snow to avoid drought stress. © 2016 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  3. Seasonal variations in carbon dioxide exchange in an alpine wetland meadow on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Zhao

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Alpine wetland meadow could functions as a carbon sink due to it high soil organic content and low decomposition. However, the magnitude and dynamics of carbon stock in alpine wetland ecosystems are not well quantified. Therefore, understanding how environmental variables affect the processes that regulate carbon fluxes in alpine wetland meadow on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau is critical. To address this issue, Gross Primary Production (GPP, Ecosystem Respiration (Reco, and Net Ecosystem Exchange (NEE were examined in an alpine wetland meadow using the eddy covariance method from October 2003 to December 2006 at the Haibei Research Station of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Seasonal patterns of GPP and Reco were closely associated with leaf area index (LAI. The Reco showed a positive exponential to soil temperature and relatively low Reco occurred during the non-growing season after a rain event. This result is inconsistent with the result observed in alpine shrubland meadow. In total, annual GPP were estimated at 575.7, 682.9, and 630.97 g C m−2 in 2004, 2005, and 2006, respectively. Meanwhile, the Reco were equal to 676.8, 726.4, 808.2 g C m−2, and thus the NEE were 101.1, 44.0 and 173.2 g C m−2. These results indicated that the alpine wetland meadow was a moderately source of carbon dioxide (CO2. The observed carbon dioxide fluxes in the alpine wetland meadow were higher than other alpine meadow such as Kobresia humilis meadow and shrubland meadow.

  4. Participative Spatial Scenario Analysis for Alpine Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Marina; Stotten, Rike; Steinbacher, Melanie; Leitinger, Georg; Tasser, Erich; Schirpke, Uta; Tappeiner, Ulrike; Schermer, Markus

    2017-10-01

    Land use and land cover patterns are shaped by the interplay of human and ecological processes. Thus, heterogeneous cultural landscapes have developed, delivering multiple ecosystem services. To guarantee human well-being, the development of land use types has to be evaluated. Scenario development and land use and land cover change models are well-known tools for assessing future landscape changes. However, as social and ecological systems are inextricably linked, land use-related management decisions are difficult to identify. The concept of social-ecological resilience can thereby provide a framework for understanding complex interlinkages on multiple scales and from different disciplines. In our study site (Stubai Valley, Tyrol/Austria), we applied a sequence of steps including the characterization of the social-ecological system and identification of key drivers that influence farmers' management decisions. We then developed three scenarios, i.e., "trend", "positive" and "negative" future development of farming conditions and assessed respective future land use changes. Results indicate that within the "trend" and "positive" scenarios pluri-activity (various sources of income) prevents considerable changes in land use and land cover and promotes the resilience of farming systems. Contrarily, reductions in subsidies and changes in consumer behavior are the most important key drivers in the negative scenario and lead to distinct abandonment of grassland, predominantly in the sub-alpine zone of our study site. Our conceptual approach, i.e., the combination of social and ecological methods and the integration of local stakeholders' knowledge into spatial scenario analysis, resulted in highly detailed and spatially explicit results that can provide a basis for further community development recommendations.

  5. Facilitation among plants in alpine environments in the face of climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabien eAnthelme

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available While there is a large consensus that plant–plant interactions are a crucial component of the response of plant communities to the effects of climate change, available data remain scarce, particularly in alpine systems. This represents an important obstacle to making consistent predictions about the future of plant communities. Here, we review current knowledge on the effects of climate change on facilitation among alpine plant communities and propose directions for future research. In established alpine communities, while warming seemingly generates a net facilitation release, earlier snowmelt may increase facilitation. Some nurse plants are able to buffer microenvironmental changes in the long term and may ensure the persistence of other alpine plants through local migration events. For communities migrating to higher elevations, facilitation should play an important role in their reorganization because of the harsher environmental conditions. In particular, the absence of efficient nurse plants might slow down upward migration, possibly generating chains of extinction. Facilitation–climate change relationships are expected to shift along latitudinal gradients because (1 the magnitude of warming is predicted to vary along these gradients, and (2 alpine environments are significantly different at low vs. high latitudes. Data on these expected patterns are preliminary and thus need to be tested with further studies on facilitation among plants in alpine environments that have thus far not been considered. From a methodological standpoint, future studies will benefit from the spatial representation of the microclimatic environment of plants to predict their response to climate change. Moreover, the acquisition of long-term data on the dynamics of plant–plant interactions, either through permanent plots or chronosequences of glacial recession, may represent powerful approaches to clarify the relationship between plant interactions and

  6. Facilitation among plants in alpine environments in the face of climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anthelme, Fabien; Cavieres, Lohengrin A; Dangles, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    While there is a large consensus that plant-plant interactions are a crucial component of the response of plant communities to the effects of climate change, available data remain scarce, particularly in alpine systems. This represents an important obstacle to making consistent predictions about the future of plant communities. Here, we review current knowledge on the effects of climate change on facilitation among alpine plant communities and propose directions for future research. In established alpine communities, while warming seemingly generates a net facilitation release, earlier snowmelt may increase facilitation. Some nurse plants are able to buffer microenvironmental changes in the long term and may ensure the persistence of other alpine plants through local migration events. For communities migrating to higher elevations, facilitation should play an important role in their reorganization because of the harsher environmental conditions. In particular, the absence of efficient nurse plants might slow down upward migration, possibly generating chains of extinction. Facilitation-climate change relationships are expected to shift along latitudinal gradients because (1) the magnitude of warming is predicted to vary along these gradients, and (2) alpine environments are significantly different at low vs. high latitudes. Data on these expected patterns are preliminary and thus need to be tested with further studies on facilitation among plants in alpine environments that have thus far not been considered. From a methodological standpoint, future studies will benefit from the spatial representation of the microclimatic environment of plants to predict their response to climate change. Moreover, the acquisition of long-term data on the dynamics of plant-plant interactions, either through permanent plots or chronosequences of glacial recession, may represent powerful approaches to clarify the relationship between plant interactions and climate change.

  7. Anterior cruciate ligament injury/reinjury in alpine ski racing: a narrative review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, Matthew J; Aagaard, Per; Herzog, Walter

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of the present review was to: 1) provide an overview of the current understanding on the epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and prevention methods for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in alpine ski racing; and 2) provide an overview of what is known pertaining to ACL reinjury and return to sport after ACL injury in alpine ski racing. Given that most of the scientific studies on ACL injuries in alpine ski racing have been descriptive, and that very few studies contributed higher level scientific evidence, a nonsystematic narrative review was employed. Three scholarly databases were searched for articles on ACL injury or knee injury in alpine ski racing. Studies were classified according to their relevance in relation to epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and return to sport/reinjury prevention. Alpine ski racers (skiers) were found to be at high risk for knee injuries, and ACL tears were the most frequent diagnosis. Three primary ACL injury mechanism were identified that involved tibial internal rotation and anteriorly directed shear forces from ski equipment and the environment. While trunk muscle strength imbalance and genetics were found to be predictive of ACL injuries in development-level skiers, there was limited scientific data on ACL injury risk factors among elite skiers. Based on expert opinion, research on injury risk factors should focus on equipment design, course settings/speed, and athlete factors (eg, fitness). While skiers seem to make a successful recovery following ACL injury, there may be persistent neuromuscular deficits. Future research efforts should be directed toward prospective studies on ACL injury/reinjury prevention in both male and female skiers and toward the effects of knee injury on long-term health outcomes, such as the early development of osteoarthritis. International collaborations may be necessary to generate sufficient statistical power for ACL injury/reinjury prevention research in alpine ski racing

  8. Seasonal variations of the high-latitude F region for

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sojka, J.J.; Schunk, R.W.; Raitt, W.J.

    1982-01-01

    We combined a plasma convection model with an inosphere-atmospheric composition model in order to study the seasonal variations of the high-latitude F region for strong convection. Our numerical study produced time-dependent, three-dimensional, ion density distributions for the ions NO + , O 2 + , N 2 + , O + , N + , and He + . We covered the high-latitude ionosphere above 42 0 N magnetic latitude and at altitudes between 160 and 800 km for a time period of one complete day. From our study we found the following: (1) For strong convection, the high-altitude ionosphere exhibits a significant UT variation both during winter and summer. (2) In general, the electron density is lower in winter than in summer. However, at certain universal times the electron density in the dayside polar cap is larger in winter than in summer owing to the effect of the mid-latitude 'winter anomaly' in combination with strong antisunward convection. (3) In both summer and winter, the major region of low electron density is associated with the main or mid-latitudde trough. The trough is deeper and its local time extend is much greater in winter than in summer. (4) Typically, the electron density exhibits a much larger variation with altitude in winter than in summer. (5) The ion composition and molecular/atomic ion transition altitude are highly UT dependent in both summer and winter. (6) The ion composition also displays a significant seasonal variation. However, at a given location the seasonal variation can be opposite at different universal times. (7) High-speed convection cells should display a marked seasonal variation, with a much larger concentration of molecular ions near the F region peak in summer than in winter

  9. Water and CO2 fluxes over semiarid alpine steppe and humid alpine meadow ecosystems on the Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lei; Liu, Huizhi; Shao, Yaping; Liu, Yang; Sun, Jihua

    2018-01-01

    Based on eddy covariance flux data from July 15, 2014, to December 31, 2015, the water and CO2 fluxes were compared over a semiarid alpine steppe (Bange, Tibetan Plateau) and a humid alpine meadow (Lijiang, Yunnan) on the Tibetan Plateau and its surrounding region. During the wet season, the evaporative fraction (EF) was strongly and linearly correlated with the soil water content (SWC) at Bange because of its sparse green grass cover. In contrast, the correlation between the EF at Lijiang and the SWC and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) was very low because the atmosphere was close to saturation and the EF was relatively constant. In the dry season, the EF at both sites decreased with the SWC. The net ecosystem exchange (NEE) at Bange was largely depressed at noon, while this phenomenon did not occur at Lijiang. The saturated NEE at Bange was 24% of that at Lijiang. The temperature sensitivity coefficient of ecosystem respiration at Bange (1.7) was also much lower than that at Lijiang (3.4). The annual total NEE in 2015 was 21.8 and -230.0 g C m-2 yr-1 at Bange and Lijiang, respectively, and the NEE was tightly controlled by the NDVI at the two sites. The distinct differences in the water and CO2 fluxes at Bange and Lijiang are attributed to the large SWC difference and its effect on vegetation growth.

  10. Soil respiration in Tibetan alpine grasslands: belowground biomass and soil moisture, but not soil temperature, best explain the large-scale patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Geng

    Full Text Available The Tibetan Plateau is an essential area to study the potential feedback effects of soils to climate change due to the rapid rise in its air temperature in the past several decades and the large amounts of soil organic carbon (SOC stocks, particularly in the permafrost. Yet it is one of the most under-investigated regions in soil respiration (Rs studies. Here, Rs rates were measured at 42 sites in alpine grasslands (including alpine steppes and meadows along a transect across the Tibetan Plateau during the peak growing season of 2006 and 2007 in order to test whether: (1 belowground biomass (BGB is most closely related to spatial variation in Rs due to high root biomass density, and (2 soil temperature significantly influences spatial pattern of Rs owing to metabolic limitation from the low temperature in cold, high-altitude ecosystems. The average daily mean Rs of the alpine grasslands at peak growing season was 3.92 µmol CO(2 m(-2 s(-1, ranging from 0.39 to 12.88 µmol CO(2 m(-2 s(-1, with average daily mean Rs of 2.01 and 5.49 µmol CO(2 m(-2 s(-1 for steppes and meadows, respectively. By regression tree analysis, BGB, aboveground biomass (AGB, SOC, soil moisture (SM, and vegetation type were selected out of 15 variables examined, as the factors influencing large-scale variation in Rs. With a structural equation modelling approach, we found only BGB and SM had direct effects on Rs, while other factors indirectly affecting Rs through BGB or SM. Most (80% of the variation in Rs could be attributed to the difference in BGB among sites. BGB and SM together accounted for the majority (82% of spatial patterns of Rs. Our results only support the first hypothesis, suggesting that models incorporating BGB and SM can improve Rs estimation at regional scale.

  11. Lack of sex-biased dispersal promotes fine-scale genetic structure in alpine ungulates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gretchen H. Roffler; Sandra L. Talbot; Gordon Luikart; George K. Sage; Kristy L. Pilgrim; Layne G. Adams; Michael K. Schwartz

    2014-01-01

    Identifying patterns of fine-scale genetic structure in natural populations can advance understanding of critical ecological processes such as dispersal and gene flow across heterogeneous landscapes. Alpine ungulates generally exhibit high levels of genetic structure due to female philopatry and patchy configuration of mountain habitats. We assessed the spatial scale...

  12. Geochemistry and petrography of the MacAlpine Hills lunar meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn M.; Mckay, David S.; Wentworth, Susan J.; Martinez, Rene R.; Mittlefehldt, David W.; Wang, Ming-Sheng; Lipschutz, Michael E.

    1991-01-01

    MacAlpine Hills 88104 and 88105, anorthositic lunar meteorites recovered form the same area in Antartica, are characterized. Petrographic studies show that MAC88104/5 is a polymict breccia dominated by impact melt clasts. It is better classified as a fragmental breccia than a regolith breccia. The bulk composition is ferroan and highly aluminous (Al2O3-28 percent).

  13. Continuous recording of seismic signals in Alpine permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausmann, H.; Krainer, K.; Staudinger, M.; Brückl, E.

    2009-04-01

    Over the past years various geophysical methods were applied to study the internal structure and the temporal variation of permafrost whereof seismic is of importance. For most seismic investigations in Alpine permafrost 24-channel equipment in combination with long data and trigger cables is used. Due to the harsh environment source and geophone layouts are often limited to 2D profiles. With prospect for future 3D-layouts we introduce an alternative of seismic equipment that can be used for several applications in Alpine permafrost. This study is focussed on controlled and natural source seismic experiments in Alpine permafrost using continuous data recording. With recent data from an ongoing project ("Permafrost in Austria") we will highlight the potential of the used seismic equipment for three applications: (a) seismic permafrost mapping of unconsolidated sediments, (b) seismic tomography in rock mass, and (c) passive seismic monitoring of rock falls. Single recording units (REFTEK 130, 6 channels) are used to continuously record the waveforms of both the seismic signals and a trigger signal. The combination of a small number of recording units with different types of geophones or a trigger allow numerous applications in Alpine permafrost with regard to a high efficiency and flexible seismic layouts (2D, 3D, 4D). The efficiency of the light and robust seismic equipment is achieved by the simple acquisition and the flexible and fast deployment of the (omni-directional) geophones. Further advantages are short (data and trigger) cables and the prevention of trigger errors. The processing of the data is aided by 'Seismon' which is an open source software project based on Matlab® and MySQL (see SM1.0). For active-source experiments automatic stacking of the seismic signals is implemented. For passive data a program for automatic detection of events (e.g. rock falls) is available which allows event localization. In summer 2008 the seismic equipment was used for the

  14. Molecular phylogeography of the Andean alpine plant, Gunnera magellanica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimizu, M.; Fujii, N.; Ito, M.; Asakawa, T.; Nishida, H.; Suyama, C.; Ueda, K.

    2015-12-01

    To clarify the evolutionary history of Gunnera magellanica (Gunneraceae), an alpine plant of the Andes mountains, we performed molecular phylogeographic analyses based on the sequences of an internal transcribed spacer (ITS) of nuclear ribosomal DNA and four non-coding regions (trnH-psbA, trnL-trnF, atpB-rbcL, rpl16 intron) of chloroplast DNA. We investigated 3, 4, 4 and 11 populations in, Ecuador, Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile, respectively, and detected six ITS genotypes (Types A-F) in G. magellanica. Five genotypes (Types A-E) were observed in the northern Andes population (Ecuador and Bolivia); only one ITS genotype (Type F) was observed in the southern Andes population (Chile and Argentina). Phylogenetic analyses showed that the ITS genotypes of the northern and southern Andes populations form different clades with high bootstrap probability. Furthermore, network analysis, analysis of molecular variance, and spatial analysis of molecular variance showed that there were two major clusters (the northern and southern Andes populations) in this species. Furthermore, in chloroplast DNA analysis, three major clades (northern Andes, Chillan, and southern Andes) were inferred from phylogenetic analyses using four non-coding regions, a finding that was supported by the above three types of analysis. The Chillan clade is the northernmost population in the southern Andes populations. With the exception of the Chillan clade (Chillan population), results of nuclear DNA and chloroplast DNA analyses were consistent. Both markers showed that the northern and southern Andes populations of G. magellanica were genetically different from each other. This type of clear phylogeographical structure was supported by PERMUT analysis according to Pons & Petit (1995, 1996). Moreover, based on our preliminary estimation that is based on the ITS sequences, the northern and southern Andes clades diverged ~0.63-3 million years ago, during a period of upheaval in the Andes. This suggests

  15. Growth responses of low-alpine dwarf-shrub heath species to nitrogen deposition and management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Britton, Andrea J.; Fisher, Julia M.

    2008-01-01

    Nitrogen deposition is a continuing problem in European alpine regions. We hypothesised that, despite climatic limitations, low-alpine Calluna heathland would respond to nitrogen addition with increased shoot growth and flowering and that fire and grazing would modify responses. In a five-year study, 0-50 kg N ha -1 y -1 were added, combined with burning (+/-) and clipping (+/-). Calluna vulgaris responded with increased shoot extension, but effects on flowering were variable. Burning enhanced the positive effect of nitrogen addition and negative effects of clipping. Sub-dominant shrubs generally did not respond to nitrogen. C. vulgaris shoot extension was stimulated by nitrogen addition of 10 kg N ha -1 y -1 (above background) supporting suggestions that alpine heathlands are sensitive to low levels of nitrogen deposition. Increased C. vulgaris growth could negatively impact on important lichen components of this vegetation through increased shading and competition. Climatic factors constrain productivity in this community, but do not prevent rapid responses to nitrogen deposition by some species. - Low levels of N deposition increase productivity in alpine dwarf-shrub heath despite strong climatic constraints

  16. Recent crustal movements and geophysical interpretation of geodynamic processes in the Alpine mountain belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gubler, E.; Kahle, H. G.

    It is a well-known fact that the surface phenomena of global plate tectonics are most convincingly seen and felt along the boundaries of the moving lithospheric plates. These boundaries are morphologically expressed as mild-ocean ridges or as subduction zones such as deep sea trenches or Himalayan/Alpine fold belts, the latter of which are the subject of this paper. On a global scale, there are kinematic models giving an idea of what kind of rates can be expected. This is due to the fact that magnetic sea floor spreading anomalies are missing in the Alpine environment. On the other hand, the structure and kinematics of the Apulian microplate are of major interest to Switzerland because its northern boundary seems to be formed by the Alpine chain. In Switzerland there are some 14 special study groups actively working in this field of geodynamics. This paper is restricted to the geodetic and gravity studies. With emphasis on the assumed northern boundary of the Apulian microplate, the kinematics of relative plate movements in the Alpine area were investigated. A simplified tectonic map of this region is shown.

  17. Les Nouvelles Traversées Alpines : la “cité-Europe” à l’épreuve de l’acceptabilité alpine ? The New alpine crossings : The “city-Europe” faces up to the alpine acceptability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin Sutton

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available La pensée des traversées alpines est indissociable de celle des réseaux urbains alpins et, au-delà, européens. La nouvelle phase de percée des tunnels de base le réaffirme : les “Nouvelles Traversées Alpines” se retrouvent au coeur de l’enjeu de connexion des réseaux ferroviaires européens à grande vitesse. L’invention de la “cité-Europe” passe ainsi par la réinvention d’un pacte alpin autour du dessein de franchissement entre les villes de piedmonts et les communautés montagnardes traversées. Ces dernières ont, en effet, la capacité de bloquer un projet par leur refus. L’exemple du projet Lyon-Turin l’illustre, en contre-point de la réussite du tunnel de base du Lötschberg. La réussite suisse semble tenir à la capacité de conjuguer les inventions technique et sociale du tunnel, ne niant pas la dimension territoriale de cet objet réticulaire.It is impossible to think about the alpine crossings without thinking about the alpine and European urban nets. The construction of the basis tunnels recalls it: the “New Alpine Crossings” are the kernel of the connection issue between the European high-speed railways nets. The invention of a “city-Europe” needs a reinvented pact, between the cities of the plains and the alpine communities, based on the reaffirmation of a common crossing destiny. The alpine communities can thwart the project by refusing it, as the example of the Lyon-Turin project shows, in contrast to the successful Lötschberg basis tunnel. The Swiss success seems to come from the capacity to mix technical and social inventions, replacing the territorial dimension in the reticular fundament.

  18. Hydrologic and Isotopic Sensitivity of Alpine Lakes to Climate Change in the Medicine Bow Mountains, Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liefert, D. T.; Shuman, B. N.; Mercer, J.; Parsekian, A.; Williams, D. G.

    2017-12-01

    Climate reconstructions show that global average temperatures were 0.5°C higher than today during the mid-Holocene, falling well within projections for increases in global average temperature presented in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report. Despite the consensus for the prediction of a warmer climate, however, it is unclear how snowmelt from high-elevation watersheds will be affected by such a change. Snowmelt contributes substantially to major rivers in the western United States, and much of the water flows through lakes in the highest-elevation watersheds. Our water balance models show that modern alpine lakes with seasonably unstable water levels can desiccate primarily through groundwater outflow, resulting in increased groundwater storage that likely sustains baseflow in mountain streams once snowmelt has subsided in late summer. However, contribution of freshwater from alpine lakes to streams may vary over time as changes in climate alters snowpack, rates of evaporation, and the abundance of snowmelt-fed lakes. As such, alpine lakes with seasonally unstable water levels today may have dried out entirely during the mid-Holocene warm period and may dry out in the future as temperatures increase. To investigate the response of alpine lakes to temperatures of the mid-Holocene, we collected 9 sediment cores from closed-basin alpine lakes in the Medicine Bow Mountains of southern Wyoming that lose most their volumes each summer. We use radiocarbon-dating of charcoal in basal sediments to determine lake formation age, abundance of conifer needles to infer relative forest cover, and a δ18O carbonate record to determine changes in the ratio of evaporation to precipitation in an alpine lake that existed throughout the Holocene. Warming likely changed watershed hydrology through a) decreased snowpack and earlier snowmelt, b) increased evaporation, and c) increased transpiration associated with expanded forest cover and longer growing seasons

  19. A high-resolution regional reanalysis for the European CORDEX region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bollmeyer, Christoph; Keller, Jan; Ohlwein, Christian; Wahl, Sabrina

    2015-04-01

    Within the Hans-Ertel-Centre for Weather Research (HErZ), the climate monitoring branch concentrates efforts on the assessment and analysis of regional climate in Germany and Europe. In joint cooperation with DWD (German Weather Service), a high-resolution reanalysis system based on the COSMO model has been developed. Reanalyses gain more and more importance as a source of meteorological information for many purposes and applications. Several global reanalyses projects (e.g., ERA, MERRA, CSFR, JMA9) produce and verify these data sets to provide time series as long as possible combined with a high data quality. Due to a spatial resolution down to 50-70km and 3-hourly temporal output, they are not suitable for small scale problems (e.g., regional climate assessment, meso-scale NWP verification, input for subsequent models such as river runoff simulations, renewable energy applications). The implementation of regional reanalyses based on a limited area model along with a data assimilation scheme is able to generate reanalysis data sets with high spatio-temporal resolution. The work presented here focuses on two regional reanalyses for Europe and Germany. The European reanalysis COSMO-REA6 matches the CORDEX EURO-11 specifications, albeit at a higher spatial resolution, i.e., 0.055° (6km) instead of 0.11° (12km). Nested into COSMO-REA6 is COSMO-REA2, a convective-scale reanalysis with 2km resolution for Germany. COSMO-REA6 comprises the assimilation of observational data using the existing nudging scheme of COSMO and is complemented by a special soil moisture analysis and boundary conditions given by ERA-Interim data. COSMO-REA2 also uses the nudging scheme complemented by a latent heat nudging of radar information. The reanalysis data set currently covers 17 years (1997-2013) for COSMO-REA6 and 4 years (2010-2013) for COSMO-REA2 with a very large set of output variables and a high temporal output step of hourly 3D-fields and quarter-hourly 2D-fields. The evaluation

  20. Alien roadside species more easily invade alpine than lowland plant communities in a subarctic mountain ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonas J Lembrechts

    Full Text Available Effects of roads on plant communities are not well known in cold-climate mountain ecosystems, where road building and development are expected to increase in future decades. Knowledge of the sensitivity of mountain plant communities to disturbance by roads is however important for future conservation purposes. We investigate the effects of roads on species richness and composition, including the plant strategies that are most affected, along three elevational gradients in a subarctic mountain ecosystem. We also examine whether mountain roads promote the introduction and invasion of alien plant species from the lowlands to the alpine zone. Observations of plant community composition were made together with abiotic, biotic and anthropogenic factors in 60 T-shaped transects. Alpine plant communities reacted differently to road disturbances than their lowland counterparts. On high elevations, the roadside species composition was more similar to that of the local natural communities. Less competitive and ruderal species were present at high compared with lower elevation roadsides. While the effects of roads thus seem to be mitigated in the alpine environment for plant species in general, mountain plant communities are more invasible than lowland communities. More precisely, relatively more alien species present in the roadside were found to invade into the surrounding natural community at high compared to low elevations. We conclude that effects of roads and introduction of alien species in lowlands cannot simply be extrapolated to the alpine and subarctic environment.

  1. Alien roadside species more easily invade alpine than lowland plant communities in a subarctic mountain ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lembrechts, Jonas J; Milbau, Ann; Nijs, Ivan

    2014-01-01

    Effects of roads on plant communities are not well known in cold-climate mountain ecosystems, where road building and development are expected to increase in future decades. Knowledge of the sensitivity of mountain plant communities to disturbance by roads is however important for future conservation purposes. We investigate the effects of roads on species richness and composition, including the plant strategies that are most affected, along three elevational gradients in a subarctic mountain ecosystem. We also examine whether mountain roads promote the introduction and invasion of alien plant species from the lowlands to the alpine zone. Observations of plant community composition were made together with abiotic, biotic and anthropogenic factors in 60 T-shaped transects. Alpine plant communities reacted differently to road disturbances than their lowland counterparts. On high elevations, the roadside species composition was more similar to that of the local natural communities. Less competitive and ruderal species were present at high compared with lower elevation roadsides. While the effects of roads thus seem to be mitigated in the alpine environment for plant species in general, mountain plant communities are more invasible than lowland communities. More precisely, relatively more alien species present in the roadside were found to invade into the surrounding natural community at high compared to low elevations. We conclude that effects of roads and introduction of alien species in lowlands cannot simply be extrapolated to the alpine and subarctic environment.

  2. The ATLAS high level trigger region of interest builder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blair, R.; Dawson, J.; Drake, G.; Haberichter, W.; Schlereth, J.; Zhang, J.; Ermoline, Y.; Pope, B.; Aboline, M.; High Energy Physics; Michigan State Univ.

    2008-01-01

    This article describes the design, testing and production of the ATLAS Region of Interest Builder (RoIB). This device acts as an interface between the Level 1 trigger and the high level trigger (HLT) farm for the ATLAS LHC detector. It distributes all of the Level 1 data for a subset of events to a small number of (16 or less) individual commodity processors. These processors in turn provide this information to the HLT. This allows the HLT to use the Level 1 information to narrow data requests to areas of the detector where Level 1 has identified interesting objects

  3. Identification of groundwater nitrate sources in pre-alpine catchments: a multi-tracer approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoewer, Myriam; Stumpp, Christine

    2014-05-01

    Porous aquifers in pre-alpine areas are often used as drinking water resources due to their good water quality status and water yield. Maintaining these resources requires knowledge about possible sources of pollutants and a sustainable management practice in groundwater catchment areas. Of particular interest in agricultural areas, like in pre-alpine regions, is limiting nitrate input as main groundwater pollutant. Therefore, the objective of the presented study is i) to identify main nitrate sources in a pre-alpine groundwater catchment with current low nitrate concentration using stable isotopes of nitrate (d18O and d15N) and ii) to investigate seasonal dynamics of nitrogen compounds. The groundwater catchment areas of four porous aquifers are located in Southern Germany. Most of the land use is organic grassland farming as well as forestry and residential area. Thus, potential sources of nitrate mainly are mineral fertilizer, manure/slurry, leaking sewage system and atmospheric deposition of nitrogen compounds. Monthly freshwater samples (precipitation, river water and groundwater) are analysed for stable isotope of water (d2H, d18O), the concentration of major anions and cations, electrical conductivity, water temperature, pH and oxygen. In addition, isotopic analysis of d18O-NO3- and d15N-NO3- for selected samples is carried out using the denitrifier method. In general, all groundwater samples were oxic (10.0±2.6mg/L) and nitrate concentrations were low (0.2 - 14.6mg/L). The observed nitrate isotope values in the observation area compared to values from local precipitation, sewage, manure and mineral fertilizer as well as to data from literature shows that the nitrate in freshwater samples is of microbial origin. Nitrate derived from ammonium in fertilizers and precipitation as well as from soil nitrogen. It is suggested that a major potential threat to the groundwater quality is ammonia and ammonium at a constant level mainly from agriculture activities as

  4. Project SHARE Sustainable Hydropower in Alpine Rivers Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammoliti Mochet, Andrea

    2010-05-01

    SHARE - Sustainable Hydropower in Alpine Rivers Ecosystems is a running project early approved and co funded by the European regional development fund in the context of the European Territorial Cooperation Alpine Space programme 2007 - 2013: the project is formally ongoing from August 2009 and it will end July 2012. Hydropower is the most important renewable resource for electricity production in alpine areas: it has advantages for the global CO2 balance but creates serious environmental impacts. RES-e Directives require renewable electricity enhance but, at the same time, the Water Framework Directive obliges member States to reach or maintain a water bodies "good" ecological status, intrinsically limiting the hydropower exploitation. Administrators daily face an increasing demand of water abstraction but lack reliable tools to rigorously evaluate their effects on mountain rivers and the social and economical outputs on longer time scale. The project intends to develop, test and promote a decision support system to merge on an unprejudiced base, river ecosystems and hydropower requirements. This approach will be led using existing scientific tools, adjustable to transnational, national and local normative and carried on by permanent panel of administrators and stakeholders. Scientific knowledge related to HP & river management will be "translated" by the communication tools and spent as a concrete added value to build a decision support system. In particular, the Multicriteria Analysis (MCA) will be applied to assess different management alternatives where a single-criterion approach (such as cost-benefit analysis) falls short, especially where environmental, technical, economic and social criteria can't be quantified by monetary values. All the existing monitoring databases will be used and harmonized with new information collected during the Pilot case studies. At the same time, all information collected will be available to end users and actors of related

  5. Estimation of Alpine Skier Posture Using Machine Learning Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bojan Nemec

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available High precision Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS measurements are becoming more and more popular in alpine skiing due to the relatively undemanding setup and excellent performance. However, GNSS provides only single-point measurements that are defined with the antenna placed typically behind the skier’s neck. A key issue is how to estimate other more relevant parameters of the skier’s body, like the center of mass (COM and ski trajectories. Previously, these parameters were estimated by modeling the skier’s body with an inverted-pendulum model that oversimplified the skier’s body. In this study, we propose two machine learning methods that overcome this shortcoming and estimate COM and skis trajectories based on a more faithful approximation of the skier’s body with nine degrees-of-freedom. The first method utilizes a well-established approach of artificial neural networks, while the second method is based on a state-of-the-art statistical generalization method. Both methods were evaluated using the reference measurements obtained on a typical giant slalom course and compared with the inverted-pendulum method. Our results outperform the results of commonly used inverted-pendulum methods and demonstrate the applicability of machine learning techniques in biomechanical measurements of alpine skiing.

  6. Microinstabilities in the high latitude F region: a brief review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gary, S.P.

    1983-01-01

    This is a review of the theory of plasma microinstabilities that may arise in the high latitude F region ionosphere below 1000 km. Three free energy sources are considered: a density gradient perpendicular to the ambient magnetic field B, a current parallel to B and a steady electric field perpendicular to B. The BGK model for charged-neutral collisions is used, and the short wavelength properties of the universal density drift, current convective and E x B gradient drift instabilities are compared. At sufficiently high altitudes and sufficiently steep gradients, the universal instability is the short wavelength mode most likely to grow and, through wave-particle diffusion, to cause relatively steep wavenumber dependences in power spectra

  7. Modelization of highly nonlinear waves in coastal regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouin, Maïté; Ducrozet, Guillaume; Ferrant, Pierre

    2015-04-01

    The proposed work deals with the development of a highly non-linear model for water wave propagation in coastal regions. The accurate modelization of surface gravity waves is of major interest in ocean engineering, especially in the field of marine renewable energy. These marine structures are intended to be settled in coastal regions where the effect of variable bathymetry may be significant on local wave conditions. This study presents a numerical model for the wave propagation with complex bathymetry. It is based on High-Order Spectral (HOS) method, initially limited to the propagation of non-linear wave fields over flat bottom. Such a model has been developed and validated at the LHEEA Lab. (Ecole Centrale Nantes) over the past few years and the current developments will enlarge its application range. This new numerical model will keep the interesting numerical properties of the original pseudo-spectral approach (convergence, efficiency with the use of FFTs, …) and enable the possibility to propagate highly non-linear wave fields over long time and large distance. Different validations will be provided in addition to the presentation of the method. At first, Bragg reflection will be studied with the proposed approach. If the Bragg condition is satisfied, the reflected wave generated by a sinusoidal bottom patch should be amplified as a result of resonant quadratic interactions between incident wave and bottom. Comparisons will be provided with experiments and reference solutions. Then, the method will be used to consider the transformation of a non-linear monochromatic wave as it propagates up and over a submerged bar. As the waves travel up the front slope of the bar, it steepens and high harmonics are generated due to non-linear interactions. Comparisons with experimental data will be provided. The different test cases will assess the accuracy and efficiency of the method proposed.

  8. High beta and second stability region transport and stability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hughes, M.H.; Phillps, M.W.; Todd, A.M.M.; Krishnaswami, J.; Hartley, R.

    1992-09-01

    This report describes ideal and resistive studies of high-beta plasmas and of the second stability region. Emphasis is focused on ''supershot'' plasmas in TFIR where MHD instabilities are frequently observed and which spoil their confinement properties. Substantial results are described from the analysis of these high beta poloidal plasmas. During these studies, initial pressure and safety factor profiles were obtained from the TRANSP code, which is used extensively to analyze experimental data. Resistive MBD stability studies of supershot equilibria show that finite pressure stabilization of tearing modes is very strong in these high βp plasmas. This has prompted a detailed re-examination of linear tearing mode theory in which we participated in collaboration with Columbia University and General Atomics. This finite pressure effect is shown to be highly sensitive to small scale details of the pressure profile. Even when an ad hoc method of removing this stabilizing mechanism is implemented, however, it is shown that there is only superficial agreement between resistive MBD stability computation and the experimental data. While the mode structures observed experimentally can be found computationally, there is no convincing correlation with the experimental observations when the computed results are compared with a large set of supershot data. We also describe both the ideal and resistive stability properties of TFIR equilibria near the transition to the second region. It is shown that the highest β plasmas, although stable to infinite-n ideal ballooning modes, can be unstable to the so called ''infernal'' modes associated with small shear. The sensitivity of these results to the assumed pressure and current density profiles is discussed. Finally, we describe results from two collaborative studies with PPPL. The first involves exploratory studies of the role of the 1/1 mode in tokamaks and, secondly, a study of sawtooth stabilization using ICRF

  9. Phosphate sorption characteristics of European alpine soils

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kaňa, Jiří; Kopáček, Jiří; Camarero, L.; Garcia-Pausas, J.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 75, č. 3 (2011), s. 862-870 ISSN 0361-5995 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA526/09/0567; GA AV ČR(CZ) KJB600960907 Grant - others:EU EMERGE(CZ) EVK1-CT-1999-00032 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60170517 Keywords : phosphate sorption * alpine soil s * acidification Subject RIV: DJ - Water Pollution ; Quality Impact factor: 1.979, year: 2011

  10. Methods for measuring arctic and alpine shrub growth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Myers-Smith, Isla; Hallinger, Martin; Blok, Daan

    2015-01-01

    Shrubs have increased in abundance and dominance in arctic and alpine regions in recent decades. This often dramatic change, likely due to climate warming, has the potential to alter both the structure and function of tundra ecosystems. The analysis of shrub growth is improving our understanding...... of tundra vegetation dynamics and environmental changes. However, dendrochronological methods developed for trees, need to be adapted for the morphology and growth eccentricity of shrubs. Here, we review current and developing methods to measure radial and axial growth, estimate age, and assess growth...... dynamics in relation to environmental variables. Recent advances in sampling methods, analysis and applications have improved our ability to investigate growth and recruitment dynamics of shrubs. However, to extrapolate findings to the biome scale, future dendroecologicalwork will require improved...

  11. The use of invertebrates as indicators of environmental change in alpine rivers and lakes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khamis, K.; Hannah, D.M.; Brown, L.E.; Tiberti, R.; Milner, A.M.

    2014-01-01

    In alpine regions climatic change will alter the balance between water sources (rainfall, ice-melt, snowmelt, and groundwater) for aquatic systems, particularly modifying the relative contributions of meltwater, groundwater and rain to both rivers and lakes. While these changes are expected to have implications for alpine aquatic ecosystems, little is known about potential ecological tipping points and associated indicator taxa. We examined changes in biotic communities along a gradient of glacier influence for two study systems: (1) a stream network in the French Pyrénées; and (2) a network of lakes in the Italian Alps, with the aim of identifying potential indicator taxa (macroinvertebrates and zooplankton) of glacier retreat in these environments. To assess parallels in biotic responses across streams and lakes, both primary data and findings from other publications were synthesised. Using TITAN (Threshold Indicator Taxa ANalysis) changes in community composition of river taxa were identified at thresholds of < 5.1% glacier cover and < 66.6% meltwater contribution. Below these thresholds the loss of cold stenothermic benthic invertebrate taxa, Diamesa spp. and the Pyrenean endemic Rhyacophila angelieri was apparent. Some generalist taxa including Protonemura sp., Perla grandis, Baetis alpinus, Rhithrogena loyolaea and Microspectra sp. increased when glacier cover was < 2.7% and < 52% meltwater. Patterns were not as distinct for the alpine lakes, due to fewer sampling sites; however, Daphnia longispina grp. and the benthic invertebrate groups Plectopera and Planaria were identified as potential indicator taxa. While further work is required to assess potential indicator taxa for alpine lake systems, findings from alpine river systems were consistent between methods for assessing glacier influence (meltwater contribution/glacier cover). Hence, it is clear that TITAN could become a useful management tool, enabling: (i) the identification of taxa particularly

  12. The use of invertebrates as indicators of environmental change in alpine rivers and lakes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khamis, K.; Hannah, D.M. [School of Geography Earth and Environmental Science, University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT (United Kingdom); Brown, L.E. [School of Geography/water@leeds, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9JT (United Kingdom); Tiberti, R. [DSTA, Dipartimento di Scienze della Terra e dell' Ambiente, University of Pavia, Via Ferrata 9, 27100 Pavia (Italy); Alpine Wildlife Research Centre, Gran Paradiso National Park, Degioz 11, I-1101 Valsavarenche, Aosta (Italy); Milner, A.M., E-mail: a.m.milner@bham.ac.uk [School of Geography Earth and Environmental Science, University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT (United Kingdom); Institute of Arctic Biology, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK 99775 (United States)

    2014-09-15

    In alpine regions climatic change will alter the balance between water sources (rainfall, ice-melt, snowmelt, and groundwater) for aquatic systems, particularly modifying the relative contributions of meltwater, groundwater and rain to both rivers and lakes. While these changes are expected to have implications for alpine aquatic ecosystems, little is known about potential ecological tipping points and associated indicator taxa. We examined changes in biotic communities along a gradient of glacier influence for two study systems: (1) a stream network in the French Pyrénées; and (2) a network of lakes in the Italian Alps, with the aim of identifying potential indicator taxa (macroinvertebrates and zooplankton) of glacier retreat in these environments. To assess parallels in biotic responses across streams and lakes, both primary data and findings from other publications were synthesised. Using TITAN (Threshold Indicator Taxa ANalysis) changes in community composition of river taxa were identified at thresholds of < 5.1% glacier cover and < 66.6% meltwater contribution. Below these thresholds the loss of cold stenothermic benthic invertebrate taxa, Diamesa spp. and the Pyrenean endemic Rhyacophila angelieri was apparent. Some generalist taxa including Protonemura sp., Perla grandis, Baetis alpinus, Rhithrogena loyolaea and Microspectra sp. increased when glacier cover was < 2.7% and < 52% meltwater. Patterns were not as distinct for the alpine lakes, due to fewer sampling sites; however, Daphnia longispina grp. and the benthic invertebrate groups Plectopera and Planaria were identified as potential indicator taxa. While further work is required to assess potential indicator taxa for alpine lake systems, findings from alpine river systems were consistent between methods for assessing glacier influence (meltwater contribution/glacier cover). Hence, it is clear that TITAN could become a useful management tool, enabling: (i) the identification of taxa particularly

  13. Working toward integrated models of alpine plant distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Bradley Z; Randin, Christophe F; Boulangeat, Isabelle; Lavergne, Sébastien; Thuiller, Wilfried; Choler, Philippe

    2013-10-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) have been frequently employed to forecast the response of alpine plants to global changes. Efforts to model alpine plant distribution have thus far been primarily based on a correlative approach, in which ecological processes are implicitly addressed through a statistical relationship between observed species occurrences and environmental predictors. Recent evidence, however, highlights the shortcomings of correlative SDMs, especially in alpine landscapes where plant species tend to be decoupled from atmospheric conditions in micro-topographic habitats and are particularly exposed to geomorphic disturbances. While alpine plants respond to the same limiting factors as plants found at lower elevations, alpine environments impose a particular set of scale-dependent and hierarchical drivers that shape the realized niche of species and that require explicit consideration in a modelling context. Several recent studies in the European Alps have successfully integrated both correlative and process-based elements into distribution models of alpine plants, but for the time being a single integrative modelling framework that includes all key drivers remains elusive. As a first step in working toward a comprehensive integrated model applicable to alpine plant communities, we propose a conceptual framework that structures the primary mechanisms affecting alpine plant distributions. We group processes into four categories, including multi-scalar abiotic drivers, gradient dependent species interactions, dispersal and spatial-temporal plant responses to disturbance. Finally, we propose a methodological framework aimed at developing an integrated model to better predict alpine plant distribution.

  14. Global warming in the context of 2000 years of Australian alpine temperature and snow cover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGowan, Hamish; Callow, John Nikolaus; Soderholm, Joshua; McGrath, Gavan; Campbell, Micheline; Zhao, Jian-Xin

    2018-03-13

    Annual resolution reconstructions of alpine temperatures are rare, particularly for the Southern Hemisphere, while no snow cover reconstructions exist. These records are essential to place in context the impact of anthropogenic global warming against historical major natural climate events such as the Roman Warm Period (RWP), Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) and Little Ice Age (LIA). Here we show for a marginal alpine region of Australia using a carbon isotope speleothem reconstruction, warming over the past five decades has experienced equivalent magnitude of temperature change and snow cover decline to the RWP and MCA. The current rate of warming is unmatched for the past 2000 years and seasonal snow cover is at a minimum. On scales of several decades, mean maximum temperatures have undergone considerable change ≈ ± 0.8 °C highlighting local scale susceptibility to rapid temperature change, evidence of which is often masked in regional to hemisphere scale temperature reconstructions.

  15. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - Digital relief analysis - Abstract of work package 7

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Cattin, R. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents an abstract of the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The series of reports describes the development and use of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. This report presents an abstract of the work done as part of the Work Package 7 of the Alpine Windharvest project.

  16. Soil Fauna Affects Dissolved Carbon and Nitrogen in Foliar Litter in Alpine Forest and Alpine Meadow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Shu; Yang, Wanqin; Tan, Yu; Peng, Yan; Li, Jun; Tan, Bo; Wu, Fuzhong

    2015-01-01

    Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and total dissolved nitrogen (TDN) are generally considered important active biogeochemical pools of total carbon and nitrogen. Many studies have documented the contributions of soil fauna to litter decomposition, but the effects of the soil fauna on labile substances (i.e., DOC and TDN) in litter during early decomposition are not completely clear. Therefore, a field litterbag experiment was carried out from 13th November 2013 to 23rd October 2014 in an alpine forest and an alpine meadow located on the eastern Tibetan Plateau. Litterbags with different mesh sizes were used to provide access to or prohibit the access of the soil fauna, and the concentrations of DOC and TDN in the foliar litter were measured during the winter (the onset of freezing, deep freezing and thawing stage) and the growing season (early and late). After one year of field incubation, the concentration of DOC in the litter significantly decreased, whereas the TDN concentration in the litter increased. Similar dynamic patterns were detected under the effects of the soil fauna on both DOC and TDN in the litter between the alpine forest and the alpine meadow. The soil fauna showed greater positive effects on decreasing DOC concentration in the litter in the winter than in the growing season. In contrast, the dynamics of TND in the litter were related to seasonal changes in environmental factors, rather than the soil fauna. In addition, the soil fauna promoted a decrease in litter DOC/TDN ratio in both the alpine forest and the alpine meadow throughout the first year of decomposition, except for in the late growing season. These results suggest that the soil fauna can promote decreases in DOC and TDN concentrations in litter, contributing to early litter decomposition in these cold biomes.

  17. Experimental Warming Aggravates Degradation-Induced Topsoil Drought in Alpine Meadows of The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, X.

    2017-12-01

    Climatic warming is presumed to cause topsoil drought by increasing evapotranspiration and water infiltration, and by progressively inducing land degradation in alpine meadows of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. However, how soil moisture and temperature patterns of degraded alpine meadows respond to climate warming remains unclear. A six-year continuous warming experiment was carried out in both degraded and undegraded alpine meadows in the source region of the Yangtze River. The goal was to identify the effects of climatic warming and land degradation on soil moisture (θ), soil surface temperature (Tsfc), and soil temperature (Ts). In the present study, land degradation significantly reduced θ by 4.5-6.1% at a depth of 0-100 cm (P soil surface. Experimental warming aggravated topsoil drought caused by land degradation, intensified the magnitude of degradation, and caused a positive feedback in the degraded alpine meadow ecosystem. Therefore, an immediate need exists to restore degraded alpine meadow grasslands in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau in anticipation of a warmer future.

  18. A half century of change in alpine treeline patterns at Glacier National Park, Montana, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klasner, F.L.; Fagre, D.B.

    2002-01-01

    Using sequential aerial photography, we identified changes in the spatial distribution of subalpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa) habitat at the alpine treeline ecotone. Six 40-ha study sites in the McDonald Creek drainage of Glacier National Park contained subalpine fir forests that graded into alpine tundra. Over a 46-yr period, altitudinal changes in the location of alpine treeline ecotone were not observed. However, over this 46-yr period the area of krummholz, patch-forest, and continuous canopy forest increased by 3.4%, and tree density increased within existing patches of krummholz and patch-forest. Change in subalpine fir vegetation patterns within 100 m of trails was also compared to areas without trails. Within 100 m of trails, the number of small, discrete krummholz stands increased compared to areas without trails, but there was no significant change in total krummholz area. We used historical terrestrial photography to expand the period (to 70 yr) considered. This photography supported the conclusions that a more abrupt ecotone transition developed from forest to tundra at alpine treeline, that tree density within forested areas increased, and that krummholz became fragmented along trails. This local assessment of fine-grained change in the alpine treeline ecotone provides a comparative base for looking at ecotone change in other mountain regions throughout the world.

  19. Vertical distribution of the alpine lepidoptera in the Carpathians and in the Balkan peninsula in relation to the zonation of the vegetation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Varga, Z. S.

    2001-12-01

    Full Text Available The vertical distribution of arctic-alpine, alpine and Balkanic oreal species is discussed in connection with the vertical zonation of the vegetation, climatic conditions, substrate, type of alpine vegetation and co-occurrences of related species. Arctic-alpine species have mostly a Eurasian distribution and occur in the Arctic and in the alpine and subnival zones of the Central and Southern European high mountains with expressed glacial morphology and alpine vegetation. Alpine species are mostly European species and they are connected to the alpine and subnival zones of Central and South European high mountains. Balkanic oreal species are mostly southeast European species which in some cases occur locally in the southern parts of the Alps and Carpathians. Balkanic oreal species are most numerous at the timberline, preferred habitats being grasslands in the upper subalpine belts. The more diverse habitats of limestone mountains are usually home to a higher number of alpine (s. l. species than that of the mountains consisting of acidic rocks. The apparent petrophily of several alpine and tundro-alpine species correlates with their sheltering behaviour. The vertical distribution of butterflies is probably influenced also by the competition of closely related species. Closely related species often show some types of habitat partitioning. Data on species numbers and vertical distribution of species are presented in the tables 1-4.

    [de]
    Die vertikale Verbreitung der arktisch-alpinen, alpinen und balkanischen Orealarten wird hier im Zusammenhang mit den vertikalen Stufenfolgen der Vegetation, den klimatischen Verhdltnissen, den geologischen und geomorphologischen Bedingungen, den Vegetationstypen und dem Vorkommen der verwandten Arten behandelt. Die arktisch-alpinen Arten haben meist eine eurasiatische Verbreitung, und sie kommen sowohl in derArktis und in den alpinen-subnivalen Stufen der mittel- und südeuropaischen Hochgebirge vor. Die

  20. Developing a high-resolution regional atmospheric reanalysis for Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Christopher; Fox-Hughes, Paul; Su, Chun-Hsu; Jakob, Dörte; Kociuba, Greg; Eisenberg, Nathan; Steinle, Peter; Harris, Rebecca; Corney, Stuart; Love, Peter; Remenyi, Tomas; Chladil, Mark; Bally, John; Bindoff, Nathan

    2017-04-01

    A dynamically consistent, long-term atmospheric reanalysis can be used to support high-quality assessments of environmental risk and likelihood of extreme events. Most reanalyses are presently based on coarse-scale global systems that are not suitable for regional assessments in fire risk, water and natural resources, amongst others. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology is currently working to close this gap by producing a high-resolution reanalysis over the Australian and New Zealand region to construct a sequence of atmospheric conditions at sub-hourly intervals over the past 25 years from 1990. The Australia reanalysis consists of a convective-scale analysis nested within a 12 km regional-scale reanalysis, which is bounded by a coarse-scale ERA-Interim reanalysis that provides the required boundary and initial conditions. We use an unchanging atmospheric modelling suite based on the UERRA system used at the UK Met Office and the more recent version of the Bureau of Meteorology's operational numerical prediction model used in ACCESS-R (Australian Community Climate and Earth-System Simulator-Regional system). An advanced (4-dimensional variational) data assimilation scheme is used to optimally combine model physics with multiple observations from aircrafts, sondes, surface observations and satellites to create a best estimate of state of the atmosphere over a 6-hour moving window. This analysis is in turn used to drive a higher-resolution (1.5 km) downscaling model over selected subdomains within Australia, currently eastern New South Wales and Tasmania, with the capability to support this anywhere in the Australia-New Zealand domain. The temporal resolution of the gridded analysis fields for both the regional and higher-resolution subdomains are generally one hour, with many fields such as 10 m winds and 2 m temperatures available every 10 minutes. The reanalysis also produces many other variables that include wind, temperature, moisture, pressure, cloud cover

  1. Microsatellite Markers for the Chameleon Grasshopper (Kosciuscola tristis (Orthoptera: Acrididae, an Australian Alpine Specialist

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ange-Marie Risterucci

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available A set of polymorphic loci was characterised using an enrichment library for the Australian alpine specialist, the chameleon grasshopper (Kosciuscola tristis, an atypical grasshopper known for its remarkable temperature-controlled colour change. The number of alleles per locus ranged from three to 20 and observed heterozygosity from 0.16 to 0.76. These are the first microsatellite markers for a non-endangered Australian alpine animal and will inform questions of gene flow across the sky islands of this unique and threatened region.

  2. Evaluating the Contributions of Atmospheric Deposition of Carbon and Other Nutrients to Nitrification in Alpine Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldani, K. M.; Mladenov, N.; Williams, M. W.

    2013-12-01

    The Colorado Front Range of the Rocky Mountains contains undeveloped, barren soils, yet in this environment there is strong evidence for a microbial role in increased nitrogen (N) export. Barren soils in alpine environments are severely carbon-limited, which is the main energy source for microbial activity and sustenance of life. It has been shown that atmospheric deposition can contain high amounts of organic carbon (C). Atmospheric pollutants, dust events, and biological aerosols, such as bacteria, may be important contributors to the atmospheric organic C load. In this stage of the research we evaluated seasonal trends in the chemical composition and optical spectroscopic (fluorescence and UV-vis absorbance) signatures of snow, wet deposition, and dry deposition in an alpine environment at Niwot Ridge in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado to obtain a better understanding of the sources and chemical character of atmospheric deposition. Our results reveal a positive trend between dissolved organic carbon concentrations and calcium, nitrate and sulfate concentrations in wet and dry deposition, which may be derived from such sources as dust and urban air pollution. We also observed the presence of seasonally-variable fluorescent components that may be attributed to fluorescent pigments in bacteria. These results are relevant because atmospheric inputs of carbon and other nutrients may influence nitrification in barren, alpine soils and, ultimately, the export of nitrate to alpine watersheds.

  3. Alpine crossroads or origin of genetic diversity? Comparative phylogeography of two sympatric microgastropod species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander M Weigand

    Full Text Available The Alpine Region, constituting the Alps and the Dinaric Alps, has played a major role in the formation of current patterns of biodiversity either as a contact zone of postglacial expanding lineages or as the origin of genetic diversity. In our study, we tested these hypotheses for two widespread, sympatric microgastropod taxa--Carychium minimum O.F. Müller, 1774 and Carychium tridentatum (Risso, 1826 (Gastropoda, Eupulmonata, Carychiidae--by using COI sequence data and species potential distribution models analyzed in a statistical phylogeographical framework. Additionally, we examined disjunct transatlantic populations of those taxa from the Azores and North America. In general, both Carychium taxa demonstrate a genetic structure composed of several differentiated haplotype lineages most likely resulting from allopatric diversification in isolated refugial areas during the Pleistocene glacial periods. However, the genetic structure of Carychium minimum is more pronounced, which can be attributed to ecological constraints relating to habitat proximity to permanent bodies of water. For most of the Carychium lineages, the broader Alpine Region was identified as the likely origin of genetic diversity. Several lineages are endemic to the broader Alpine Region whereas a single lineage per species underwent a postglacial expansion to (recolonize previously unsuitable habitats, e.g. in Northern Europe. The source populations of those expanding lineages can be traced back to the Eastern and Western Alps. Consequently, we identify the Alpine Region as a significant 'hot-spot' for the formation of genetic diversity within European Carychium lineages. Passive dispersal via anthropogenic means best explains the presence of transatlantic European Carychium populations on the Azores and in North America. We conclude that passive (anthropogenic transport could mislead the interpretation of observed phylogeographical patterns in general.

  4. Mesozoic Alpine facies deposition as a result of past latitudinal plate motion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muttoni, Giovanni; Erba, Elisabetta; Kent, Dennis V; Bachtadse, Valerian

    2005-03-03

    The fragmentation of Pangaea as a consequence of the opening of the Atlantic Ocean is documented in the Alpine-Mediterranean region by the onset of widespread pelagic sedimentation. Shallow-water sediments were replaced by mainly pelagic limestones in the Early Jurassic period, radiolarian cherts in the Middle-Late Jurassic period, and again pelagic limestones in the Late Jurassic-Cretaceous period. During initial extension, basin subsidence below the carbonate compensation depth (CCD) is thought to have triggered the transition from Early Jurassic limestones to Middle-Late Jurassic radiolarites. It has been proposed that the transition from radiolarites to limestones in the Late Jurassic period was due to an increase in calcareous nannoplankton abundance when the CCD was depressed below the ocean floor. But in modern oceans, sediments below the CCD are not necessarily radiolaritic. Here we present palaeomagnetic samples from the Jurassic-Cretaceous pelagic succession exposed in the Lombardian basin, Italy. On the basis of an analysis of our palaeolatitudinal data in a broader palaeogeographic context, we propose an alternative explanation for the above facies tripartition. We suggest that the Lombardian basin drifted initially towards, and subsequently away from, a near-equatorial upwelling zone of high biosiliceous productivity. Our tectonic model for the genesis of radiolarites adds an essential horizontal plate motion component to explanations involving only vertical variations of CCD relative to the ocean floor. It may explain the deposition of radiolarites throughout the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern region during the Jurassic period.

  5. Tracing the origin of pollution in French Alpine snow and aerosols using lead isotopic ratios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veysseyre, A M; Bollhöfer, A F; Rosman, K J; Ferrari, C P; Boutron, C F

    2001-11-15

    Fresh snow samples collected at 15 remote locations and aerosols collected at one location in the French Alps between November 1998 and April 1999 have been analyzed for Pb concentration and isotopic composition by thermal ionization mass spectrometry. The snow samples contained 19-1300 pg/g of Pb with isotopic ratios 206Pb/207Pb (208Pb/207Pb) of 1.1279-1.1607 (2.3983-2.4302). Airborne Pb concentrations at one sampling site ranged from 0.42 to 6.0 ng/m3 with isotopic ratios of 1.1321-1.1427 (2.4029-2.4160). Air mass trajectory analysis combined with isotopic compositions of potential source regions did not show discernible evidence of the long-range atmospheric transport of pollutants. Isotopic ratios in the Alpine snow samples and thus the free troposphere were generally higher than airborne Pb isotopic ratios in urban France, which coupled with the relatively high Pb concentrations suggested a regional anthropogenic Pb source, probably Italy but possibly Eastern Europe.

  6. The significance of Gosau-type basins for the Late Cretaceous tectonic history of the Alpine-Carpathian Belt.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Willingshofer, E.; Neubauer, F.; Cloetingh, S.A.P.L.

    1999-01-01

    A key feature of Late Creataceous tectonics throughout the Alpine-Carpathian-Pannonian (ALCAPA) region is the synchronous formation of sedimentary basins (Gosau basins) and exhumation of metamorphic domes. Initial subsidence, spatially varying in time (Cenomanian-Santonian), within Gosau-type basins

  7. Ontogenetic niche shifts in three Vaccinium species on a sub-alpine mountain side

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Auffret, Alistair G.; Meineri, Eric; Bruun, Hans Henrik

    2010-01-01

    Background: Climate warming in arctic and alpine regions is expected to result in the altitudinal migration of plant species, but current predictions neglect differences between species' regeneration niche and established niche. Aims: To examine potential recruitment of Vaccinium myrtillus, V. ul...

  8. Properties of Highly Rotationally Excited H2 in Photodissociation Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cummings, Sally Jane; Wan, Yier; Stancil, Phillip C.; Yang, Benhui H.; Zhang, Ziwei

    2018-06-01

    H2 is the dominant molecular species in the vast majority of interstellar environments and it plays a crucial role as a radiative coolant. In photodissociation regions, it is one of the primary emitters in the near to mid-infrared which are due to lines originating from highly excited rotational levels. However, collisional data for rotational levels j>10 are sparse, particularly for H2-H2 collisions. Utilizing new calculations for para-H2 and ortho-H2 collisional rate coefficients with H2 for j as high as 30, we investigate the effects of the new results in standard PDR models with the spectral simulation package Cloudy. We also perform Cloudy models of the Orion Bar and use Radex to explore rotational line ratio diagnostics. The resulting dataset of H2 collisional data should find wide application to other molecular environments. This work was support by Hubble Space Telescope grant HST-AR-13899.001-A and NASA grants NNX15AI61G and NNX16AF09G.

  9. Biomechanical factors influencing the performance of elite Alpine ski racers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hébert-Losier, Kim; Supej, Matej; Holmberg, Hans-Christer

    2014-04-01

    . Investigations on speed skiing (i.e., downhill and super-G) primarily examined the effect of aerodynamic drag on performance, whereas the others examined turn characteristics, energetic principles, technical and tactical skills, and individual traits of high-performing skiers. The range of biomechanical factors reported to influence performance included energy dissipation and conservation, aerodynamic drag and frictional forces, ground reaction force, turn radius, and trajectory of the skis and/or centre of mass. The biomechanical differences between turn techniques, inter-dependency of turns, and abilities of individuals were also identified as influential factors in skiing performance. In the case of slalom and giant slalom events, performance could be enhanced by steering the skis in such a manner to reduce the ski-snow friction and thereby energy dissipated. This was accomplished by earlier initiation of turns, longer path length and trajectory, earlier and smoother application of ground reaction forces, and carving (rather than skidding). During speed skiing, minimizing the exposed frontal area and positioning the arms close to the body were shown to reduce the energy loss due to aerodynamic drag and thereby decrease run times. In actual races, a consistently good performance (i.e., fast time) on different sections of the course, terrains, and snow conditions was a characteristic feature of winners during technical events because these skiers could maximize gains from their individual strengths and minimize losses from their respective weaknesses. Most of the articles reviewed were limited to investigating a relatively small sample size, which is a usual limitation in research on elite athletes. Of further concern was the low number of females studied, representing less than 4% of all the subjects examined in the articles reviewed. In addition, although overall run time is the ultimate measure of performance in alpine ski racing, several other measures of instantaneous

  10. A comparative phylogeographic study reveals discordant evolutionary histories of alpine ground beetles (Coleoptera, Carabidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weng, Yi-Ming; Yang, Man-Miao; Yeh, Wen-Bin

    2016-04-01

    Taiwan, an island with three major mountain ranges, provides an ideal topography to study mountain-island effect on organisms that would be diversified in the isolation areas. Glaciations, however, might drive these organisms to lower elevations, causing gene flow among previously isolated populations. Two hypotheses have been proposed to depict the possible refugia for alpine organisms during glaciations. Nunatak hypothesis suggests that alpine species might have stayed in situ in high mountain areas during glaciations. Massif de refuge, on the other hand, proposes that alpine species might have migrated to lower ice-free areas. By sampling five sympatric carabid species of Nebria and Leistus, and using two mitochondrial genes and two nuclear genes, we evaluated the mountain-island effect on alpine carabids and tested the two proposed hypotheses with comparative phylogeographic method. Results from the phylogenetic relationships, network analysis, lineage calibration, and genetic structure indicate that the deep divergence among populations in all L. smetanai, N. formosana, and N. niitakana was subjected to long-term isolation, a phenomenon in agreement with the nunatak hypothesis. However, genetic admixture among populations of N. uenoiana and some populations of L. nokoensis complex suggests that gene flow occurred during glaciations, as a massif de refuge depicts. The speciation event in N. niitakana is estimated to have occurred before 1.89 million years ago (Mya), while differentiation among isolated populations in N. niitakana, N. formosana, L. smetanai, and L. nokoensis complex might have taken place during 0.65-1.65 Mya. While each of the alpine carabids arriving in Taiwan during different glaciation events acquired its evolutionary history, all of them had confronted the existing mountain ranges.

  11. Characterising hydrological behaviour of springs draining different alpine formations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volze, N.; Smoorenburg, M.; Kienzler, P.; Naef, F.; Rabenstein, L.; Kinzelbach, W.

    2012-04-01

    The project SACflood (Susceptibility of alpine catchment flood runoff to changes in meteorological boundary conditions) concentrates on alpine areas and wants to identify catchments that show a damped reaction to runoff but may react unexpectedly strong to increased precipitation as observed in 2005 in the Schächen. The catchment showed a delayed and damped behaviour for smaller precipitation events but reacted with strongly increased discharge when a threshold amount of rainfall was reached, causing a flood with high damages. This is attributed to the complex interaction of storage and drainage mechanisms that are not yet well enough understood. Typical alpine geomorphic formations are identified that are likely to be associated with large storages which could considerably delay runoff reaction but still contribute to flow within a timescale relevant for flood formation. From these geomorphic formations deep drainage is measured as outflow from several springs. In addition natural tracers are measured in the springs. On a steep hill slope, associated to one of the observed springs, ground water levels are observed. Geoelectric profiles were recorded to depict the structure of the underground. Discharge measurements from the springs show remarkable differences between the sites. After long dry periods certain springs do not react to rainfall immediately but need considerable amounts of rain to increase discharge. Even steep slopes as well as large talus areas can substantially delay runoff. Observations of the groundwater levels reveal an unexpected picture of the underground. The water table is not as often assumed above the bedrock but at a depth of several meters within the highly fractured bedrock material. This can result in a much higher storage capacity of such slopes despite the steepness of the surface. On the basis of the results from field work conceptual ideas are developed. The influence of parameters such as the depth of the unsaturated zone and the

  12. Site-specific landslide assessment in Alpine area using a reliable integrated monitoring system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romeo, Saverio; Di Matteo, Lucio; Kieffer, Daniel Scott

    2016-04-01

    Rockfalls are one of major cause of landslide fatalities around the world. The present work discusses the reliability of integrated monitoring of displacements in a rockfall within the Alpine region (Salzburg Land - Austria), taking into account also the effect of the ongoing climate change. Due to the unpredictability of the frequency and magnitude, that threatens human lives and infrastructure, frequently it is necessary to implement an efficient monitoring system. For this reason, during the last decades, integrated monitoring systems of unstable slopes were widely developed and used (e.g., extensometers, cameras, remote sensing, etc.). In this framework, Remote Sensing techniques, such as GBInSAR technique (Groung-Based Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar), have emerged as efficient and powerful tools for deformation monitoring. GBInSAR measurements can be useful to achieve an early warning system using surface deformation parameters as ground displacement or inverse velocity (for semi-empirical forecasting methods). In order to check the reliability of GBInSAR and to monitor the evolution of landslide, it is very important to integrate different techniques. Indeed, a multi-instrumental approach is essential to investigate movements both in surface and in depth and the use of different monitoring techniques allows to perform a cross analysis of the data and to minimize errors, to check the data quality and to improve the monitoring system. During 2013, an intense and complete monitoring campaign has been conducted on the Ingelsberg landslide. By analyzing both historical temperature series (HISTALP) recorded during the last century and those from local weather stations, temperature values (Autumn-Winter, Winter and Spring) are clearly increased in Bad Hofgastein area as well as in Alpine region. As consequence, in the last decades the rockfall events have been shifted from spring to summer due to warmer winters. It is interesting to point out that

  13. Rapid response of alpine timberline vegetation to the Younger Dryas climate oscillation in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reasoner, M.A.; Jodry, M.A.

    2000-01-01

    Paleobotanical records from two high-altitude (>3,300 m) sites in Colorado show a clear and immediate response to the Younger Dryas climate oscillation. The Black Mountain Lake and Sky Pond records indicate that alpine timberline migrated upslope to near-modern elevations during the late Bolling-Allerod (13.6--12.9 ka). Subsequent declines in arboreal pollen percentages and accumulation rates during the Younger Dryas interval (12.9--11.7 ka) reflect a downslope displacement of the alpine timberline ecotone of 60--120 m in elevation. This change translates to a cooling of summer temperature by ∼0.4--0.9 C and is consistent with proposed Younger Dryas advances of alpine glaciers in the Rocky Mountains to positions close to Little Ice Age maxima. Alpine timberline readvanced upslope to elevations above both sites between 11.7 and 11.4 ka. The concomitant response of temperature-sensitive alpine timberline vegetation in Colorado and late-glacial changes in North Atlantic thermohaline circulating implicates a rapid, widespread atmospheric transmission of the Younger Dryas climate oscillation

  14. Rapid response of alpine timberline vegetation to the Younger Dryas climate oscillation in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reasoner, M.A.; Jodry, M.A.

    2000-01-01

    Paleobotanical records from two high-altitude (>3,300 m) sites in Colorado show a clear and immediate response to the Younger Dryas climate oscillation. The Black Mountain Lake and Sky Pond records indicate that alpine timberline migrated upslope to near-modern elevations during the late Bolling-Allerod (13.6--12.9 ka). Subsequent declines in arboreal pollen percentages and accumulation rates during the Younger Dryas interval (12.9--11.7 ka) reflect a downslope displacement of the alpine timberline ecotone of 60--120 m in elevation. This change translates to a cooling of summer temperature by {approximately}0.4--0.9 C and is consistent with proposed Younger Dryas advances of alpine glaciers in the Rocky Mountains to positions close to Little Ice Age maxima. Alpine timberline readvanced upslope to elevations above both sites between 11.7 and 11.4 ka. The concomitant response of temperature-sensitive alpine timberline vegetation in Colorado and late-glacial changes in North Atlantic thermohaline circulating implicates a rapid, widespread atmospheric transmission of the Younger Dryas climate oscillation.

  15. Permafrost collapse shifts alpine tundra to a carbon source but reduces N2O and CH4 release on the northern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mu, C.

    2017-12-01

    Important unknowns remain about how abrupt permafrost collapse (thermokarst) affects carbon balance and greenhouse gas flux, limiting our ability to predict the magnitude and timing of the permafrost carbon feedback. We measured monthly, growing-season fluxes of CO2, CH4, and N2O at a large thermokarst feature in alpine tundra on the northern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP). Thermokarst formation disrupted plant growth and soil hydrology, shifting the ecosystem from a growing-season carbon sink to a weak source, but decreasing feature-level CH4 and N2O flux. Temperature-corrected ecosystem respiration from decomposing permafrost soil was 2.7 to 9.5-fold higher than in similar features from Arctic and Boreal regions, suggesting that warmer and dryer conditions on the northern QTP could accelerate carbon decomposition following permafrost collapse. N2O flux was similar to the highest values reported for Arctic ecosystems, and was 60% higher from exposed mineral soil on the feature floor, confirming Arctic observations of coupled nitrification and denitrification in collapsed soils. Q10 values for respiration were typically over 4, suggesting high temperature sensitivity of thawed carbon. Taken together, these results suggest that QTP permafrost carbon in alpine tundra is highly vulnerable to mineralization following thaw, and that N2O production could be an important non-carbon permafrost climate feedback.

  16. The Balearic Islands in the Alpine Orogeny

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bourrouilh, R.

    2016-10-01

    The place of the Balearic Islands in the Alpine orogeny is examined using detailed sedimentology studies, stratigraphical studies from the Lower Devonian (Lochkovian) to modern times and a careful tectonic review of sedimentary formations from the Western Mediterranean. Despite being considered as the ultimate end of the north-eastern termination of the Betic Cordillera, the history of the Balearic archipelago seems to be closer to the tectonic opening of the Gulf of Valencia and to the Corsica-Sardinia rotation, and thus to the tectonic history of the Western Mediterranean Sea, than to the tectonics of the Betic Cordillera which appear as its symmetrical image with respect to this opening. (Author)

  17. Alpine vegetation communities and the alpine-treeline ecotone boundary in New England as biomonitors for climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenneth D. Kimball; Douglas M. Weihrauch

    2000-01-01

    This study mapped and analyzed the alpine-treeline ecotone (ATE) boundary and alpine plant communities on the Presidential Range, New Hampshire and Mount Katahdin, Maine. These are sensitive biomonitoring parameters for plant community responses to climatic change. The ATE boundary spans a considerable elevational range, suggesting that shorter growing seasons with...

  18. Mesozoic and Cenozoic structural evolution of North Oman: New insights from high-quality 3D seismic from the Lekhwair area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazalgette, Loïc; Salem, Hisham

    2018-06-01

    This paper highlights the role of Triassic-Jurassic extension and late Cretaceous compression in the Mesozoic-Cenozoic (Alpine) structuring of North Oman. The syn/post-Mesozoic regional structural evolution is usually documented as a succession of two stages of deformation. The Alpine 1 phase, late Cretaceous in age, occurred in association with two ophiolite obduction stages (Semail and Masirah ophiolites). It was characterised by strike slip to extensional deformation in the North Oman foreland basin sub-surface. The Alpine 2 phase, Miocene in age, was related to the continental collision responsible for both the Zagros orogen and the uplift of the Oman Mountains. The Alpine 2 deformation was transpressional to compressional. Observation and interpretation of good quality 3D seismic in the Lekhwair High area enabled the distinction of two earlier phases. Early Mesozoic extension occurred concomitantly with the regional Triassic to Jurassic rifting, developing Jurassic-age normal faults. Late Cretaceous compression occurred prior to the main Alpine 1 phase and triggered the inversion of Jurassic-seated normal faults as well as the initiation of compressional folds in the Cretaceous overburden. These early phases have been ignored or overlooked as part of the North Oman history although they are at the origin of structures hosting major local and regional hydrocarbon accumulations.

  19. Temperature signal in suspended sediment export from an Alpine catchment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Anna; Molnar, Peter; Stutenbecker, Laura; Bakker, Maarten; Silva, Tiago A.; Schlunegger, Fritz; Lane, Stuart N.; Loizeau, Jean-Luc; Girardclos, Stéphanie

    2018-01-01

    hillslope erosion by rainfall on snow-free surfaces, and increased meltwater production on snow-free glacier surfaces. Despite the rise in air temperature, changes in mean discharge in the mid-1980s were not statistically significant, and their interpretation is complicated by hydropower reservoir management and the flushing operations at intakes. Overall, the results show that to explain changes in suspended sediment transport from large Alpine catchments it is necessary to include an understanding of the multitude of sediment sources involved together with the hydroclimatic conditioning of their activation (e.g. changes in precipitation, runoff, air temperature). In addition, this study points out that climate signals in suspended sediment dynamics may be visible even in highly regulated and human-impacted systems. This is particularly relevant for quantifying climate change and hydropower impacts on streamflow and sediment budgets in Alpine catchments.

  20. POPs and other persistent organic compounds in fish from remote alpine lakes in the Grisons, Switzerland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmid, P.; Gujer, E.; Zennegg, M. [Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research (EMPA), Duebendorf (Switzerland); Lanfranchi, M. [Agency for Nature and Environment of the Canton Grisons, Chur (Switzerland)

    2004-09-15

    Global transfer of persistent semivolatile organic compounds, such as persistent organic pollutants (POPs), is effected by long-range atmospheric transport in combination with condensation and volatilization processes. Within the global atmosphere, evaporation in warm latitudes and deposition in cold latitudes leads to a transfer of contaminants towards the poles. The phenomenon of atmospheric migration of semivolatile chemicals, such as PCB and DDT, has been predicted and associated with the term ''global distillation'' by Goldberg, and the model has been extensively reviewed by Mackay and Wania. For comparatively less volatile components such as PCDD/F and PBDE, particle-bound deposition is the dominating transfer mechanism. Therefore, the input of these compounds in remote alpine regions without point sources is controlled by atmospheric deposition (dry and wet) and condensation. For organochlorine compounds, such as pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB), it has been shown that accumulation is enhanced by temperaturecontrolled condensation also in alpine regions with low average temperatures. The hydrology of remote alpine lakes is determined by direct atmospheric deposition feeding and feeding with water from the surrounding catchment area, without significant inputs from tributaries or from nearby anthropogenic activities. Fish dwelling in these ecosystems represents an excellent indicator for the long-term input of bioaccumulating contaminants, such as POPs and other persistent organic compounds. In the present study, fish from 7 alpine lakes from the Grisons (Switzerland) situated between 2062 and 2637 m above sea level were investigated. With the exception of Laghetto Moesola which is situated adjacent to a mountain pass road, input from local anthropogenic emissions can be excluded for these lakes.

  1. Modelling mass movement susceptibility for Alpine infrastructure in the Karavank Mountains (Austria/Slovenia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, C.; Kern, K.; Lieb, G. K.

    2012-12-01

    The aim of this study is the generation of indicative susceptibility maps on a regional scale that can be used as a decision support tool for land use management (i.e. risk potential on alpine infrastructure). The study in particular focuses on geomorphological processes (rockfall and debris flows in unconsolidated rock) that reshape the land surface by erosion, transport and deposition. When interacting with human activity (e.g. road, alpine trails) such naturally occurring processes can quickly become natural hazards. The study area is located in the Karavank Mountains, a border region between Austria and Slovenia, and covers approx. 200 sq km with maximum altitudes above 2.000 m a.s.l. (Hochstuhl: 2.237 m a.s.l.). The Karavanks form an east-west striking mountain chain (approx. 120 km total length) of the southeastern Alps that consists mainly of thick Triassic carbonate sequences and, with less extent, Paleozoic carbonate rocks crystalline rocks. The mountain chain is separated into the Northern Karavanks and the Southern Karavanks by a structural boundary (Periadriatic Line). In addition, the area is known for extreme weather events due to Adriatic cyclones with daily accumulated precipitation of more than 200 mm that regularly trigger hazardous and torrential processes like rockfall events and debris flows. To assess the triggering factors and trajectories, two different disposition and process models (one for rockfall and one for debris flow, respectively) were developed. The information about potential source areas was obtained by combining various types of information (e.g. DTM derivatives, geotechnical units, vegetation). Threshold slope values for potential rockfall source areas were attributed to different lithological units according to field observations. The defined threshold slope angles cover values from 42° in Triassic carbonates up to 46° in massive crystalline rocks. For debris flows areas with a slope inclination model is based on the idea

  2. Tracer-based identification of rock glacier thawing in a glacierized Alpine catchment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engel, Michael; Penna, Daniele; Tirler, Werner; Comiti, Francesco

    2017-04-01

    Current warming in high mountains leads to increased melting of snow, glacier ice and permafrost. In particular rock glaciers, as a creeping form of mountain permafrost, may release contaminants such as heavy metals into the stream during intense melting periods in summer. This may have strong impacts on both water quantity and quality of fresh water resources but might also harm the aquatic fauna in mountain regions. In this context, the present study used stable isotopes of water and electrical conductivity (EC) combined with trace, major and minor elements to identify the influence of permafrost thawing on the water quality in the glacierized Solda catchment (130 km2) in South Tyrol (Italy). We carried out a monthly sampling of two springs fed by an active rock glacier at about 2600 m a.s.l. from July to October 2015. Furthermore, we took monthly water samples from different stream sections of the Solda River (1110 to m a.s.l.) from March to November 2015. Meteorological data were measured by an Automatic Weather Station at 2825 m a.s.l. of the Hydrographic Office (Autonomous Province of Bozen-Bolzano). First results show that water from the rock glacier springs and stream water fell along the global meteoric water line. Spring water was slightly more variable in isotopic ratio (δ2H: -91 to - 105 ) and less variable in dissolved solutes (EC: 380 to 611 μS/cm) than stream water (δ2H: -96 to - 107 ‰ and EC: 212 to 927 μS/cm). Both spring water and stream water showed a pronounced drop in EC during July and August, very likely induced by increased melt water dilution. In both water types, element concentrations of Ca and Mg were highest (up to 160 and 20 mg/l, respectively). In September, spring water showed higher concentrations in Cu, As, and Pb than stream water, indicating that these elements partly exceeded the concentration limit for drinking water. These observations highlight the important control, which rock glacier thawing may have on water quality

  3. Quantifying the contribution of the root system of alpine vegetation in the soil aggregate stability of moraine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Csilla Hudek

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available One fifth of the world's population is living in mountains or in their surrounding areas. This anthropogenic pressure continues to grow with the increasing number of settlements, especially in areas connected to touristic activities, such as the Italian Alps. The process of soil formation on high mountains is particularly slow and these soils are particularly vulnerable to soil degradation. In alpine regions, extreme meteorological events are increasingly frequent due to climate change, speeding up the process of soil degradation and increasing the number of severe erosion processes, shallow landslides and debris flows. Vegetation cover plays a crucial role in the stabilization of mountain soils thereby reducing the risk of natural hazards effecting downslope areas. Soil aggregate stability is one of the main soil properties that can be linked to soil loss processes. Soils developed on moraines in recently deglaciated areas typically have low levels of soil aggregation, and a limited or discontinuous vegetation cover making them more susceptible to degradation. However, soil structure can be influenced by the root system of the vegetation. Roots are actively involved in the formation of water-stable soil aggregation, increasing the stability of the soil and its nutrient content. In the present study, we aim to quantify the effect of the root system of alpine vegetation on the soil aggregate stability of the forefield of the Lys glacier, in the Aosta Valley (NW-Italy. This proglacial area provides the opportunity to study how the root system of ten pioneer alpine species from different successional stages can contribute to soil development and soil stabilization. To quantify the aggregate stability of root permeated soils, a modified wet sieving method was employed. The root length per soil volume of the different species was also determined and later correlated with the aggregate stability results. The results showed that soil aggregate

  4. The relative age effect and the influence on performance in youth alpine ski racing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Lisa; Hildebrandt, Carolin; Raschner, Christian

    2015-03-01

    The relative age effect (RAE), which refers to an over representation of athletes born early in a selection year, recently was proven to be present in alpine skiing. However, it was not made apparent whether the RAE exists as early as at the youngest level of youth ski racing at national level, nor whether the relative age influences racing performance. As a consequence, the purpose of the present study was twofold: first, to examine the extent of the RAE and second, to assess the influence the relative age has on the overall performance at the youngest levels of youth ski racing. The study included the investigation of 1,438 participants of the Austrian Kids Cup and 1,004 participants of the Teenager Cup at the provincial level, as well as 250 finalists of the Kids Cup and 150 finalists of the Teenager Cup at the national level. Chi²-tests revealed a highly significant RAE already at the youngest level of youth ski racing (Kids Cup) at both the provincial and national levels. There are not again favorably selected the relatively older athletes from the first into the second level of youth ski racing (Teenager Cup). Among the athletes of the Kids Cup, the relative age quarter distribution differed highly significantly from the distribution of the total sample with an over representation of relatively older athletes by comparison taking the top three positions. The data revealed that relative age had a highly significant influence on performance. This study demonstrated that the RAE poses a problem as early as the youngest level of youth ski racing, thereby indicating that many young talented kids are discriminated against, diminishing any chance they might have of becoming elite athletes despite their talents and efforts. The RAE influences not only the participation rate in alpine skiing, but also the performances. As a result, changes in the talent development system are imperative. Key pointsThe relative age influences not only the participation in youth ski

  5. Environmental impacts of urban snow management - The alpine case study of Innsbruck

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Engelhard, C.; De Toffol, S.; Lek, I.; Rauch, W.; Dallinger, R.

    2007-01-01

    In regions with colder climate, snow at roads can accumulate significant amounts of pollutant chemicals. In northern countries various efforts have been made to face this problem, but for the alpine region little is known about the pollution of urban snow. The present case study was carried out in the city of Innsbruck (Austria). It aimed at measuring pollution of roadside snow and estimating the impact of snow management practises on environmental quality. Concentrations of copper, zinc, lead, cadmium, suspended solids and chloride were determined during a series of sampling events. Various locations with low and high traffic densities and in different distances from a highway have been investigated. The concentrations of copper were generally higher at sites with high traffic density compared to locations with low traffic impact. In contrast to this, the concentrations of zinc and lead remained almost unvaried irrespective of traffic density at the different sampling sites. For cadmium, the picture was more diverse, showing moderately elevated concentrations of this metal also at the urban reference site not polluted by traffic. This indicates that there may be also other important sources for cadmium besides traffic. Suspended solids accumulated in the roadside snow, the highest concentrations were found at the sites with high traffic density. The chloride concentrations were considerable in the snow, especially at the highway. Based on the results of the present measurement campaign, the environmental impact of snow disposal in rivers was also estimated. A negative impact on rivers from snow disposal seems likely to occur, although the discharged loads could only be calculated with substantial uncertainty, considering the high variability of the measured pollutant concentrations. For a more accurate evaluation of this management practise on rivers, further investigations would be necessary

  6. Metabolic Profiling of Alpine and Ecuadorian Lichens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Verena K. Mittermeier

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Non-targeted 1H-NMR methods were used to determine metabolite profiles from crude extracts of Alpine and Ecuadorian lichens collected from their natural habitats. In control experiments, the robustness of metabolite detection and quantification was estimated using replicate measurements of Stereocaulon alpinum extracts. The deviations in the overall metabolite fingerprints were low when analyzing S. alpinum collections from different locations or during different annual and seasonal periods. In contrast, metabolite profiles observed from extracts of different Alpine and Ecuadorian lichens clearly revealed genus- and species-specific profiles. The discriminating functions determining cluster formation in principle component analysis (PCA were due to differences in the amounts of genus-specific compounds such as sticticin from the Sticta species, but also in the amounts of ubiquitous metabolites, such as sugar alcohols or trehalose. However, varying concentrations of these metabolites from the same lichen species e.g., due to different environmental conditions appeared of minor relevance for the overall cluster formation in PCA. The metabolic clusters matched phylogenetic analyses using nuclear ribosomal DNA (nrDNA internal transcribed spacer (ITS sequences of lichen mycobionts, as exemplified for the genus Sticta. It can be concluded that NMR-based non-targeted metabolic profiling is a useful tool in the chemo-taxonomy of lichens. The same approach could also facilitate the discovery of novel lichen metabolites on a rapid and systematical basis.

  7. A comparison of Alpine emissions to forest soil and spruce needle loads for persistent organic pollutants (POPs)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belis, C.A., E-mail: claudio.belis@jrc.ec.europa.e [Regional Agency for Environmental Protection of Lombardia (Italy); Offenthaler, I.; Uhl, M.; Nurmi-Legat, J. [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria); Bassan, R. [Regional Agency for Environmental Prevention and Protection of Veneto (Italy); Jakobi, G.; Kirchner, M. [Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen, German Research Centre for Environment and Health (Germany); Knoth, W. [German Federal Environmental Agency (Germany); Kraeuchi, N. [WSL Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (Switzerland); Levy, W. [Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen, German Research Centre for Environment and Health (Germany); Magnani, T. [Regional Agency for Environmental Protection of Lombardia (Italy); Moche, W. [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria); Schramm, K.-W. [Regional Agency for Environmental Prevention and Protection of Veneto (Italy); Simoncic, P. [Slovenian Forestry Institute (Slovenia); Weiss, P. [Umweltbundesamt GmbH (Austria)

    2009-12-15

    The project MONARPOP analysed the concentrations of semivolatile organic compounds (SVOCs) in two important sink compartments, needles of Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst.) and forest soil from 40 remote Alpine forest sites in Austria, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland. In the present study the load of PCDD/F, PCB, PBDE, PAH, HCB, HCH and DDT in the Alps calculated on the basis of measured data are compared with their estimated emissions in the Alpine region. It comes out that the masses of the studied pollutants stored in the forests are higher than the corresponding emissions in the Alpine area indicating that the Alps are a sink for POPs advected from surrounding areas. It is assumed that local emissions of PCDD/F and PAH deriving from biomass burning are probably underestimated and that the pool of these pollutants in the forests represents the accumulation over some decades. - The loads of POPs in the Alps are higher than their emissions in the Alpine region.

  8. Targeted grazing for the restoration of sub-alpine shrub-encroached grasslands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimiliano Probo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The decline of agro-pastoral activities has led to a widespread tree and shrub-encroachment of former semi-natural meso-eutrophic grasslands in many European mountain regions. Temporary night camp areas (TNCA and mineral mix supplements for targeted cattle were arranged over shrub-encroached areas to restore grassland vegetation within the Val Troncea Natural Park (Italy. From 2011 to 2015, their effects on vegetation structure and pastoral value of forage were assessed along permanent transects. Four years after treatments, both practices were effective in reducing the shrub cover and increasing the cover and average height of the herbaceous layer, but changes were more remarkable within TNCA. Moreover, the arrangement of TNCA decreased the cover of nanophanerophytes and increased the cover of graminoids and high quality species, as well as the overall forage pastoral value. In conclusion, TNCA were the most effective pastoral practice to contrast shrub-encroachment and increase herbage mass and forage quality of sub-alpine grasslands.

  9. Land use and surface process domains on alpine hillslopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Nikolaus J.; Caviezel, Chatrina; Hunziker, Matthias

    2015-04-01

    Shrubs and trees are generally considered to protect hillslopes from erosion. As a consequence, shrub encroachment on mountain pastures after abandoning grazing is not considered a threat to soils. However, the abandonment of mown or grazed grasslands causes a shift in vegetation composition and thus a change in landscape ecology and geomorphology. On many alpine slopes, current changes in land use and vegetation cover are accompanied by climate change, potentially generating a new geomorphic regime. Most of the debate focuses on the effect of land abandonment on water erosion rates. Generally, an established perennial vegetation cover improves the mechanical anchoring of the soil and the regulation of the soil water budget, including runoff generation and erosion. However, changing vegetation composition affects many other above- and below-ground properties like root density, -diversity and -geometry, soil structure, pore volume and acidity. Each combination of these properties can lead to a distinct scenario of dominating surface processes, often not reflected by common erosion risk assessment procedures. The study of soil properties along a chronosequence of green alder (alnusviridis) encroachment on the Unteralptal in central Switzerland reveals that shrub encroachment changes soil and vegetation properties towards an increase of resistance to run-off related erosion processes, but a decrease of slope stability against shallow landslides. The latter are a particular threat because of the currently increasing frequency of slide-triggering high magnitude rainfalls. The potential change of process domain on alpine pastures highlights the need for a careful use of erosion models when assessing future land use and climate scenarios. In mountains, but also other intensively managed agricultural landscapes, risk assessment without the appropriate reflection on the shifting relevance of surface processes carries the risk of missing future threats to environmental

  10. Impacts of twenty years of experimental warming on soil carbon, nitrogen, moisture and soil across alpine/subarctic tundra communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    M. Alatalo, Juha; K. Jägerbrand, Annika; Juhanson, Jaanis

    2017-01-01

    High-altitude and alpine areas are predicted to experience rapid and substantial increases in future temperature, which may have serious impacts on soil carbon, nutrient and soil fauna. Here we report the impact of 20 years of experimental warming on soil properties and soil mites in three...... contrasting plant communities in alpine/subarctic Sweden. Long-term warming decreased juvenile oribatid mite density, but had no effect on adult oribatids density, total mite density, any major mite group or the most common species. Long-term warming also caused loss of nitrogen, carbon and moisture from...

  11. Basic Practices Aiding High-Performance Homeland Security Regional Partnerships

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Caudle, Sharon

    2006-01-01

    ....1 A national priority under the Goal is the use of geographic regions across the nation to share risk, engage in joint planning, and share resources to develop and sustain risk-based capability levels...

  12. Where to Combat Shrub Encroachment in Alpine Timberline Ecosystems: Combining Remotely-Sensed Vegetation Information with Species Habitat Modelling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronika Braunisch

    Full Text Available In many cultural landscapes, the abandonment of traditional grazing leads to encroachment of pastures by woody plants, which reduces habitat heterogeneity and impacts biodiversity typical of semi-open habitats. We developed a framework of mutually interacting spatial models to locate areas where shrub encroachment in Alpine treeline ecosystems deteriorates vulnerable species' habitat, using black grouse Tetrao tetrix (L. in the Swiss Alps as a study model. Combining field observations and remote-sensing information we 1 identified and located the six predominant treeline vegetation types; 2 modelled current black grouse breeding habitat as a function thereof so as to derive optimal habitat profiles; 3 simulated from these profiles the theoretical spatial extension of breeding habitat when assuming optimal vegetation conditions throughout; and used the discrepancy between (2 and (3 to 4 locate major aggregations of homogeneous shrub vegetation in otherwise suitable breeding habitat as priority sites for habitat restoration. All six vegetation types (alpine pasture, coniferous forest, Alnus viridis (Chaix, Rhododendron-dominated, Juniperus-dominated and mixed heathland were predicted with high accuracy (AUC >0.9. Breeding black grouse preferred a heterogeneous mosaic of vegetation types, with none exceeding 50% cover. While 15% of the timberline belt currently offered suitable breeding habitat, twice that fraction (29% would potentially be suitable when assuming optimal shrub and ground vegetation conditions throughout the study area. Yet, only 10% of this difference was attributed to habitat deterioration by shrub-encroachment of dense heathland (all types 5.2% and Alnus viridis (4.8%. The presented method provides both a general, large-scale assessment of areas covered by dense shrub vegetation as well as specific target values and priority areas for habitat restoration related to a selected target organism. This facilitates optimizing the

  13. Where to Combat Shrub Encroachment in Alpine Timberline Ecosystems: Combining Remotely-Sensed Vegetation Information with Species Habitat Modelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braunisch, Veronika; Patthey, Patrick; Arlettaz, Raphaël

    2016-01-01

    In many cultural landscapes, the abandonment of traditional grazing leads to encroachment of pastures by woody plants, which reduces habitat heterogeneity and impacts biodiversity typical of semi-open habitats. We developed a framework of mutually interacting spatial models to locate areas where shrub encroachment in Alpine treeline ecosystems deteriorates vulnerable species' habitat, using black grouse Tetrao tetrix (L.) in the Swiss Alps as a study model. Combining field observations and remote-sensing information we 1) identified and located the six predominant treeline vegetation types; 2) modelled current black grouse breeding habitat as a function thereof so as to derive optimal habitat profiles; 3) simulated from these profiles the theoretical spatial extension of breeding habitat when assuming optimal vegetation conditions throughout; and used the discrepancy between (2) and (3) to 4) locate major aggregations of homogeneous shrub vegetation in otherwise suitable breeding habitat as priority sites for habitat restoration. All six vegetation types (alpine pasture, coniferous forest, Alnus viridis (Chaix), Rhododendron-dominated, Juniperus-dominated and mixed heathland) were predicted with high accuracy (AUC >0.9). Breeding black grouse preferred a heterogeneous mosaic of vegetation types, with none exceeding 50% cover. While 15% of the timberline belt currently offered suitable breeding habitat, twice that fraction (29%) would potentially be suitable when assuming optimal shrub and ground vegetation conditions throughout the study area. Yet, only 10% of this difference was attributed to habitat deterioration by shrub-encroachment of dense heathland (all types 5.2%) and Alnus viridis (4.8%). The presented method provides both a general, large-scale assessment of areas covered by dense shrub vegetation as well as specific target values and priority areas for habitat restoration related to a selected target organism. This facilitates optimizing the spatial

  14. Simulating the influence of snow surface processes on soil moisture dynamics and streamflow generation in an alpine catchment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Wever

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available The assessment of flood risks in alpine, snow-covered catchments requires an understanding of the linkage between the snow cover, soil and discharge in the stream network. Here, we apply the comprehensive, distributed model Alpine3D to investigate the role of soil moisture in the predisposition of the Dischma catchment in Switzerland to high flows from rainfall and snowmelt. The recently updated soil module of the physics-based multilayer snow cover model SNOWPACK, which solves the surface energy and mass balance in Alpine3D, is verified against soil moisture measurements at seven sites and various depths inside and in close proximity to the Dischma catchment. Measurements and simulations in such terrain are difficult and consequently, soil moisture was simulated with varying degrees of success. Differences between simulated and measured soil moisture mainly arise from an overestimation of soil freezing and an absence of a groundwater description in the Alpine3D model. Both were found to have an influence in the soil moisture measurements. Using the Alpine3D simulation as the surface scheme for a spatially explicit hydrologic response model using a travel time distribution approach for interflow and baseflow, streamflow simulations were performed for the discharge from the catchment. The streamflow simulations provided a closer agreement with observed streamflow when driving the hydrologic response model with soil water fluxes at 30 cm depth in the Alpine3D model. Performance decreased when using the 2 cm soil water flux, thereby mostly ignoring soil processes. This illustrates that the role of soil moisture is important to take into account when understanding the relationship between both snowpack runoff and rainfall and catchment discharge in high alpine terrain. However, using the soil water flux at 60 cm depth to drive the hydrologic response model also decreased its performance, indicating that an optimal soil depth to include in

  15. Temperature sensitivity of extreme precipitation events in the south-eastern Alpine forelands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeer, Katharina; Kirchengast, Gottfried

    2016-04-01

    How will convective precipitation intensities and patterns evolve in a warming climate on a regional to local scale? Studies on the scaling of precipitation intensities with temperature are used to test observational and climate model data against the hypothesis that the change of precipitation with temperature will essentially follow the Clausius-Clapeyron (CC) equation, which corresponds to a rate of increase of the water holding capacity of the atmosphere by 6-7 % per Kelvin (CC rate). A growing number of studies in various regions and with varying approaches suggests that the overall picture of the temperature-precipitation relationship is heterogeneous, with scaling rates shearing off the CC rate in both upward and downward directions. In this study we investigate the temperature scaling of extreme precipitation events in the south-eastern Alpine forelands of Austria (SEA) based on a dense rain gauge net of 188 stations, with sub-daily precipitation measurements since about 1990 used at 10-min resolution. Parts of the study region are European hot-spots for severe hailstorms and the region, which is in part densely populated and intensively cultivated, is generally vulnerable to climate extremes. Evidence on historical extremely heavy short-time and localized precipitation events of several hundred mm of rain in just a few hours, resulting in destructive flash flooding, underline these vulnerabilities. Heavy precipitation is driven by Mediterranean moisture advection, enhanced by the orographic lifting at the Alpine foothills, and hence trends in positive sea surface temperature anomalies might carry significant risk of amplifying future extreme precipitation events. In addition, observations from the highly instrumented subregion of south-eastern Styria indicate a strong and robust long-term warming trend in summer of about 0.7°C per decade over 1971-2015, concomitant with a significant increase in the annual number of heat days. The combination of these

  16. Within-season variability of fighting behaviour in an Australian alpine grasshopper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muschett, Giselle; Umbers, Kate D L; Herberstein, Marie E

    2017-01-01

    Throughout the breeding season, changing environmental and biological conditions can lead to variation in the reproductive landscape of many species. In alpine environments temperature is a key driver of behaviour for small ectotherms such as insects, but variable biotic factors such as mate quality and availability can also influence behaviour. Kosicuscola tristis is a small semelparous grasshopper of the Australian alpine region. In a rare behaviour among grasshoppers, K. tristis males engage in vigorous fights over access to females, involving mandible displays, kicking, biting and grappling. In this study we describe the variation in fighting behaviour of K. tristis throughout the breeding season and test several hypotheses related to temperature, body size, mating behaviour, and female quality. We show that K. tristis males are more aggressive toward each other at the end of the breeding season than at the beginning. This increased aggression is associated with decreased daily average temperatures (from ~20°C to ~9°C), decreased mating activity, increased female fecundity, and an unexpected trend toward an increase in female-to-male aggression. These results suggest that K. tristis is likely under increased selective pressure to time key life cycle events with favourable biological and climatic conditions. The stochastic nature of alpine environments combined with a relatively short life span and breeding season, as well as limited mating opportunities toward the end of the season may have contributed to the evolution of this extraordinary mating system.

  17. Transport of nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and ozone to the Alpine Global Atmosphere Watch stations Jungfraujoch (Switzerland), Zugspitze and Hohenpeissenberg (Germany), Sonnblick (Austria) and Mt. Krvavec (Slovenia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaiser, August; Scheifinger, Helfried; Spangl, Wolfgang; Weiss, Andrea; Gilge, Stefan; Fricke, Wolfgang; Ries, Ludwig; Cemas, Danijel; Jesenovec, Brigita

    The Alpine stations Zugspitze, Hohenpeissenberg, Sonnblick, Jungfraujoch and Mt. Krvavec contribute to the Global Atmosphere Watch Programme (GAW) of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The aim of GAW is the surveillance of the large-scale chemical composition of the atmosphere. Thus, the detection of air pollutant transport from regional sources is of particular interest. In this paper, the origin of NO x (measured with a photo-converter), CO and O 3 at the four Alpine GAW stations is studied by trajectory residence time statistics. Although these methods originated during the early 1980s, no comprehensive study of different atmospheric trace gases measured simultaneously at several background observatories in the Alps was conducted up to present. The main NO x source regions detected by the trajectory statistics are the northwest of Europe and the region covering East Germany, Czech Republic and southeast Poland, whereas the main CO source areas are the central, north eastern and eastern parts of Europe with some gradient from low to high latitudes. Subsiding air masses from west and southwest are relatively poor in NO x and CO. The statistics for ozone show strong seasonal effects. Near ground air masses are poor in ozone in winter but rich in ozone in summer. The main source for high ozone concentration in winter is air masses that subside from higher elevations, often enhanced by foehn effects at Hohenpeissenberg. During summer, the Mediterranean constitutes an important additional source for high ozone concentrations. Especially during winter, large differences between Hohenpeissenberg and the higher elevated stations are found. Hohenpeissenberg is frequently within the inversion, whereas the higher elevated stations are above the inversion. Jungfraujoch is the only station where the statistics detect an influence of air rich in CO and NO x from the Po Basin.

  18. Towards Automation in Landcover Mapping from LiDAR Data in Alpine Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorninger, Peter; Briese, Christian; Nothegger, Clemens; Klauser, Armin

    2010-05-01

    laser scanning data. Additionally, a vegetation index was derived from the orthophoto. Using a supervised classification approach based on well known testing sites, the following classes could be determined: forest, dwarf-pines, grass land, debris, and bare rock. After a generalization step, we compared the results to two existing topographic landcover maps showing high correlation. However, the method showed several shortcomings in shadowed areas in the orthophoto. Furthermore, a separation of debris and bare rock was only possibly by a slope threshold. To overcome these problems, we investigated another testing site, situated in the alpine region of Lower Austria, Austria. The data was acquired by a Riegl LMS-Q560 FWF laser scanner. In this case we did not use an orthophoto. Instead we considered additional parameters derived from the FWF data. These were a distance corrected amplitude and the pulse width, and, especially in regions with high vegetation, multiple echoes were available. Furthermore, we derived highly robust local tangential planes for each point (Nothegger & Dorninger, 2008). Due to those tangential planes being computed in three-dimensions, the computation of the slope angles, especially in steep regions, becomes more reliable. Additionally, quality parameters provided by the plane estimation were considered for the classification. For example, the local roughness measure indicates vegetation. So it could be demonstrated that point based classification of LiDAR data allows for landcover classification in alpine areas. To achieve reliable results from FE/LE laser scanning data, the integration of image data was necessary. However, this introduced typical shortcomings of geomorphological interpretation in vegetation and shadowed areas. The use of FWF laser scanning allows overcoming these shortcomings and increasing the automation of reliable landcover mapping including the characteristics of alpine geomorphic features. References: C. Nothegger, P

  19. Climate and land-use changes affecting river sediment and brown trout in alpine countries--a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheurer, Karin; Alewell, Christine; Bänninger, Dominik; Burkhardt-Holm, Patricia

    2009-03-01

    that suspended sediments affect the health and behaviour of fish when available in high amounts. Point measurements in large rivers indicate no common lethal threat and suspended sediment is rarely measured continuously in small rivers. However, effects on fish can be expected under environmentally relevant conditions. River bed clogging impairs the reproductive performance of gravel-spawning fish. Overall, higher erosion and increased levels of fine sediment going into rivers are expected in future. Additionally, sediment loads in rivers are suspected to have considerably impaired gravel bed structure and brown trout spawning is impeded. Timing of discharge is put forward and is now more likely to affect brown trout spawning than in previous decades. Reports on riverbed clogging from changes in erosion and fine sediment deposition patterns, caused by climate change and land-use change are rare. This review identifies both a risk of increases in climate erosive forces and fine sediment loads in rivers of alpine countries. Increased river discharge and sediment loads in winter and early spring could be especially harmful for brown trout reproduction and development of young life stages. Recently published studies indicate a decline in trout reproduction from riverbed clogging in many rivers in lowlands and alpine regions. However, the multitude of factors in natural complex ecosystems makes it difficult to address a single causative factor. Further investigations into the consequences of climate change and land-use change on river systems are needed. Small rivers, of high importance for the recruitment of gravel-spawning fish, are often neglected. Studies on river bed clogging are rare and the few existing studies are not comparable. Thus, there is a strong need for the development of methods to assess sediment input and river bed clogging. As well, studies on the effects to fish from suspended sediments and consequences of gravel beds clogging under natural conditions

  20. Beam test results of CMS RPCs at high eta region under high-radiation environment

    CERN Document Server

    Park, S; Bahk, S Y; Hong, B; Hong, S J; Kang, D H; Kang, T I; Kim, T J; Kim, Y J; Kim, Y U; Koo, D G; Lee, H W; Lee, K S; Lee, S J; Lim, J K; Moon, D H; Nam, S K; Oh, J K; Park, W J; Rhee, J T; Ryu, M S; Shim, H H; Sim, K S

    2004-01-01

    The Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) forward resistivity plate chambers (RPCs) at the high eta region must be operated in presence of a radiation-induced rate as high as 1 kHz/cm**2. It is still unknown if the RPCs coated with linseed oil can be operated under such a high- radiation environment over the lifetime of CMS. Non-oiled RPCs may be one of the options since phenolic or melamine-coated bakelite is chemically stabler than linseed oil. We have constructed oiled and non-oiled RPCs at the high eta region of CMS using phenolic bakelite and tested them in the Gamma Irradiation Facility at CERN. While both RPCs show the same characteristics in the efficiency and the strip multiplicity, the non-oiled RPC generates an intrinsic noise rate of 50 Hz/cm**2, compared to only 5 Hz/cm**2 for the oiled RPC, both at 10.0kV which is about 100 V above the 95% knee of the efficiency curve.

  1. Beam test results of CMS RPCs at high eta region under high-radiation environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, S.; Ahn, S.H.; Bahk, S.Y.; Hong, B.; Hong, S.J.; Kang, D.H.; Kang, T.I.; Kim, T.J.; Kim, Y.J.; Kim, Y.U.; Koo, D.G.; Lee, H.W.; Lee, K.S.; Lee, S.J.; Lim, J.K.; Moon, D.H.; Nam, S.K.; Oh, J.K.; Park, W.J.; Rhee, J.T.; Ryu, M.S.; Shim, H.H.; Sim, K.S.

    2004-01-01

    The Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) forward resistivity plate chambers (RPCs) at the high eta region must be operated in presence of a radiation-induced rate as high as 1kHz/cm2. It is still unknown if the RPCs coated with linseed oil can be operated under such a high-radiation environment over the lifetime of CMS. Non-oiled RPCs may be one of the options since phenolic or melamine-coated bakelite is chemically stabler than linseed oil. We have constructed oiled and non-oiled RPCs at the high eta region of CMS using phenolic bakelite and tested them in the Gamma Irradiation Facility at CERN. While both RPCs show the same characteristics in the efficiency and the strip multiplicity, the non-oiled RPC generates an intrinsic noise rate of 50Hz/cm2, compared to only 5Hz/cm2 for the oiled RPC, both at 10.0kV which is about 100V above the 95% knee of the efficiency curve

  2. Can We Model the Scenic Beauty of an Alpine Landscape?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erich Tasser

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available During the last decade, agriculture has lost its importance in many European mountain regions and tourism, which benefits from attractive landscapes, has become a major source of income. Changes in landscape patterns and elements might affect scenic beauty and therefore the socio-economic welfare of a region. Our study aimed at modeling scenic beauty by quantifying the influence of landscape elements and patterns in relationship to distance. Focusing on Alpine landscapes in South and North Tyrol, we used a photographic questionnaire showing different landscape compositions. As mountain landscapes offer long vistas, we related scenic beauty to different distance zones. Our results indicate that the near zone contributes by 64% to the valuation of scenic beauty, the middle zone by 22%, and the far zone by 14%. In contrast to artificial elements, naturalness and diversity increased scenic beauty. Significant differences between different social groups (origin, age, gender, cultural background occurred only between the local population and tourists regarding great landscape changes. Changes towards more homogenous landscapes were perceived negatively, thus political decision makers should support the conservation of the cultural landscape.

  3. Anterior cruciate ligament injury/reinjury in alpine ski racing: a narrative review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordan MJ

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Matthew J Jordan,1 Per Aagaard,2 Walter Herzog1 1Human Performance Laboratory, The University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada; 2Department of Sports Science and Clinical Biomechanics, SDU Muscle Research Cluster (SMRC, University of Southern Denmark, Odense M, Denmark Abstract: The purpose of the present review was to: 1 provide an overview of the current understanding on the epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and prevention methods for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL injury in alpine ski racing; and 2 provide an overview of what is known pertaining to ACL reinjury and return to sport after ACL injury in alpine ski racing. Given that most of the scientific studies on ACL injuries in alpine ski racing have been descriptive, and that very few studies contributed higher level scientific evidence, a nonsystematic narrative review was employed. Three scholarly databases were searched for articles on ACL injury or knee injury in alpine ski racing. Studies were classified according to their relevance in relation to epidemiology, etiology, risk factors, and return to sport/reinjury prevention. Alpine ski racers (skiers were found to be at high risk for knee injuries, and ACL tears were the most frequent diagnosis. Three primary ACL injury mechanism were identified that involved tibial internal rotation and anteriorly directed shear forces from ski equipment and the environment. While trunk muscle strength imbalance and genetics were found to be predictive of ACL injuries in development-level skiers, there was limited scientific data on ACL injury risk factors among elite skiers. Based on expert opinion, research on injury risk factors should focus on equipment design, course settings/speed, and athlete factors (eg, fitness. While skiers seem to make a successful recovery following ACL injury, there may be persistent neuromuscular deficits. Future research efforts should be directed toward prospective studies on ACL injury/reinjury prevention in both

  4. UV-induced effects on growth, photosynthetic performance and sunscreen contents in different populations of the green alga Klebsormidium fluitans (Streptophyta) from alpine soil crusts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kitzing, C; Pröschold, T; Karsten, U

    2014-02-01

    Members of the green algal genus Klebsormidium (Klebsormidiales, Streptophyta) are typical components of biological soil crust communities worldwide, which exert important ecological functions. Klebsormidium fluitans (F. Gay) Lokhorst was isolated from an aeroterrestrial biofilm as well as from four different biological soil crusts along an elevational gradient between 600 and 2350 m in the Tyrolean and South Tyrolean Alps (Austria, Italy), which are characterised by seasonally high solar radiation. Since the UVtolerance of Klebsormidium has not been studied in detail, an ecophysiological and biochemical study was applied. The effects of controlled artificial ultraviolet radiation (UVR; sampling location. All data indicate a generally high UV tolerance which surely contributes to the aeroterrestrial lifestyle of K. fluitans in soil crusts of the alpine regions of the European Alps.

  5. High-Resolution Regional Phase Attenuation Models of the Iranian Plateau and Surrounding Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-03-03

    crustal structure or sediment thickness across much of the Iranian plateau. The lone exception is the region between the central Zagros and the Lut block...L11303, 2007. Meunier, P., N. Hovius, and J. A. Haines, Topographic site effects and the location of earthquake induced landslides, Earth Planet . Sci

  6. Alpine ski and snowboarding traumatic injuries: incidence, injury patterns, and risk factors for 10 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeth, Paul B; Ball, Chad G; Mulloy, Robert H; Kirkpatrick, Andrew W

    2009-05-01

    Alpine skiing and snowboarding are popular winter sports in Canada. Every year participation in these activities results in traumatic injury. The purpose of this study was to identify the incidence and injury patterns, as well as risk factors associated with ski and snowboarding injuries. A comprehensive 10-year retrospective review of Alpine ski and snowboarding injuries from 1996 to 2006 was conducted. The Alberta Trauma Registry was used as the primary source of data. A total of 196 patients (56.6% skiers, 43.4% snowboarders) were identified as having major traumatic injuries (Injury Severity Score, >or=12). Forty-three patients required intensive care unit support. The majority of injuries were related to falls and collisions with natural objects. Head injuries were most common, followed by chest, spinal, and extremity trauma. Seventy-nine patients required emergency surgery. Skiing and snowboarding represent activities with high potential for traumatic injury. Safety initiatives should be developed to target this population.

  7. The Regional-Matrix Approach to the Training of Highly Qualified Personnel for the Sustainable Development of the Mining Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhernov, Evgeny; Nehoda, Evgenia

    2017-11-01

    The state, regional and industry approaches to the problem of personnel training for building an innovative knowledge economy at all levels that ensures sustainable development of the region are analyzed in the article using the cases of the Kemerovo region and the coal industry. A new regional-matrix approach to the training of highly qualified personnel is proposed, which allows to link the training systems with the regional economic matrix "natural resources - cognitive resources" developed by the author. A special feature of the new approach is the consideration of objective conditions and contradictions of regional systems of personnel training, which have formed as part of economic systems of regions differ-entiated in the matrix. The methodology of the research is based on the statement about the interconnectivity of general and local knowledge, from which the understanding of the need for a combination of regional, indus-try and state approaches to personnel training is derived. A new form of representing such a combination is the proposed approach, which is based on matrix analysis. The results of the research can be implemented in the practice of modernization of professional education of workers in the coal industry of the natural resources extractive region.

  8. Photosynthesis and photosynthetic electron flow in the alpine evergreen species Quercus guyavifolia in winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Huang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Alpine evergreen broadleaf tree species must regularly cope with low night temperatures in winter. However, the effects of low night temperatures on photosynthesis in alpine evergreen broadleaf tree species are unclear. We measured the diurnal photosynthetic parameters before and after cold snap for leaves of Quercus guyavifolia growing in its native habitat at 3290 m. On 11 and 12 December 2013 (before cold snap, stomatal and mesophyll conductances (gs and gm, CO2 assimilation rate (An, and total electron flow through PSII (JPSII at daytime were maintained at high levels. The major action of alternative electron flow was to provide extra ATP for primary metabolisms. On 20 December 2013 (after cold snap, the diurnal values of gs, gm, An and JPSII at daytime largely decreased, mainly due to the large decrease in night air temperature. Meanwhile, the ratio of photorespiration and alternative electron flow to JPSII largely increased on 20 December. Furthermore, the high levels of alternative electron flow were accompanied with low rates of extra ATP production. A quantitative limitation analysis reveals that the gm limitation increased on 20 December with decreased night air temperature. Therefore, the night air temperature was an important determinant of stomatal/mesophyll conductance and photosynthesis. When photosynthesis is inhibited following freezing night temperatures, photorespiration and alternative electron flow are important electron sinks, which support the role of photorespiration and alternative electron flow in photoportection for alpine plants under low temperatures.

  9. Seedling Regeneration in the Alpine Treeline Ecotone: Comparison of Wood Microsites and Adjacent Soil Substrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adelaide Chapman Johnson

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Although climate warming is generally expected to facilitate upward advance of forests, conifer seedling regeneration and survival may be hindered by low substrate moisture, high radiation, and both low and high snow accumulation. To better understand substrate-related factors promoting regeneration in the alpine treeline ecotone, this study compared 2 substrates supporting conifer seedlings: rotten downed wood and adjacent soil. Study locations, each with 3 levels of incoming radiation, were randomly selected at forest line–alpine meadow borders in Pacific Northwest wilderness areas extending along an east–west precipitation gradient. Associations among substrate type, seedling density, radiation, site moisture, site temperature, plant water potential, and plant stomatal conductance were assessed. Wood microsites, flush with the ground and supporting Abies spp conifer seedlings, extended up to 20 m into alpine meadows from the forest line. Although wood microsites thawed later in the spring and froze earlier in the fall, they had warmer summer temperatures, greater volumetric water content, and more growing degree hours, and seedlings growing on wood had higher water potentials than seedlings growing on adjacent soil. At drier eastern sites, there was a positive relationship between seedling density and volumetric water content. Further, there was a positive relationship between seedling stomatal conductance and volumetric water content. Our study indicates that in the Pacific Northwest. and likely elsewhere, seedlings benefit from wood microsites, which provide greater water content. Given predictions of increased summer drought in some locations globally, wood microsites at forest line–alpine meadows and forest line–grasslands borders may become increasingly important for successful conifer regeneration.

  10. The relationship between soil physical properties and alpine plant diversity on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Tang

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Through a large-scale research, we examined the heterogeneity of soil properties and plant diversity, as well as their relationships across alpine grassland types on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The soil pH and EC value increased with the constant deepening of the soil in all the three alpine grassland types which in order of absolute value in every soil layer were alpine desert steppe, alpine steppe and alpine meadow. Among the three grassland types, the alpine meadow possessed the highest SM but the lowest SBD. For plant diversity, alpine meadow was the highest, alpine desert steppe ranked the second and alpine steppe was the last. SM and SBD were the highest influential soil physical properties to species richness, but with opposite effects.

  11. Trial of accelerator cells machining with high precision and high efficiency at Okayama region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoshikawa, Mitsuo; Yoden, Hiroyuki; Yokomizo, Seiichi; Sumida, Tsuneto; Kunishida, Jun; Oshita, Isao

    2005-01-01

    In the framework of the project 'Promotion of Science and Technology in Regional Areas' by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, we have prepared a special apparatus for machining accelerator cells with a high precision and a high efficiency for the future linear collider. A machining with as small an error as 2 micrometers has been realized. Necessary time to finish one accelerator cell is reduced from 128 minutes to 34 minutes due to the suppression of the heating of the object at the machining. If newly developed one chuck method was employed, the precision and efficiency would be further improved. By cutting at both sides of the spindle, the necessary time for machining would be reduced by half. (author)

  12. High Regional Variation in Urethroplasty in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figler, Bradley D.; Gore, John L.; Holt, Sarah K.; Voelzke, Bryan B.; Wessells, Hunter

    2015-01-01

    Purpose We identified clinical and regional factors associated with the use of urethroplasty vs repeat endoscopic management for urethral stricture disease. Materials and Methods We analyzed claims for patients 18 to 65 years old in the 2007 to 2011 MarketScan ® Commercial Claims and Encounters Database with a diagnosis of urethral stricture. The primary outcome was treatment with urethroplasty vs repeat endoscopic management, defined as more than 2 dilations or direct vision internal urethrotomies. The likelihood of urethroplasty vs repeat endoscopic management was determined for each major metropolitan area in the United States. Multivariate logistic regression was done to identify factors associated with urethroplasty. Results We identified 41,056 patients with urethral stricture, yielding a diagnosis rate of 296/100,000 men in MarketScan. Repeat endoscopic management and urethroplasty were performed in 2,700 and 1,444 patients, respectively. Compared to patients treated with repeat endoscopic management those with urethroplasty were younger (median age 44 vs 54 years) and more likely to have a Charlson comorbidity score of 0 (84% vs 77%), have traveled out of a metropolitan area for care (34% vs 17%) and have a reconstructive urologist in the treatment metropolitan area (76% and 62%, each p urethroplasty vs repeat endoscopic management. Conclusions Despite the well established benefits of urethroplasty compared to repeat endoscopic management a strong bias for repeat endoscopic management exists in many regions in the United States. PMID:25072180

  13. Alpine Fault, New Zealand, SRTM Shaded Relief and Colored Height

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-01-01

    The Alpine fault runs parallel to, and just inland of, much of the west coast of New Zealand's South Island. This view was created from the near-global digital elevation model produced by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) and is almost 500 kilometers (just over 300 miles) wide. Northwest is toward the top. The fault is extremely distinct in the topographic pattern, nearly slicing this scene in half lengthwise. In a regional context, the Alpine fault is part of a system of faults that connects a west dipping subduction zone to the northeast with an east dipping subduction zone to the southwest, both of which occur along the juncture of the Indo-Australian and Pacific tectonic plates. Thus, the fault itself constitutes the major surface manifestation of the plate boundary here. Offsets of streams and ridges evident in the field, and in this view of SRTM data, indicate right-lateral fault motion. But convergence also occurs across the fault, and this causes the continued uplift of the Southern Alps, New Zealand's largest mountain range, along the southeast side of the fault. Two visualization methods were combined to produce this image: shading and color coding of topographic height. The shade image was derived by computing topographic slope in the northwest-southeast (image top to bottom) direction, so that northwest slopes appear bright and southeast slopes appear dark. Color coding is directly related to topographic height, with green at the lower elevations, rising through yellow and tan, to white at the highest elevations. Elevation data used in this image were acquired by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, launched on Feb. 11, 2000. SRTM used the same radar instrument that comprised the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR) that flew twice on the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 1994. SRTM was designed to collect 3-D measurements of the Earth's surface. To collect the 3-D data

  14. Geomorphic controls on Pleistocene knickpoint migration in Alpine valleys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leith, Kerry; Fox, Matt; Moore, Jeffrey R.; Brosda, Julian; Krautblatter, Michael; Loew, Simon

    2014-05-01

    Recent insights into sub-glacial bedrock stress conditions suggest that the erosional efficiency of glaciers may reduce markedly following a major erosional cycle [Leith et al., 2013]. This implies that the formation of large glacial valleys within the Alps is likely to have occurred shortly after the onset of 100 ky glacial-interglacial cycles (at the mid-Pleistocene Revolution (MPR)). The majority of landscape change since this time may have therefore been driven by sub-aerial processes. This hypothesis is supported by observations of hillslope and channel morphology within Canton Valais (Switzerland), where major tributary valleys display a common morphology along their length, hinting at a shared geomorphic history. Glaciers currently occupy the headwaters of many catchments, while the upper reaches of rivers flow across extensive alluvial planes before abruptly transitioning to steep channels consisting of mixed bedrock and talus fan deposits. The rivers then converge to flow out over the alluvial plane of the Rhone Valley. Characteristically rough topographies within the region are suggested to mark the progressive transition from a glacial to fluvially-dominated landscape, and correlate well with steepened river channel sections determined from a 2.5 m resolution LiDAR DEM. We envisage a landscape in which ongoing tectonic uplift drives the emergence of Alpine bedrock through massive sedimentary valley infills (currently concentrated in the Rhone Valley), whose elevation is fixed by the consistent fluvial baselevel at Lake Geneva. As fluvial incision ceases at the onset of glaciation, continued uplift causes the formation of knickpoints at the former transition from bedrock to sedimentary infill. These knickpoints will then propagate upstream during subsequent interglacial periods. By investigating channel morphologies using an approach based on the steady-state form of the stream power equation, we can correlate steepened channel reaches (degraded

  15. The evolution of dwarf shrubs in alpine environments: a case study of Alchemilla in Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehrke, Berit; Kandziora, Martha; Pirie, Michael D

    2016-01-01

    Alpine and arctic environments worldwide, including high mountains, are dominated by short-stature woody plants (dwarf shrubs). This conspicuous life form asserts considerable influence on local environmental conditions above the treeline, creating its own microhabitat. This study reconstructs the evolution of dwarf shrubs in Alchemilla in the African tropical alpine environment, where they represent one of the largest clades and are among the most common and abundant plants. Different phylogenetic inference methods were used with plastid and nuclear DNA sequence markers, molecular dating (BEAST and RelTime), analyses of diversification rate shifts (MEDUSA and BAMM) and ancestral character and area reconstructions (Mesquite). It is inferred that African Alchemilla species originated following long-distance dispersal to tropical East Africa, but that the evolution of dwarf shrubs occurred in Ethiopia and in tropical East Africa independently. Establishing a timeframe is challenging given inconsistencies in age estimates, but it seems likely that they originated in the Pleistocene, or at the earliest in the late Miocene. The adaptation to alpine-like environments in the form of dwarf shrubs has apparently not led to enhanced diversification rates. Ancestral reconstructions indicate reversals in Alchemilla from plants with a woody base to entirely herbaceous forms, a transition that is rarely reported in angiosperms. Alchemilla is a clear example of in situ tropical alpine speciation. The dwarf shrub life form typical of African Alchemilla has evolved twice independently, further indicating its selective advantage in these harsh environments. However, it has not influenced diversification, which, although recent, was not rapid. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Estimation of Biomass Dynamics in Alpine Treeline Ecotone using Airborne Lidar and Repeat Photography

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCaffrey, D. R.; Hopkinson, C.

    2016-12-01

    Historic photographs provide visual records of landscapes which pre-date aerial and satellite observations, but analysis of these photographs has largely been qualitative due to varying spatial scale within an oblique image. Recent technological advances, such as the WSL monoplotting tool, provide the ability to georeference single oblique images, allowing for quantitative spatial analysis of land cover change between historic photographs and contemporary repeat photographs. The WSL monoplotting tool was used to compare alpine land cover change between 12 photographs from a 1914 survey of the West Castle valley (Alberta, Canada; 49.3° N, 114.4° W) and 12 repeat photographs, collected in 2006 by the Mountain Legacy Project. We tested for correlations between land cover shifts over the 92 year observation period and geomorphic controls (e.g. elevation, slope, aspect), with a focus on vegetative change in the alpine treeline ecotone (ATE). A model of above ground biomass was generated using an airborne lidar observation of the valley (2014) and ground validated measurements of tree height, diameter at breast height, and leaf area index from 25 plots (400 m2). By creating a high resolution map of ATE dynamics over a 92 year interval and incorporating a model of above ground biomass, the relative magnitude of anthropogenic, orographic, and climatic controls on ATE can be explored. This research provides a unique opportunity to understand the impact that continued atmospheric warming could have on vegetative boundaries in sensitive alpine systems, such as the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains.

  17. Warming-induced upward migration of the alpine treeline in the Changbai Mountains, northeast China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Haibo; Liu, Jie; Li, Mai-He; Büntgen, Ulf; Yang, Yue; Wang, Lei; Wu, Zhengfang; He, Hong S

    2018-03-01

    Treeline responses to environmental changes describe an important phenomenon in global change research. Often conflicting results and generally too short observations are, however, still challenging our understanding of climate-induced treeline dynamics. Here, we use a state-of-the-art dendroecological approach to reconstruct long-term changes in the position of the alpine treeline in relation to air temperature at two sides in the Changbai Mountains in northeast China. Over the past 160 years, the treeline increased by around 80 m, a process that can be divided into three phases of different rates and drives. The first phase was mainly influenced by vegetation recovery after an eruption of the Tianchi volcano in 1702. The slowly upward shift in the second phase was consistent with the slowly increasing temperature. The last phase coincided with rapid warming since 1985, and shows with 33 m per 1°C, the most intense upward shift. The spatial distribution and age structure of trees beyond the current treeline confirm the latest, warming-induced upward shift. Our results suggest that the alpine treeline will continue to rise, and that the alpine tundra may disappear if temperatures will increase further. This study not only enhances mechanistic understanding of long-term treeline dynamics, but also highlights the effects of rising temperatures on high-elevation vegetation dynamics. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. A new approach for surveying the Alpine Salamander (Salamandra atra in Austria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ursula Reinthaler-Lottermoser

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The Alpine Salamander is a small pitch black amphibian which is endemic to the European Alps and the Dinarides. It is strictly protected according to the European FFH guidelines. Despite its central role in the alpine ecosystem our actual published record in Austria is small. In order to resolve this shortcoming our project explores its distribution in Austria. It uses a participatory and community based approach to gather data. Everybody can enter and look at Alpine Salamander observations on our website www.alpensalamander.eu. This approach also allows us to establish an “oral history” of Salamander observations in the past 50 years by conducting interviews in the local community. Since July 2009 the website and salamander report database are online. From the actual data (more than 5600 records we already obtained an overview about the present distribution and data quality. The data are an excellent basis for detailed scientific studies on these remarkable amphibians. With this new and highly interactive approach science and education are combined to initiate protection measures with the public.

  19. Seasonal inorganic nitrogen release in alpine lakes on the Colorado western slope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inyan, B.I.; Williams, M.W.; Tonnessen, K.; Turk, J.T.; Campbell, D.H.

    1998-01-01

    In the Rocky Mountains, the association of increases in acidic deposition with increased atmospheric loading of sulfate and direct changes in surface water chemistry has been well established. The importance, though, of increased nitrogen (N) deposition in the episodic acidification of alpine lakes and N saturation in alpine ecosystems is only beginning to be documented. In alpine areas of the Colorado Front Range, modest loadings of N in deposition have been associated with leakage of N to surface waters. On the Colorado western slope, however, no leakage of N to surface waters has been reported. A 1995 study that included early season under-ice water samples that were not available in earlier studies showed that there is, in fact, N leakage to surface waters in some western slope basins. Under-ice nitrate (NO3-) concentrations were as high as 10.5 ??q L-1, and only decreased to detection limits in September. Landscape type appears to be important in leakage of N to surface waters, which is associated with basins having steep slopes, thin soils, and large amounts of exposed bedrock. NO3- leakage compounds the existing sensitivity to episodic acidification from low acid neutralizing capacity (ANC), which is less than 40 ??eq L-1 in those basins.

  20. Modeling anthropogenic and natural fire ignitions in an inner-alpine valley

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Vacchiano

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Modeling and assessing the factors that drive forest fire ignitions is critical for fire prevention and sustainable ecosystem management. In southern Europe, the anthropogenic component of wildland fire ignitions is especially relevant. In the Alps, however, the role of fire as a component of disturbance regimes in forest and grassland ecosystems is poorly known. The aim of this work is to model the probability of fire ignition for an Alpine region in Italy using a regional wildfire archive (1995–2009 and MaxEnt modeling. We analyzed separately (i winter forest fires, (ii winter fires on grasslands and fallow land, and (iii summer fires. Predictors were related to morphology, climate, and land use; distance from infrastructures, number of farms, and number of grazing animals were used as proxies for the anthropogenic component. Collinearity among predictors was reduced by a principal component analysis. Regarding ignitions, 30 % occurred in agricultural areas and 24 % in forests. Ignitions peaked in the late winter–early spring. Negligence from agrosilvicultural activities was the main cause of ignition (64 %; lightning accounted for 9 % of causes across the study time frame, but increased from 6 to 10 % between the first and second period of analysis. Models for all groups of fire had a high goodness of fit (AUC 0.90–0.95. Temperature was proportional to the probability of ignition, and precipitation was inversely proportional. Proximity from infrastructures had an effect only on winter fires, while the density of grazing animals had a remarkably different effect on summer (positive correlation and winter (negative fires. Implications are discussed regarding climate change, fire regime changes, and silvicultural prevention. Such a spatially explicit approach allows us to carry out spatially targeted fire management strategies and may assist in developing better fire management plans.

  1. Modeling anthropogenic and natural fire ignitions in an inner-alpine valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vacchiano, Giorgio; Foderi, Cristiano; Berretti, Roberta; Marchi, Enrico; Motta, Renzo

    2018-03-01

    Modeling and assessing the factors that drive forest fire ignitions is critical for fire prevention and sustainable ecosystem management. In southern Europe, the anthropogenic component of wildland fire ignitions is especially relevant. In the Alps, however, the role of fire as a component of disturbance regimes in forest and grassland ecosystems is poorly known. The aim of this work is to model the probability of fire ignition for an Alpine region in Italy using a regional wildfire archive (1995-2009) and MaxEnt modeling. We analyzed separately (i) winter forest fires, (ii) winter fires on grasslands and fallow land, and (iii) summer fires. Predictors were related to morphology, climate, and land use; distance from infrastructures, number of farms, and number of grazing animals were used as proxies for the anthropogenic component. Collinearity among predictors was reduced by a principal component analysis. Regarding ignitions, 30 % occurred in agricultural areas and 24 % in forests. Ignitions peaked in the late winter-early spring. Negligence from agrosilvicultural activities was the main cause of ignition (64 %); lightning accounted for 9 % of causes across the study time frame, but increased from 6 to 10 % between the first and second period of analysis. Models for all groups of fire had a high goodness of fit (AUC 0.90-0.95). Temperature was proportional to the probability of ignition, and precipitation was inversely proportional. Proximity from infrastructures had an effect only on winter fires, while the density of grazing animals had a remarkably different effect on summer (positive correlation) and winter (negative) fires. Implications are discussed regarding climate change, fire regime changes, and silvicultural prevention. Such a spatially explicit approach allows us to carry out spatially targeted fire management strategies and may assist in developing better fire management plans.

  2. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - GIS analysis Franches Montagnes, Switzerland - Documentation of GIS concepts, methods and results

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daellenbach, F.; Schaffner, B. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents part of the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The series of reports describes the development and use of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. This report documents the use of the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) methodology for the 'Franches Montagnes' Region in Switzerland, whereby the most significant of the model's layers was found to be the wind velocity layer.

  3. Analysis of streamflow variability in Alpine catchments at multiple spatial and temporal scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez Ciria, T.; Chiogna, G.

    2017-12-01

    Alpine watersheds play a pivotal role in Europe for water provisioning and for hydropower production. In these catchments, temporal fluctuations of river discharge occur at multiple temporal scales due to natural as well as anthropogenic driving forces. In the last decades, modifications of the flow regime have been observed and their origin lies in the complex interplay between construction of dams for hydro power production, changes in water management policies and climatic changes. The alteration of the natural flow has negative impacts on the freshwater biodiversity and threatens the ecosystem integrity of the Alpine region. Therefore, understanding the temporal and spatial variability of river discharge has recently become a particular concern for environmental protection and represents a crucial contribution to achieve sustainable water resources management in the Alps. In this work, time series analysis is conducted for selected gauging stations in the Inn and the Adige catchments, which cover a large part of the central and eastern region of the Alps. We analyze the available time series using the continuous wavelet transform and change-point analyses for determining how and where changes have taken place. Although both catchments belong to different climatic zones of the Greater Alpine Region, streamflow properties share some similar characteristics. The comparison of the collected streamflow time series in the two catchments permits detecting gradients in the hydrological system dynamics that depend on station elevation, longitudinal location in the Alps and catchment area. This work evidences that human activities (e.g., water management practices and flood protection measures, changes in legislation and market regulation) have major impacts on streamflow and should be rigorously considered in hydrological models.

  4. SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF HIGHLY TOURISTIC REGION OF ISTRIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jasmina GRZINIC

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available As the scale of tourism grows, the resource use threatens to become unsustainable. Withought environmental responsibility the levels of cheaper mass tourism will increase, forcing more “nature-based” tourism to move on to new destinations. This scenario is opposite to the “Croatian Tourism Development by 2010” strategy. With a favourable geographic position, almost at the heart of Europe, Istria has always represented a bridge connecting the Middle European continental area with the Mediterranean. This area is the most visited Croatian tourist region with 27% of all visitors and 35% of time spent in all of Croatia. The Croatian National Bank’s preliminary figures for 2007 show that international tourism generated 18.4% of Croatian GDP. For these reasons the Istrian tourism industry can not ignore environmental issues in its management and requires the informed participation of all relevant stakeholders (according to the Agenda 21 for tourism industry. Properly planned tourism development, combined with environmental protection, produces the concept of sustainable tourism. Environmentally sustainable form of tourism represents a step forward from "sea and sun" mass tourism developed at the coastal part of Istria. There are a myriad of definitions for Sustainable Tourism, including eco-tourism, green travel, environmentally and culturally responsible tourism, fair trade and ethical travel. Mentioned selective tourism forms are adopted as the concept of the present and future Istrian destination development.

  5. Health effects in residents of regions with high background radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanson, G.P.

    1984-01-01

    Possible health problems created by high natural levels of background radiation are hard to detect, partly because the health problems involved would exist to some degree irrespective of radiation exposure, partly because other factors affect the incidence of such problems, and partly because the differences between normal background radiation levels and radiation levels found in most high-radiation areas are not extreme. Nevertheless, the need to know about such health effects is evident, and so various studies conducted over the past 30 years have sought to determine whether those effects exist and what they are. Overall, however, the fragmentary and uncertain nature of many of these findings makes it hard to draw firm conclusions about the health risks involved or the desirability of countermeasures. So despite considerable efforts and some progress over the past three decades, the need for a clear quantitative assessment of the consequences is as great as ever

  6. High-risk regions and outbreak modelling of tularemia in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desvars-Larrive, A; Liu, X; Hjertqvist, M; Sjöstedt, A; Johansson, A; Rydén, P

    2017-02-01

    Sweden reports large and variable numbers of human tularemia cases, but the high-risk regions are anecdotally defined and factors explaining annual variations are poorly understood. Here, high-risk regions were identified by spatial cluster analysis on disease surveillance data for 1984-2012. Negative binomial regression with five previously validated predictors (including predicted mosquito abundance and predictors based on local weather data) was used to model the annual number of tularemia cases within the high-risk regions. Seven high-risk regions were identified with annual incidences of 3·8-44 cases/100 000 inhabitants, accounting for 56·4% of the tularemia cases but only 9·3% of Sweden's population. For all high-risk regions, most cases occurred between July and September. The regression models explained the annual variation of tularemia cases within most high-risk regions and discriminated between years with and without outbreaks. In conclusion, tularemia in Sweden is concentrated in a few high-risk regions and shows high annual and seasonal variations. We present reproducible methods for identifying tularemia high-risk regions and modelling tularemia cases within these regions. The results may help health authorities to target populations at risk and lay the foundation for developing an early warning system for outbreaks.

  7. Temperature signal in suspended sediment export from an Alpine catchment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Costa

    2018-01-01

    concentration through hillslope erosion by rainfall on snow-free surfaces, and increased meltwater production on snow-free glacier surfaces. Despite the rise in air temperature, changes in mean discharge in the mid-1980s were not statistically significant, and their interpretation is complicated by hydropower reservoir management and the flushing operations at intakes. Overall, the results show that to explain changes in suspended sediment transport from large Alpine catchments it is necessary to include an understanding of the multitude of sediment sources involved together with the hydroclimatic conditioning of their activation (e.g. changes in precipitation, runoff, air temperature. In addition, this study points out that climate signals in suspended sediment dynamics may be visible even in highly regulated and human-impacted systems. This is particularly relevant for quantifying climate change and hydropower impacts on streamflow and sediment budgets in Alpine catchments.

  8. Health effects in residents of high background radiation regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanson, G.P.; Komarov, E.

    1983-01-01

    Studies carried out in various countries and by the World Health Organization on health effects of exposure of populations to high levels of natural background radiation result in observations of different significance. There are indications of changes in chromosome aberration rate; Down's syndrome has been observed to be possibly related to radiation exposure; malignant neoplasms in bone apparently correspond to high concentrations of 226 Ra in drinking water. Although various researchers have looked for them, effects have not been demonstrated regarding cancer mortality (other than malignant neoplasms involving bone), gross congenital abnormalities, fertility index, growth and development, hereditary disease (other than the possibility of Down's syndrome), infant mortality, longevity, multiple births, sex ratio, or spontaneous abortion rate. On the basis of reported data clear quantitative conception of the risk of low-level radiation from natural sources could not be developed and feasibility studies of further epidemiological programmes should be organized. The possibility of reducing the collective population dose from natural sources could be further explored and a basis for necessary legal action on establishment of standards for possible sources of natural radiation, such as building materials, fertilizers, natural gas and water, might be developed. (author)

  9. Investigation of climate change impact on water resources for an Alpine basin in northern Italy: implications for evapotranspiration modeling complexity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Ravazzani

    Full Text Available Assessing the future effects of climate change on water availability requires an understanding of how precipitation and evapotranspiration rates will respond to changes in atmospheric forcing. Use of simplified hydrological models is required because of lack of meteorological forcings with the high space and time resolutions required to model hydrological processes in mountains river basins, and the necessity of reducing the computational costs. The main objective of this study was to quantify the differences between a simplified hydrological model, which uses only precipitation and temperature to compute the hydrological balance when simulating the impact of climate change, and an enhanced version of the model, which solves the energy balance to compute the actual evapotranspiration. For the meteorological forcing of future scenario, at-site bias-corrected time series based on two regional climate models were used. A quantile-based error-correction approach was used to downscale the regional climate model simulations to a point scale and to reduce its error characteristics. The study shows that a simple temperature-based approach for computing the evapotranspiration is sufficiently accurate for performing hydrological impact investigations of climate change for the Alpine river basin which was studied.

  10. Investigation of climate change impact on water resources for an Alpine basin in northern Italy: implications for evapotranspiration modeling complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravazzani, Giovanni; Ghilardi, Matteo; Mendlik, Thomas; Gobiet, Andreas; Corbari, Chiara; Mancini, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Assessing the future effects of climate change on water availability requires an understanding of how precipitation and evapotranspiration rates will respond to changes in atmospheric forcing. Use of simplified hydrological models is required because of lack of meteorological forcings with the high space and time resolutions required to model hydrological processes in mountains river basins, and the necessity of reducing the computational costs. The main objective of this study was to quantify the differences between a simplified hydrological model, which uses only precipitation and temperature to compute the hydrological balance when simulating the impact of climate change, and an enhanced version of the model, which solves the energy balance to compute the actual evapotranspiration. For the meteorological forcing of future scenario, at-site bias-corrected time series based on two regional climate models were used. A quantile-based error-correction approach was used to downscale the regional climate model simulations to a point scale and to reduce its error characteristics. The study shows that a simple temperature-based approach for computing the evapotranspiration is sufficiently accurate for performing hydrological impact investigations of climate change for the Alpine river basin which was studied.

  11. Estimating the snowfall limit in alpine and pre-alpine valleys: A local evaluation of operational approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fehlmann, Michael; Gascón, Estíbaliz; Rohrer, Mario; Schwarb, Manfred; Stoffel, Markus

    2018-05-01

    The snowfall limit has important implications for different hazardous processes associated with prolonged or heavy precipitation such as flash floods, rain-on-snow events and freezing precipitation. To increase preparedness and to reduce risk in such situations, early warning systems are frequently used to monitor and predict precipitation events at different temporal and spatial scales. However, in alpine and pre-alpine valleys, the estimation of the snowfall limit remains rather challenging. In this study, we characterize uncertainties related to snowfall limit for different lead times based on local measurements of a vertically pointing micro rain radar (MRR) and a disdrometer in the Zulg valley, Switzerland. Regarding the monitoring, we show that the interpolation of surface temperatures tends to overestimate the altitude of the snowfall limit and can thus lead to highly uncertain estimates of liquid precipitation in the catchment. This bias is much smaller in the Integrated Nowcasting through Comprehensive Analysis (INCA) system, which integrates surface station and remotely sensed data as well as outputs of a numerical weather prediction model. To reduce systematic error, we perform a bias correction based on local MRR measurements and thereby demonstrate the added value of such measurements for the estimation of liquid precipitation in the catchment. Regarding the nowcasting, we show that the INCA system provides good estimates up to 6 h ahead and is thus considered promising for operational hydrological applications. Finally, we explore the medium-range forecasting of precipitation type, especially with respect to rain-on-snow events. We show for a selected case study that the probability for a certain precipitation type in an ensemble-based forecast is more persistent than the respective type in the high-resolution forecast (HRES) of the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasts Integrated Forecasting System (ECMWF IFS). In this case study, the

  12. WEAK LINE QUASARS AT HIGH REDSHIFT: EXTREMELY HIGH ACCRETION RATES OR ANEMIC BROAD-LINE REGIONS?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shemmer, Ohad; Trakhtenbrot, Benny; Netzer, Hagai; Anderson, Scott F.; Brandt, W. N.; Schneider, Donald P.; Diamond-Stanic, Aleksandar M.; Fan Xiaohui; Lira, Paulina; Plotkin, Richard M.; Richards, Gordon T.; Strauss, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    We present Gemini-North K-band spectra of two representative members of the class of high-redshift quasars with exceptionally weak rest-frame ultraviolet emission lines (WLQs), SDSS J114153.34+021924.3 at z = 3.55 and SDSS J123743.08+630144.9 at z = 3.49. In both sources, we detect an unusually weak broad Hβ line and place tight upper limits on the strengths of their [O III] lines. Virial, Hβ-based black hole mass determinations indicate normalized accretion rates of L/L Edd =0.4 for these sources, which is well within the range observed for typical quasars with similar luminosities and redshifts. We also present high-quality XMM-Newton imaging spectroscopy of SDSS J114153.34+021924.3 and find a hard-X-ray photon index of Γ = 1.91 +0.24 -0.22 , which supports the virial L/L Edd determination in this source. Our results suggest that the weakness of the broad emission lines in WLQs is not a consequence of an extreme continuum-emission source but instead due to abnormal broad emission line region properties.

  13. Health effects in residents of high background radiation regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanson, G.P.

    1984-01-01

    Although the health effects of radiation doses in occupationally exposed persons had received attention, it was not until the 1950s, when the atmospheric atom bomb tests of the United States and the Soviet Union had raised the level of environmental radioactivity, that the long-term effects of low-level radiation dosage became a matter of popular concern throughout the world. The United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) was created, and the World Health Organization (WHO) appointed an expert committee to provide advice concerning radiation and human health. In its first report, the WHO expert committee identified several areas of high natural radiation where studies of the exposed population might possibly provide information concerning the effects of chromic low-level radiation dosage

  14. The alpine cushion plant Silene acaulis as foundation species: a bug's-eye view to facilitation and microclimate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivia Molenda

    Full Text Available Alpine ecosystems are important globally with high levels of endemic and rare species. Given that they will be highly impacted by climate change, understanding biotic factors that maintain diversity is critical. Silene acaulis is a common alpine nurse plant shown to positively influence the diversity and abundance of organisms--predominantly other plant species. The hypothesis that cushion or nurse plants in general are important to multiple trophic levels has been proposed but rarely tested. Alpine arthropod diversity is also largely understudied worldwide, and the plant-arthropod interactions reported are mostly negative, that is,. herbivory. Plant and arthropod diversity and abundance were sampled on S. acaulis and at paired adjacent microsites with other non-cushion forming vegetation present on Whistler Mountain, B.C., Canada to examine the relative trophic effects of cushion plants. Plant species richness and abundance but not Simpson's diversity index was higher on cushion microsites relative to other vegetation. Arthropod richness, abundance, and diversity were all higher on cushion microsites relative to other vegetated sites. On a microclimatic scale, S. acaulis ameliorated stressful conditions for plants and invertebrates living inside it, but the highest levels of arthropod diversity were observed on cushions with tall plant growth. Hence, alpine cushion plants can be foundation species not only for other plant species but other trophic levels, and these impacts are expressed through both direct and indirect effects associated with altered environmental conditions and localized productivity. Whilst this case study tests a limited subset of the membership of alpine animal communities, it clearly demonstrates that cushion-forming plant species are an important consideration in understanding resilience to global changes for many organisms in addition to other plants.

  15. Modeling net ecosystem carbon exchange of alpine grasslands with a satellite-driven model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Yan

    Full Text Available Estimate of net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE between the atmosphere and terrestrial ecosystems, the balance of gross primary productivity (GPP and ecosystem respiration (Reco has significant importance for studying the regional and global carbon cycles. Using models driven by satellite data and climatic data is a promising approach to estimate NEE at regional scales. For this purpose, we proposed a semi-empirical model to estimate NEE in this study. In our model, the component GPP was estimated with a light response curve of a rectangular hyperbola. The component Reco was estimated with an exponential function of soil temperature. To test the feasibility of applying our model at regional scales, the temporal variations in the model parameters derived from NEE observations in an alpine grassland ecosystem on Tibetan Plateau were investigated. The results indicated that all the inverted parameters exhibit apparent seasonality, which is in accordance with air temperature and canopy phenology. In addition, all the parameters have significant correlations with the remote sensed vegetation indexes or environment temperature. With parameters estimated with these correlations, the model illustrated fair accuracy both in the validation years and at another alpine grassland ecosystem on Tibetan Plateau. Our results also indicated that the model prediction was less accurate in drought years, implying that soil moisture is an important factor affecting the model performance. Incorporating soil water content into the model would be a critical step for the improvement of the model.

  16. Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Karg, Sabine

    Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands.......Human behaviour towards climatic change during the 4th millennium BC in the Swiss Alpine forelands....

  17. Soft Skills in Health Careers Programs: A Case Study of A Regional Vocational Technical High School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Chong Myung

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to develop an understanding of the ways in which educational experiences might differ between a regional vocational technical high school (RVTH) and short-term career-training programs. A particular regional vocational technical high school was selected for its outstanding academic records and placement rates, and a…

  18. Optimization of the thermal performances of the Alpine Pixel Detector

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Zhan; Di Ciaccio, Lucia

    The ATLAS (A Toroidal LHC ApparatuS) detector is the largest detector of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). One of the most important goals of ATLAS was to search for the missing piece of the Standard Model, the Higgs boson that had been found in 2012. In order to keep looking for the unknowns, it is planned to upgrade the LHC. The High Luminosity LHC (HL-LHC) is a novel configuration of the accelerator, aiming at increasing the luminosity by a factor five or more above the nominal LHC design. In parallel with the accelerator upgrade also the ATLAS will be upgraded to cope with detector aging and to achieve the same or better performance under increased event rate and radiation dose expected at the HL-LHC. This thesis discusses a novel design for the ATLAS Pixel Detector called the "Alpine" layout for the HL-LHC. To support this design, a local support structure is proposed, optimized and tested with an advanced CO2 evaporative cooling system. A numerical program called “CoBra” simulating the twophase heat ...

  19. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - CFD modelling evaluation - Summary of WindSim CFD modelling procedure and validation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Cattin, R. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The report describes the development of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. The report deals with the use of computational fluid dynamics and wind simulation modelling techniques and their validation. Recommendations on the use of the results are made.

  20. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - GIS analysis methodology - Workbook and results

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daellenbach, F.; Schaffner, B. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report presents the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists of the company METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The report describes the development of basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. The report deals with the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) methodology, which includes three steps: the identification of limiting factors for wind power production, the compilation of a GIS layer for each of these factors and, thirdly, their aggregation into a result layer. The methodology was implemented for four case studies in Austria, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland.

  1. Soil microbial responses to climate warming in Northern Andean alpine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallery, R. E.; Lasso, E.

    2017-12-01

    The historically cooler temperatures and waterlogged soils of tropical alpine grasslands (páramo) have resulted in low decomposition rates and a large buildup of organic matter, making páramo one of the most important carbon sinks in tropical biomes. The climatic factors that favored the carbon accumulation are changing, and as a result páramo could play a disproportionate role in driving climate feedbacks through increased carbon released from these large soil carbon stores. Open top chamber warming experiments were established in the Colombian Andes in 2016 to quantify the magnitude of climate change on carbon balance and identify microbial and plant traits that regulate these impacts. Two focal sites differ in mean annual temperature, precipitation, and plant community richness. Heterotrophic respiration (RH,) was measured from soil cores incubated at temperatures representing current and projected warming. The warming effect on RH was sensitive to soil moisture, which could reflect shifts in microbial community composition and/or extracellular enzyme production or efficiency as soils dry. Bacterial, archaeal, and fungal communities in ambient and warmed plots were measured through high-throughput amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA and ITS1 rRNA gene regions. Communities showed strong spatial structuring both within and among páramo, reflecting the topographic heterogeneity of these ecosystems. Significant differences in relative abundance of dominant microbial taxa between páramo could be largely explained by soil bulk density, water holding capacity, and non-vascular plant cover. Phototrophs common to anoxic soils (e.g., Rhodospirillaceae, Hyphomicrobiaceae) were abundant. Taxa within Euryarchaeota were recovered, suggesting methanogenesis potential. Exploration of the magnitude and temperature sensitivity of methane flux is needed in these seasonally anoxic soils whose dynamics could have significant implications for the global climate system.

  2. Estimating Forest Carbon Stock in Alpine and Arctic Ecotones of the Urals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. A. Usoltsev

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports on measured carbon stocks in the forests of two tree line ecotones of the Ural region where climate change might improve growing conditions. The first is an alpine ecotone that is represented by an altitudinal gradient of the spruce-dominated forests on the Western slope of the Tylaiskii Kamen Mountain (Western part of the Konzhakovskii-Tylaiskii-Serebryanskii Mountain system, 59°30′N, 59°00′E, at the alpine timber line that has risen from 864 to 960 m above sea level in the course of the last 100 years. The second is an arctic ecotone in larch-dominated forests at the lower course of the Pur river (67°N, 78°E, at the transition zone between closed floodplain forests and open or island-like communities of upland forests on tundra permafrost. According to our results, there are large differences in the carbon of the aboveground biomass of both ecotones across environmental gradients. In the alpine tree line ecotone, a 19-fold drop of the carbon stocks was detected between the lower and higher altitudinal levels. In the arctic ecotone the aboveground biomass carbon stock of forests of similar densities (1300 to 1700 trees per ha was 7 times as much in the river flood bed, and 5 times as much in mature, dense forests as the low density forests at higher elevations. Twelve regression equations describing dependencies of the aboveground tree biomass (stems, branches, foliage, total aboveground part upon stem diameter of the tree are proposed, which can be used to estimating the biological productivity (carbon of spruce and larch forests on Tylaiskii Kamen Mountain and the lower Pur river and on surrounding areas on the base of traditional forest mensuration have been proposed. In order to reduce the labor intensity of a coming determination of forest biomass the average values of density and dry matter content in the biomass fractions are given that were obtained by taking our sample trees.The results can be useful in

  3. Exome sequencing generates high quality data in non-target regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guo Yan

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Exome sequencing using next-generation sequencing technologies is a cost efficient approach to selectively sequencing coding regions of human genome for detection of disease variants. A significant amount of DNA fragments from the capture process fall outside target regions, and sequence data for positions outside target regions have been mostly ignored after alignment. Result We performed whole exome sequencing on 22 subjects using Agilent SureSelect capture reagent and 6 subjects using Illumina TrueSeq capture reagent. We also downloaded sequencing data for 6 subjects from the 1000 Genomes Project Pilot 3 study. Using these data, we examined the quality of SNPs detected outside target regions by computing consistency rate with genotypes obtained from SNP chips or the Hapmap database, transition-transversion (Ti/Tv ratio, and percentage of SNPs inside dbSNP. For all three platforms, we obtained high-quality SNPs outside target regions, and some far from target regions. In our Agilent SureSelect data, we obtained 84,049 high-quality SNPs outside target regions compared to 65,231 SNPs inside target regions (a 129% increase. For our Illumina TrueSeq data, we obtained 222,171 high-quality SNPs outside target regions compared to 95,818 SNPs inside target regions (a 232% increase. For the data from the 1000 Genomes Project, we obtained 7,139 high-quality SNPs outside target regions compared to 1,548 SNPs inside target regions (a 461% increase. Conclusions These results demonstrate that a significant amount of high quality genotypes outside target regions can be obtained from exome sequencing data. These data should not be ignored in genetic epidemiology studies.

  4. Alpine ski bindings and injuries. Current findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natri, A; Beynnon, B D; Ettlinger, C F; Johnson, R J; Shealy, J E

    1999-07-01

    In spite of the fact that the overall incidence of alpine ski injuries has decreased during the last 25 years, the incidence of serious knee sprains usually involving the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) has risen dramatically since the late 1970s. This trend runs counter to a dramatic reduction in lower leg injuries that began in the early 1970s and to date has lowered the risk of injury below the knee by almost 90%. One of the primary design objectives of modern ski boots and bindings has been to protect the skier from tibia and ankle fractures. So, in that sense, they have done an excellent job. However, despite advances in equipment design, modern ski bindings have not protected the knee from serious ligament trauma. At the present time, we are unaware of any binding design, settings or function that can protect both the knee and lower extremities from serious ligament sprains. No innovative change in binding design appears to be on the horizon that has the potential to reduce the risk of these severe knee injuries. Indeed, only 1 study has demonstrated a means to help reduce this risk of serious knee sprains, and this study involved education of skiers, not ski equipment. Despite the inability of bindings to reduce the risk of severe knee injuries there can be no doubt that improvement in ski bindings has been the most important factor in the marked reduction in incidence of lower leg and ankle injuries during the last 25 years. The authors strongly endorse the application of present International Standards Organisation (ISO) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards concerning mounting, setting and maintaining modern 'state of the art' bindings.

  5. Whole-Body Vibrations Associated With Alpine Skiing: A Risk Factor for Low Back Pain?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matej Supej

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Alpine skiing, both recreational and competitive, is associated with high rates of injury. Numerous studies have shown that occupational exposure to whole-body vibrations is strongly related to lower back pain and some suggest that, in particular, vibrations of lower frequencies could lead to overuse injuries of the back in connection with alpine ski racing. However, it is not yet known which forms of skiing involve stronger vibrations and whether these exceed safety thresholds set by existing standards and directives. Therefore, this study was designed to examine whole-body vibrations connected with different types of skiing and the associated potential risk of developing low back pain. Eight highly skilled ski instructors, all former competitive ski racers and equipped with five accelerometers and a Global Satellite Navigation System to measure vibrations and speed, respectively, performed six different forms of skiing: straight running, plowing, snow-plow swinging, basic swinging, short swinging, and carved turns. To estimate exposure to periodic, random and transient vibrations the power spectrum density (PSD and standard ISO 2631-1:1997 parameters [i.e., the weighted root-mean-square acceleration (RMS, crest factor, maximum transient vibration value and the fourth-power vibration dose value (VDV] were calculated. Ground reaction forces were estimated from data provided by accelerometers attached to the pelvis. The major novel findings were that all of the forms of skiing tested produced whole-body vibrations, with highest PSD values of 1.5–8 Hz. Intensified PSD between 8.5 and 35 Hz was observed only when skidding was involved. The RMS values for 10 min of short swinging or carved turns, as well as all 10-min equivalent VDV values exceeded the limits set by European Directive 2002/44/EC for health and safety. Thus, whole-body vibrations, particularly in connection with high ground reaction forces, contribute to a high risk for low back

  6. Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - Digital relief analysis - Abstract of work package 7; Alpine Windharvest: development of information base regarding potentials and the necessary technical, legal and socio-economic conditions for expanding wind energy in the Alpine Space - Digitale Relief-Analyse - Zusammenfassung von Arbeitspaket 7

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaffner, B.; Cattin, R. [Meteotest, Berne (Switzerland)

    2005-07-01

    This report describes the development work carried out by the Swiss meteorology specialists METEOTEST as part of a project carried out together with the Swiss wind-energy organisation 'Suisse Eole'. The framework for the project is the EU Interreg IIIB Alpine Space Programme, a European Community Initiative Programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The project investigated the use of digital relief-analysis. The series of reports describes the development and use of a basic information system to aid the investigation of the technical, legal and socio-economical conditions for the use of wind energy in the alpine area. This report presents a summary of work done on the digital relief analysis used in various stages of the project, its validation and use.

  7. Atmospheric deposition as a source of carbon and nutrients to barren, alpine soils of the Colorado Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mladenov, N.; Williams, M. W.; Schmidt, S. K.; Cawley, K.

    2012-03-01

    Many alpine areas are experiencing intense deglaciation, biogeochemical changes driven by temperature rise, and changes in atmospheric deposition. There is mounting evidence that the water quality of alpine streams may be related to these changes, including rising atmospheric deposition of carbon (C) and nutrients. Given that barren alpine soils can be severely C limited, we evaluated the magnitude and chemical quality of atmospheric deposition of C and nutrients to an alpine site, the Green Lake 4 catchment in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Using a long term dataset (2002-2010) of weekly atmospheric wet deposition and snowpack chemistry, we found that volume weighted mean dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations were approximately 1.0 mg L-1and weekly concentrations reached peaks as high at 6-10 mg L-1 every summer. Total dissolved nitrogen concentration also peaked in the summer, whereas total dissolved phosphorus and calcium concentrations were highest in the spring. Relationships among DOC concentration, dissolved organic matter (DOM) fluorescence properties, and nitrate and sulfate concentrations suggest that pollutants from nearby urban and agricultural sources and organic aerosols derived from sub-alpine vegetation may influence high summer DOC wet deposition concentrations. Interestingly, high DOC concentrations were also recorded during "dust-in-snow" events in the spring. Detailed chemical and spectroscopic analyses conducted for samples collected in 2010 revealed that the DOM in many late spring and summer samples was less aromatic and polydisperse and of lower molecular weight than that of winter and fall samples and, therefore, likely to be more bioavailable to microbes in barren alpine soils. Bioavailability experiments with different types of atmospheric C sources are needed to better evaluate the substrate quality of atmospheric C inputs. Our C budget estimates for the Green Lake 4 catchment suggest that atmospheric deposition represents an

  8. Atmospheric deposition as a source of carbon and nutrients to an alpine catchment of the Colorado Rocky Mountains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mladenov, N.; Williams, M. W.; Schmidt, S. K.; Cawley, K.

    2012-08-01

    Many alpine areas are experiencing deglaciation, biogeochemical changes driven by temperature rise, and changes in atmospheric deposition. There is mounting evidence that the water quality of alpine streams may be related to these changes, including rising atmospheric deposition of carbon (C) and nutrients. Given that barren alpine soils can be severely C limited, atmospheric deposition sources may be an important source of C and nutrients for these environments. We evaluated the magnitude of atmospheric deposition of C and nutrients to an alpine site, the Green Lake 4 catchment in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Using a long-term dataset (2002-2010) of weekly atmospheric wet deposition and snowpack chemistry, we found that volume weighted mean dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations were 1.12 ± 0.19 mg l-1, and weekly concentrations reached peaks as high at 6-10 mg l-1 every summer. Total dissolved nitrogen concentration also peaked in the summer, whereas total dissolved phosphorus and calcium concentrations were highest in the spring. To investigate potential sources of C in atmospheric deposition, we evaluated the chemical quality of dissolved organic matter (DOM) and relationships between DOM and other solutes in wet deposition. Relationships between DOC concentration, fluorescence, and nitrate and sulfate concentrations suggest that pollutants from nearby urban and agricultural sources and organic aerosols derived from sub-alpine vegetation may influence high summer DOC wet deposition concentrations. Interestingly, high DOC concentrations were also recorded during "dust-in-snow" events in the spring, which may reflect an association of DOM with dust. Detailed chemical and spectroscopic analyses conducted for samples collected in 2010 revealed that the DOM in many late spring and summer samples was less aromatic and polydisperse and of lower molecular weight than that of winter and fall samples. Our C budget estimates for the Green Lake 4 catchment

  9. Importance of water quality on plant abundance and diversity in high-alpine meadows of the Yerba Loca Natural Sanctuary at the Andes of north-central Chile Importancia de la calidad del agua sobre la abundancia y diversidad vegetal en vegas altoandinas del Santuario Natural Yerba Loca en los Andes de Chile centro-norte

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ROSANNA GINOCCHIO

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Porphyry Cu-Mo deposits have influenced surface water quality in high-Andes of north-central Chile since the Miocene. Water anomalies may reduce species abundance and diversity in alpine meadows as acidic and metal-rich waters are highly toxic to plants The study assessed the importance of surface water quality on plant abundance and diversity in high-alpine meadows at the Yerba Loca Natural Santuary (YLNS, central Chile (33°15' S, 70°18' W. Hydrochemical and plant prospecting were carried out on Piedra Carvajal, Chorrillos del Plomo and La Lata meadows the growing seasons of 2006 and 2007. Direct gradient analysis was performed through canonical correspondence analysis (CCA to look for relationships among water chemistry and plant factors. High variability in water chemistry was found inside and among meadows, particularly for pH, sulphate, electric conductivity, hardness, and total dissolved Cu, Zn, Cd, Pb and Fe. Data on species abundance and water chemical factors suggests that pH and total dissolved Cu are very important factor determining changes in plant abundance and diversity in study meadows. For instance, Festuca purpurascens, Colobanthus quitensis, and Arenaria rivularis are abundant in habitals with Cu-rich waters while Festuca magellanica, Patosia clandestina, Plantago barbata, Werneria pygmea, and Erigeron andícola are abundant in habitals with dilute waters.Los megadepósitos de pórfidos de Cu-Mo han influido sobre la calidad de las aguas superficiales en las zonas altoandinas del centro-norte de Chile desde el Mioceno. Estas alteraciones en la calidad de las aguas podrían afectar negativamente a la vegetación presente en las vegas altoandinas, ya que las aguas acidas y ricas en metales son altamente tóxicas para las plantas. En este estudio se evaluó el efecto de la calidad de las aguas en la abundancia y diversidad florística de las vegas altoandinas del Santuario de la Naturaleza Yerba Loca (SNYL, en Chile central (33

  10. Uranium-series dating of fossil bones from alpine caves

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leitner-Wild, E.; Steffan, I.

    1993-01-01

    During the course of an investigation of fossil cave bear populations the uranium-series method for absolute age determination has been applied to bone material. The applicability of the method to bone samples from alpine caves is demonstrated by the concordance of U/Th and U/Pa ages and cross-checks with the radiocarbon method. Stratigraphic agreement between bone ages and carbonate speleothem ages also indicates the potential of the uranium-series method as a suitable tool for the age determination of fossil bones from alpine cave environments. (Author)

  11. Temporal variations of perfluoroalkyl substances and polybrominated diphenyl ethers in alpine snow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kirchgeorg, Torben; Dreyer, Annekatrin; Gabrieli, Jacopo; Kehrwald, Natalie; Sigl, Michael; Schwikowski, Margit

    2013-01-01

    The occurrence and temporal variation of 18 perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) and 8 polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in the European Alps was investigated in a 10 m shallow firn core from Colle Gnifetti in the Monte Rosa Massif (4455 m above sea level). The firn core encompasses the years 1997–2007. Firn core sections were analyzed by liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (PFASs) and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (PBDEs). We detected 12 PFASs and 8 PBDEs in the firn samples. Perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA; 0.3–1.8 ng L −1 ) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA; 0.2–0.6 ng L −1 ) were the major PFASs while BDE 99 ( −1 ) and BDE 47 (n.d.–2.6 ng L −1 ) were the major PBDEs. This study demonstrates the occurrence of PFASs and PBDEs in the European Alps and provides the first evidence that PFASs compositions may be changing to PFBA-dominated compositions. -- Highlights: •PFASs and PBDEs were detected in low ng L −1 concentrations in an Alpine firn core. •BDE 47, BDE 99 and BDE 209 are the dominating PBDEs. •PFOA, PFNA and PFBA are the major PFASs. •We demonstrate a change in the PFASs composition. •Atmospheric degradation of volatile precursor might be the main source for >C8 PFCAs. -- PFAS and PBDE concentrations in European Alpine snow provide information about the occurrence, accumulation and recent changes of these persistent organic pollutants in Alpine regions

  12. Land-use intensification can exaggerate the reduction of functionality with increasing soil biodiversity loss in an alpine meadow on eastern Tibetan Plateau

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Manqiang; Chen, Xiaoyun; Chen, Chenying; Hu, Zhengkun; Guo, Hui; Li, Junyong; Du, Guozhen; Li, Huixin; Hu, Feng

    2017-04-01

    Soil biota plays a pivotal role in ecosystem functionality which is of central importance to sustainable services such as food and fiber production. Intensive land use is associated with species loss and subsequent the related functionality loss. Currently, the claim that negligible effects of soil biodiversity loss due to high functional redundancy has been questioned in the face of intense human activities. Recent studies corroborated that soil biodiversity guaranteed functionality following perturbation. Few studies have, however, attempted to explore the intensive land use on the relationship between soil biodiversity and function particularly for the region susceptible to human perturbation and climate change. With increasing demands for livestock on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, extensive fertilization is a common way to fill the gap of grass productivity in the alpine meadow. However, excess chemical fertilizer can lead to the species loss and functionality degradation. Do the fertilizer-induced changes in soil biota lead to a higher risk of functionality? We predicted that fertilization would exacerbate effects of biodiversity-loss on the reduction of functionality. Herein, a dilution-to-extinction approach was used to set up soil biodiversity loss by inoculating serially diluted soil suspension (ranging from 100 to 10-8 levels) from two long-term fertilization treatments to the sterilized soil that has never been fertilized. The two fertilization treatments represented two distinct intensification land use including the unfertilized control (NP0) and a fertilized treatment (NP120) amended with (NH4)2HPO4 annually (120 kg ha-1 yr-1) since 2002 in an alpine meadow on the eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Soil microcosms of 2 fertilization levels crossing 8 biodiversity levels were incubated for 8 months. Then, soil community and multi-functionality parameters including carbon (C)and nutrient mineralization, plant growth and functional stability were determined

  13. Training in Innovative Technologies for Close-Range Sensing in Alpine Terrain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutzinger, M.; Bremer, M.; Höfle, B.; Hämmerle, M.; Lindenbergh, R.; Oude Elberink, S.; Pirotti, F.; Scaioni, M.; Wujanz, D.; Zieher, T.

    2018-05-01

    The 2nd international summer school "Close-range sensing techniques in Alpine terrain" was held in July 2017 in Obergurgl, Austria. Participants were trained in selected close-range sensing methods, such as photogrammetry, laser scanning and thermography. The program included keynotes, lectures and hands-on assignments combining field project planning, data acquisition, processing, quality assessment and interpretation. Close-range sensing was applied for different research questions of environmental monitoring in high mountain environments, such as geomorphologic process quantification, natural hazard management and vegetation mapping. The participants completed an online questionnaire evaluating the summer school, its content and organisation, which helps to improve future summer schools.

  14. Modelling atmospheric circulations for the study of Alpine valleys pollution; Modelisation des circulations atmospheriques pour l'etude de la pollution des vallees alpines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brulfert, G

    2004-11-15

    Local weather phenomena observed in alpine valleys frequently lead to the accumulation of emitted anthropogenic airborne species in the low layers of the atmosphere. The development of a numerical model allows reproducing the chemical evolution of air mass during POVA intensive period of observations. In Chamonix and Maurienne valley, computations of photochemical indicators (NO{sub y}, O{sub 3}/NO{sub z}, H{sub 2}O{sub 2}/HNO{sub 3}) prove the ozone regime to be control by volatile organic compounds. Moreover simulation highlighted that the major part of this secondary pollutant is regionally produced. The development of an indicator who localised ozone production sites can help to define abatement scenarios. The chemical mechanism RACM allows describing the evolution of many species. It is possible to conclude that in winter road traffic and heating are the main sources of volatile organic compounds. (author)

  15. Modelling atmospheric circulations for the study of Alpine valleys pollution; Modelisation des circulations atmospheriques pour l'etude de la pollution des vallees alpines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brulfert, G.

    2004-11-15

    Local weather phenomena observed in alpine valleys frequently lead to the accumulation of emitted anthropogenic airborne species in the low layers of the atmosphere. The development of a numerical model allows reproducing the chemical evolution of air mass during POVA intensive period of observations. In Chamonix and Maurienne valley, computations of photochemical indicators (NO{sub y}, O{sub 3}/NO{sub z}, H{sub 2}O{sub 2}/HNO{sub 3}) prove the ozone regime to be control by volatile organic compounds. Moreover simulation highlighted that the major part of this secondary pollutant is regionally produced. The development of an indicator who localised ozone production sites can help to define abatement scenarios. The chemical mechanism RACM allows describing the evolution of many species. It is possible to conclude that in winter road traffic and heating are the main sources of volatile organic compounds. (author)

  16. Identifying the Relative Contributions of Climate and Grazing to Both Direction and Magnitude of Alpine Grassland Productivity Dynamics from 1993 to 2011 on the Northern Tibetan Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunfei Feng

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau are claimed to be sensitive and vulnerable to climate change and human disturbance. The mechanism, direction and magnitude of climatic and anthropogenic influences on net primary productivity (NPP of various alpine pastures remain under debate. Here, we simulated the potential productivity (with only climate variables being considered as drivers; NPPP and actual productivity (based on remote sensing dataset including both climate and anthropogenic drivers; NPPA from 1993 to 2011. We denoted the difference between NPPP and NPPA as NPPpc to quantify how much forage can be potentially consumed by livestock. The actually consumed productivity (NPPac by livestock were estimated based on meat production and daily forage consumption per standardized sheep unit. We hypothesized that the gap between NPPpc and NPPac (NPPgap indicates the direction of vegetation dynamics, restoration or degradation. Our results show that growing season precipitation rather than temperature significantly relates with NPPgap, although warming was significant for the entire study region while precipitation only significantly increased in the northeastern places. On the Northern Tibetan Plateau, 69.05% of available alpine pastures showed a restoration trend with positive NPPgap, and for 58.74% of alpine pastures, stocking rate is suggested to increase in the future because of the positive mean NPPgap and its increasing trend. This study provides a potential framework for regionally regulating grazing management with aims to restore the degraded pastures and sustainable management of the healthy pastures on the Tibetan Plateau.

  17. High genetic diversity in the coat protein and 3' untranslated regions

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The 3′ terminal region consisting of the coat protein (CP) coding sequence and 3′ untranslated region (3′UTR) was cloned and sequenced from seven isolates. Sequence comparisons revealed considerable genetic diversity among the isolates in their CP and 3′UTR, making CdMV one of the highly variable members ...

  18. 77 FR 35357 - Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Commercial Atlantic Region Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Shark...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-13

    ... Highly Migratory Species; Commercial Atlantic Region Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Shark Fishery Opening Date... commercial Atlantic region non-sandbar large coastal shark fishery. This action is necessary to inform... large coastal shark fishery will open on July 15, 2012. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Karyl Brewster...

  19. Variability and Changes in Climate, Phenology, and Gross Primary Production of an Alpine Wetland Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoming Kang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Quantifying the variability and changes in phenology and gross primary production (GPP of alpine wetlands in the Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau under climate change is essential for assessing carbon (C balance dynamics at regional and global scales. In this study, in situ eddy covariance (EC flux tower observations and remote sensing data were integrated with a modified, satellite-based vegetation photosynthesis model (VPM to investigate the variability in climate change, phenology, and GPP of an alpine wetland ecosystem, located in Zoige, southwestern China. Two-year EC data and remote sensing vegetation indices showed that warmer temperatures corresponded to an earlier start date of the growing season, increased GPP, and ecosystem respiration, and hence increased the C sink strength of the alpine wetlands. Twelve-year long-term simulations (2000–2011 showed that: (1 there were significantly increasing trends for the mean annual enhanced vegetation index (EVI, land surface water index (LSWI, and growing season GPP (R2 ≥ 0.59, p < 0.01 at rates of 0.002, 0.11 year−1 and 16.32 g·C·m−2·year−1, respectively, which was in line with the observed warming trend (R2 = 0.54, p = 0.006; (2 the start and end of the vegetation growing season (SOS and EOS experienced a continuous advancing trend at a rate of 1.61 days·year−1 and a delaying trend at a rate of 1.57 days·year−1 from 2000 to 2011 (p ≤ 0.04, respectively; and (3 with increasing temperature, the advanced SOS and delayed EOS prolonged the wetland’s phenological and photosynthetically active period and, thereby, increased wetland productivity by about 3.7–4.2 g·C·m−2·year−1 per day. Furthermore, our results indicated that warming and the extension of the growing season had positive effects on carbon uptake in this alpine wetland ecosystem.

  20. Site- and Species-Specific Influences on Sub-Alpine Conifer Growth in Mt. Rainier National Park, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Myesa Legendre-Fixx

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Identifying the factors that influence the climate sensitivity of treeline species is critical to understanding carbon sequestration, forest dynamics, and conservation in high elevation forest/meadow ecotones. Using tree cores from four sub-alpine conifer species collected from three sides of Mt. Rainier, WA, USA, we investigated the influences of species identity and sites with different local climates on radial growth–climate relationships. We created chronologies for each species at each site, determined influential plant-relevant annual and seasonal climatic variables influencing growth, and investigated how the strength of climate sensitivity varied across species and location. Overall, similar climate variables constrained growth on all three sides of the mountain for each of the four study species. Summer warmth positively influenced radial growth, whereas snow, spring warmth, previous summer warmth, and spring humidity negatively influenced growth. We discovered only a few subtle differences in the climate sensitivity of co-occurring species at the same site and between the same species at different sites in pairwise comparisons. A model including species by climate interactions provided the best balance between parsimony and fit, but did not lead to substantially greater predictive power relative to a model without site or species interactions. Our results imply that at treeline in moist temperate regions like Mt. Rainier, the same climatic variables drive annual variation in growth across species and locations, despite species differences in physiology and site differences in mean climates.

  1. Effects of Climate Change on Habitat Availability and Configuration for an Endemic Coastal Alpine Bird.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle M Jackson

    Full Text Available North America's coastal mountains are particularly vulnerable to climate change, yet harbour a number of endemic species. With little room "at the top" to track shifting climate envelopes, alpine species may be especially negatively affected by climate-induced habitat fragmentation. We ask how climate change will affect the total amount, mean patch size, and number of patches of suitable habitat for Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan (Lagopus leucura saxatilis; VIWTP, a threatened, endemic alpine bird. Using a Random Forest model and a unique dataset consisting of citizen science observations combined with field surveys, we predict the distribution and configuration of potential suitable summer habitat for VIWTP under baseline and future (2020s, 2050s, and 2080s climates using three general circulation models and two greenhouse gas scenarios. VIWTP summer habitat is predicted to decline by an average of 25%, 44%, and 56% by the 2020s, 2050s, and 2080s, respectively, under the low greenhouse gas scenario and 27%, 59%, and 74% under the high scenario. Habitat patches are predicted to become fragmented, with a 52-79% reduction in mean patch size. The average elevation of suitable habitat patches is expected to increase, reflecting a loss of patches at lower elevations. Thus ptarmigan are in danger of being "squeezed off the mountain", as their remaining suitable habitat will be increasingly confined to mountaintops in the center of the island. The extent to which ptarmigan will be able to persist in increasingly fragmented habitat is unclear. Much will depend on their ability to move throughout a more heterogeneous landscape, utilize smaller breeding areas, and survive increasingly variable climate extremes. Our results emphasize the importance of continued monitoring and protection for high elevation specialist species, and suggest that White-tailed Ptarmigan should be considered an indicator species for alpine ecosystems in the face of

  2. Reconstructing geomorphic patterns and forcing factors from Alpine Lake Sediment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnaud, Fabien; Poulenard, Jérôme; Giguet-Covex, Charline; Wilhelm, Bruno; Révillon, Sidonie; Jenny, Jean-Philippe; Revel, Marie; Enters, Dirk; Bajard, Manon; Fouinat, Laurent; Doyen, Elise; Simonneau, Anaëlle; Pignol, Cécile; Chapron, Emmanuel; Vannière, Boris; Sabatier, Pierre

    2017-04-01

    In this paper we review the scientific efforts that were led over the last decades to reconstruct geomorphic patterns from continuous alpine lake sediment records. Whereas our results point a growing importance of humans as erosion forcing factors, we will focus here on climate-related processes. Our main dataset is made of a regional approach which was led without any a priori regarding erosion forcing factors. We hence integrated a set of sediment sequences from various environment along an altitudinal gradient from 200 up to 2400m asl in Northern French Alps. Altogether our data point climate change as one of the main factor of erosion variability. In particular, the last two cold spells that occurred during the early middle age (Dark Age) and between the 14th and the 20th century AD (Little Ice Age) appear to be outstanding compared to any other periods of enhanced erosion along the Holocene. The climatic forcing of those erosion phases is supported by an increase in the contribution of glacier-eroded material at a regional scale. At local scales, our data also point the growing importance, since at least the mid Bronze Age (ca. 3500 cal. BP) of human activities as a major erosion factor. This influence peaked during the late Iron Age and Antiquity periods (200 BC - 400 AD) when we record a regional generalised period of enhanced erosion in response to the development of pasturing activities. Thanks to provenance and weathering markers, we evidenced a strong relationship between the changes in ecosystems, soil development and erosion patterns. We hence showed the vegetal colonisation of bared soil led to a period of intense weathering while new soils were under formation between 11,000 and 8,000 cal. BP. Soils then knew an optimum until the onset of the Neoglacial at ca. 4,500 cal. BP prior to decline under both climate and human pressures. Altogether our data point the complexity of processes that affected the Earth critical zone along the Holocene. However

  3. Quantitative ecological relationships in the alpine grassland of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A survey, based on 56 000 points at 102 sampling sites in the Tsehlanyane valley of the Oxbow (Madibamatso) Dam catchment in the alpine grassland of Lesotho, indicates that the area is generally in good condition. Physiographic and floristic criteria were measured and the association between pairs of criteria statistically ...

  4. Classification of the eastern alpine vegetation of Lesotho | Morris ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Five vegetation communities in the alpine catchment of Lesotho were identified by hierarchical classification of the botanical composition data. Discriminant analysis indicated that these communities occupy particular topographic positions. The community-environmental relationships identified in this study were similar to ...

  5. Vegetation Structure and Temperature Regimes of Tropical Alpine Treelines

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.Y.; Rietkerk, M.G.; Bregt, A.K.

    2007-01-01

    Alpine treeline ecotones can be gradual transitions, abrupt boundaries, or patchy mosaics, and these different patterns may indicate important processes and dynamic properties. We present observed spatial patterns of a wide range of tropical treelines and try to explain these patterns. Treelines

  6. Vegetation structure and temperature regimes of tropical alpine treelines

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bader, M.; Rietkerk, M.; Bregt, A.K.

    2007-01-01

    Alpine treeline ecotones can be gradual transitions, abrupt boundaries, or patchy mosaics, and these different patterns may indicate important processes and dynamic properties. We present observed spatial patterns of a wide range of tropical treelines and try to explain these patterns. Treelines

  7. Australian Alps: Kosciuszko, Alpine and Namadgi National Parks (Second Edition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole Porter

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Reviewed: Australian Alps: Kosciuszko, Alpine and Namadgi National Parks (Second Edition By Deidre Slattery. Clayton South, Australia: CSIRO Publishing, 2015. xvii + 302 pp. AU$ 45.00, US$ 35.95. ISBN 978-1-486-30171-3.

  8. Alpine Skiing With total knee ArthroPlasty (ASWAP)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, M.; Pötzelsberger, B.; Scheiber, P.

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the effect of alpine skiing for 12 weeks on skeletal muscle characteristics and biomarkers of glucose homeostasis and cardiovascular risk factors. Twenty-three patients with a total knee arthroplasty (TKA) were studied 2.9 ± 0.9 years (mean ± SD) after the operation. Fourteen...

  9. Microstructures Indicate Large Influence of Temperature and Fluid Pressure on the Reactivation of the Alpine Fault, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuck, B.; Janssen, C.; Schleicher, A.; Toy, V.; Dresen, G.

    2017-12-01

    The transpressional Alpine Fault within New Zealand's South Island is the major structure that accommodates relative motion between the Pacific and the Australian Plates. It has been intensively studied, because it is late in its 291-year seismic cycle (Cochran et al., 2017; doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2017.02.026), is likely to generate large (i.e. MW > 8) earthquakes, thus presents the biggest seismic hazard in the region. However, because it is severely misoriented in the present-day stress field for reactivation (Boese et al., 2013; doi: 10.1016/j.epsl.2013.06.030), supra-lithostatic fluid-pressures are required for rupture nucleation. We have analyzed microstructures (SEM and TEM), geochemistry (ICP-OES) and mineralogy (XRD) of outcrop samples of the fault core to investigate the influence of fluids on the geomechanical behavior of the fault. Fluid-related alteration is pervasive within 20 m of the principal slip zone (PSZ) (Sutherland et al., 2012; doi: 10.1130/G33614.1), which is an incohesive, cemented and repeatedly reworked fault gouge mostly consisting of a fine-grained matrix composed of comminuted detrital quartz and feldspar as well as authigenic chlorite and calcite. Authigenic phases seal the PSZ for interseismic cross-fault fluid flow and enable fluid pressure to build-up. Notable, smectite, previously considered to significantly influence propagation of Alpine Fault ruptures, is not present in these samples. Undeformed, euhedral chlorite grains suggest that the processes leading to fault sealing are not only active at greater depths but also close to the surface. The absence of smectite and the presence of undeformed chlorite at very shallow depths can be attributed to the fault's high geothermal gradient of > 120 °C km-1 (Sutherland et al., 2012; doi:10.1038/nature22355), which gives temperature conditions unfavorable for smectite to be stable and fostering chlorite growth. A pervasive network of anastomosing calcite veins in the fault core, depicting

  10. Factors influencing spring and summer areal snow ablation and snowcover depletion in alpine terrain: detailed measurements from the Canadian Rockies

    OpenAIRE

    Schirmer, Michael; Pomeroy, John W.

    2018-01-01

    The spatial distribution of snow water equivalent (SWE) and melt are important to estimating areal melt rates and snowcover depletion dynamics but are rarely measured in detail during the late ablation period. This study contributes the result of high resolution observations made using large numbers of sequential aerial photographs taken from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle on an alpine ridge in the Fortress Mountain Snow Laboratory in the Canadian Rocky Mountains from May to July. With Structure-...

  11. Achieving high baryon densities in the fragmentation regions in heavy ion collisions at top RHIC energy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Ming; Kapusta, Joseph I.

    2017-01-01

    Heavy ion collisions at extremely high energy, such as the top energy at RHIC, exhibit the property of transparency where there is a clear separation between the almost net-baryon-free central rapidity region and the net-baryon-rich fragmentation region. We calculate the net-baryon rapidity loss and the nuclear excitation energy using the energy-momentum tensor obtained from the McLerran-Venugopalan model. Nuclear compression during the collision is further estimated using a simple space-time picture. The results show that extremely high baryon densities, about twenty times larger than the normal nuclear density, can be achieved in the fragmentation regions. (paper)

  12. Diversity and community structure of ectomycorrhizal fungi associated with Larix chinensis across the alpine treeline ecotone of Taibai Mountain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Qisheng; Huang, Jian; Long, Dongfeng; Wang, Xiaobing; Liu, Jianjun

    2017-07-01

    Alpine treeline ecotones represent ecosystems that are vulnerable to climate change. We investigated the ectomycorrhizal (ECM) community, which has potential to stabilize alpine ecosystems. ECM communities associated with Larix chinensis were studied in four zones along a natural ecotone from a mixed forest stand over pure forest stands, the timberline, and eventually, the treeline (3050-3450 m) in Tabai Mountain, China. Sixty operational taxonomic units (OTUs) of ECM fungi were identified by sequencing the rDNA internal transcribed spacer of ECM tips. The richness of ECM species increased with elevation. The soil C/N ratio was the most important factor explaining ECM species richness. The treeline zone harbored some unique ECM fungi whereas no unique genera were observed in the timberline and pure forest zone. Elevation and topography were equally important factors influencing ECM communities in the alpine region. We suggest that a higher diversity of the ECM fungal community associated with L. chinensis in the treeline zone could result from niche differentiation.

  13. Large-displacement, hydrothermal frictional properties of DFDP-1 fault rocks, Alpine Fault, New Zealand: Implications for deep rupture propagation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeijer, A R; Boulton, C; Toy, V G; Townend, J; Sutherland, R

    2016-02-01

    The Alpine Fault, New Zealand, is a major plate-bounding fault that accommodates 65-75% of the total relative motion between the Australian and Pacific plates. Here we present data on the hydrothermal frictional properties of Alpine Fault rocks that surround the principal slip zones (PSZ) of the Alpine Fault and those comprising the PSZ itself. The samples were retrieved from relatively shallow depths during phase 1 of the Deep Fault Drilling Project (DFDP-1) at Gaunt Creek. Simulated fault gouges were sheared at temperatures of 25, 150, 300, 450, and 600°C in order to determine the friction coefficient as well as the velocity dependence of friction. Friction remains more or less constant with changes in temperature, but a transition from velocity-strengthening behavior to velocity-weakening behavior occurs at a temperature of T  = 150°C. The transition depends on the absolute value of sliding velocity as well as temperature, with the velocity-weakening region restricted to higher velocity for higher temperatures. Friction was substantially lower for low-velocity shearing ( V  Fault rocks at higher temperatures may pose a barrier for rupture propagation to deeper levels, limiting the possible depth extent of large earthquakes. Our results highlight the importance of strain rate in controlling frictional behavior under conditions spanning the classical brittle-plastic transition for quartzofeldspathic compositions.

  14. Tree growth acceleration and expansion of alpine forests: The synergistic effect of atmospheric and edaphic change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Lucas C R; Sun, Geng; Zhu-Barker, Xia; Liang, Qianlong; Wu, Ning; Horwath, William R

    2016-08-01

    Many forest ecosystems have experienced recent declines in productivity; however, in some alpine regions, tree growth and forest expansion are increasing at marked rates. Dendrochronological analyses at the upper limit of alpine forests in the Tibetan Plateau show a steady increase in tree growth since the early 1900s, which intensified during the 1930s and 1960s, and have reached unprecedented levels since 1760. This recent growth acceleration was observed in small/young and large/old trees and coincided with the establishment of trees outside the forest range, reflecting a connection between the physiological performance of dominant species and shifts in forest distribution. Measurements of stable isotopes (carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen) in tree rings indicate that tree growth has been stimulated by the synergistic effect of rising atmospheric CO2 and a warming-induced increase in water and nutrient availability from thawing permafrost. These findings illustrate the importance of considering soil-plant-atmosphere interactions to understand current and anticipate future changes in productivity and distribution of forest ecosystems.

  15. The price of safety: costs for mitigating and coping with Alpine hazards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfurtscheller, C.; Thieken, A. H.

    2013-10-01

    Due to limited public budgets and the need to economize, the analysis of costs of hazard mitigation and emergency management of natural hazards becomes increasingly important for public natural hazard and risk management. In recent years there has been a growing body of literature on the estimation of losses which supported to help to determine benefits of measures in terms of prevented losses. On the contrary, the costs of mitigation are hardly addressed. This paper thus aims to shed some light on expenses for mitigation and emergency services. For this, we analysed the annual costs of mitigation efforts in four regions/countries of the Alpine Arc: Bavaria (Germany), Tyrol (Austria), South Tyrol (Italy) and Switzerland. On the basis of PPP values (purchasing power parities), annual expenses on public safety ranged from EUR 44 per capita in the Free State of Bavaria to EUR 216 in the Autonomous Province of South Tyrol. To analyse the (variable) costs for emergency services in case of an event, we used detailed data from the 2005 floods in the Federal State of Tyrol (Austria) as well as aggregated data from the 2002 floods in Germany. The analysis revealed that multi-hazards, the occurrence and intermixture of different natural hazard processes, contribute to increasing emergency costs. Based on these findings, research gaps and recommendations for costing Alpine natural hazards are discussed.

  16. Alpine plant distribution and thermic vegetation indicator on Gloria summits in the central Greater Caucasus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gigauri, K.; Abdaladze, O.; Nakhutsrishvili, G

    2016-01-01

    The distribution of plant species within alpine areas is often directly related to climate or climate-influenced ecological factors. Responding to observed changes in plant species, cover and composition on the GLORIA summits in the Central Caucasus, an extensive setup of 1m * 1m permanent plots was established at the treeline-alpine zones and nival ecotone (between 2240 and 3024 m a.s.l.) on the main watershed range of the Central Greater Caucasus nearby the Cross Pass, Kazbegi region, Georgia. Recording was repeated in a representative selection of 64 quadrates in 2008. The local climatic factors - average soil T degree C and growing degree days (GDD) did not show significant increasing trends. For detection of climate warming we used two indices: thermic vegetation indicator S and thermophilization indicator D. They were varying along altitudinal and exposition gradients. The thermic vegetation indicator decrease in all monitoring summits. The abundance rank of the dominant and endemic species did not change during monitoring period. (author)

  17. Rock glaciers in crystalline catchments: Hidden permafrost-related threats to alpine headwater lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilyashuk, Boris P; Ilyashuk, Elena A; Psenner, Roland; Tessadri, Richard; Koinig, Karin A

    2018-04-01

    A global warming-induced transition from glacial to periglacial processes has been identified in mountainous regions around the world. Degrading permafrost in pristine periglacial environments can produce acid rock drainage (ARD) and cause severe ecological damage in areas underlain by sulfide-bearing bedrock. Limnological and paleolimnological approaches were used to assess and compare ARDs generated by rock glaciers, a typical landform of the mountain permafrost domain, and their effects on alpine headwater lakes with similar morphometric features and underlying bedrock geology, but characterized by different intensities of frost action in their catchments during the year. We argue that ARD and its effects on lakes are more severe in the alpine periglacial belt with mean annual air temperatures (MAAT) between -2°C and +3°C, where groundwater persists in the liquid phase for most of the year, in contrast to ARD in the periglacial belt where frost action dominates (MAAT cycle of aquatic organisms should be considered when reconstructing long-term trends in the ecotoxicological state of lakes. © 2017 The Authors. Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Influence of mineralogy and microstructures on strain localization and fault zone architecture of the Alpine Fault, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ichiba, T.; Kaneki, S.; Hirono, T.; Oohashi, K.; Schuck, B.; Janssen, C.; Schleicher, A.; Toy, V.; Dresen, G.

    2017-12-01

    The Alpine Fault on New Zealand's South Island is an oblique, dextral strike-slip fault that accommodated the majority of displacement between the Pacific and the Australian Plates and presents the biggest seismic hazard in the region. Along its central segment, the hanging wall comprises greenschist and amphibolite facies Alpine Schists. Exhumation from 35 km depth, along a SE-dipping detachment, lead to mylonitization which was subsequently overprinted by brittle deformation and finally resulted in the fault's 1 km wide damage zone. The geomechanical behavior of a fault is affected by the internal structure of its fault zone. Consequently, studying processes controlling fault zone architecture allows assessing the seismic hazard of a fault. Here we present the results of a combined microstructural (SEM and TEM), mineralogical (XRD) and geochemical (XRF) investigation of outcrop samples originating from several locations along the Alpine Fault, the aim of which is to evaluate the influence of mineralogical composition, alteration and pre-existing fabric on strain localization and to identify the controls on the fault zone architecture, particularly the locus of brittle deformation in P, T and t space. Field observations reveal that the fault's principal slip zone (PSZ) is either a thin (< 1 cm to < 7 cm) layered structure or a relatively thick (10s cm) package lacking a detectable macroscopic fabric. Lithological and related rheological contrasts are widely assumed to govern strain localization. However, our preliminary results suggest that qualitative mineralogical composition has only minor impact on fault zone architecture. Quantities of individual mineral phases differ markedly between fault damage zone and fault core at specific sites, but the quantitative composition of identical structural units such as the fault core, is similar in all samples. This indicates that the degree of strain localization at the Alpine Fault might be controlled by small initial

  19. Early establishment of trees at the alpine treeline: idiosyncratic species responses to temperature-moisture interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loranger, Hannah; Zotz, Gerhard; Bader, Maaike Y

    2016-01-01

    On a global scale, temperature is the main determinant of arctic and alpine treeline position. However on a local scale, treeline form and position vary considerably due to other climatic factors, tree species ecology and life-stage-dependent responses. For treelines to advance poleward or uphill, the first steps are germination and seedling establishment. These earliest life stages may be major bottlenecks for treeline tree populations and will depend differently on climatic conditions than adult trees. We investigated the effect of soil temperature and moisture on germination and early seedling survival in a field experiment in the French Alps near the local treeline (2100 m a.s.l.) using passive temperature manipulations and two watering regimes. Five European treeline tree species were studied: Larix decidua, Picea abies, Pinus cembra, Pinus uncinata and Sorbus aucuparia In addition, we monitored the germination response of three of these species to low temperatures under controlled conditions in growth chambers. The early establishment of these trees at the alpine treeline was limited either by temperature or by moisture, the sensitivity to one factor often depending on the intensity of the other. The results showed that the relative importance of the two factors and the direction of the effects are highly species-specific, while both factors tend to have consistent effects on both germination and early seedling survival within each species. We show that temperature and water availability are both important contributors to establishment patterns of treeline trees and hence to species-specific forms and positions of alpine treelines. The observed idiosyncratic species responses highlight the need for studies including several species and life-stages to create predictive power concerning future treeline dynamics. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company.

  20. A free tool integrating GIS features and workflows to evaluate sediment connectivity in alpine catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crema, Stefano; Schenato, Luca; Goldin, Beatrice; Marchi, Lorenzo; Cavalli, Marco

    2014-05-01

    The increased interest in sediment connectivity has brought the geomorphologists' community to focus on sediment fluxes as a key process (Cavalli et al., 2013; Heckmann and Schwanghart, 2013). The challenge of dealing with erosion-related processes in alpine catchments is of primary relevance for different fields of investigations and applications, including, but not limited to natural hazards, hydraulic structures design, ecology and stream restoration. The present work focuses on the development of a free tool for sediment connectivity assessment as described in Cavalli et al. (2013), introducing some novel improvements. The choice of going for a free software is motivated by the need of widening the access and improving participation beyond the restrictions on algorithms customization, typical of commercial software. A couple of features further enhance the tool: being completely free and adopting a user-friendly interface, its target audience includes researchers and stakeholders (e.g., local managers and civil protection authorities in charge of planning the priorities of intervention in the territory), being written in Python programming language, it can benefit from optimized algorithms for high-resolution DEMs (Digital Elevation Models) handling and for propagation workflows implementation; these two factors make the tool computationally competitive with the most recent commercial GIS products. The overall goal of this tool is supporting the analysis of sediment connectivity, facing the challenge of widening, as much as possible, the users' community among scientists and stakeholders. This aspect is crucial, as future improvement of this tool will benefit of feedbacks from users in order to improve the quantitative assessment of sediment connectivity as a major input information for the optimal management of mountain areas. References: Cavalli, M., Trevisani, S., Comiti, F., Marchi, L., 2013. Geomorphometric assessment of spatial sediment connectivity in

  1. A modified MOD16 algorithm to estimate evapotranspiration over alpine meadow on the Tibetan Plateau, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Yaping; Qin, Dahe; Ding, Yongjian; Zhao, Qiudong; Zhang, Shiqiang

    2018-06-01

    The long-term change of evapotranspiration (ET) is crucial for managing water resources in areas with extreme climates, such as the Tibetan Plateau (TP). This study proposed a modified algorithm for estimating ET based on the MOD16 algorithm on a global scale over alpine meadow on the TP in China. Wind speed and vegetation height were integrated to estimate aerodynamic resistance, while the temperature and moisture constraints for stomatal conductance were revised based on the technique proposed by Fisher et al. (2008). Moreover, Fisher's method for soil evaporation was adopted to reduce the uncertainty in soil evaporation estimation. Five representative alpine meadow sites on the TP were selected to investigate the performance of the modified algorithm. Comparisons were made between the ET observed using the Eddy Covariance (EC) and estimated using both the original and modified algorithms. The results revealed that the modified algorithm performed better than the original MOD16 algorithm with the coefficient of determination (R2) increasing from 0.26 to 0.68, and root mean square error (RMSE) decreasing from 1.56 to 0.78 mm d-1. The modified algorithm performed slightly better with a higher R2 (0.70) and lower RMSE (0.61 mm d-1) for after-precipitation days than for non-precipitation days at Suli site. Contrarily, better results were obtained for non-precipitation days than for after-precipitation days at Arou, Tanggula, and Hulugou sites, indicating that the modified algorithm may be more suitable for estimating ET for non-precipitation days with higher accuracy than for after-precipitation days, which had large observation errors. The comparisons between the modified algorithm and two mainstream methods suggested that the modified algorithm could produce high accuracy ET over the alpine meadow sites on the TP.

  2. Influence of Slope-Scale Snowmelt on Catchment Response Simulated With the Alpine3D Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brauchli, Tristan; Trujillo, Ernesto; Huwald, Hendrik; Lehning, Michael

    2017-12-01

    Snow and hydrological modeling in alpine environments remains challenging because of the complexity of the processes affecting the mass and energy balance. This study examines the influence of snowmelt on the hydrological response of a high-alpine catchment of 43.2 km2 in the Swiss Alps during the water year 2014-2015. Based on recent advances in Alpine3D, we examine how snow distributions and liquid water transport within the snowpack influence runoff dynamics. By combining these results with multiscale observations (snow lysimeter, distributed snow depths, and streamflow), we demonstrate the added value of a more realistic snow distribution at the onset of melt season. At the site scale, snowpack runoff is well simulated when the mass balance errors are corrected (R2 = 0.95 versus R2 = 0.61). At the subbasin scale, a more heterogeneous snowpack leads to a more rapid runoff pulse originating in the shallower areas while an extended melting period (by a month) is caused by snowmelt from deeper areas. This is a marked improvement over results obtained using a traditional precipitation interpolation method. Hydrological response is also improved by the more realistic snowpack (NSE of 0.85 versus 0.74), even though calibration processes smoothen out the differences. The added value of a more complex liquid water transport scheme is obvious at the site scale but decreases at larger scales. Our results highlight not only the importance but also the difficulty of getting a realistic snowpack distribution even in a well-instrumented area and present a model validation from multiscale experimental data sets.

  3. Sex-specific selection for MHC variability in Alpine chamois

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schaschl Helmut

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In mammals, males typically have shorter lives than females. This difference is thought to be due to behavioural traits which enhance competitive abilities, and hence male reproductive success, but impair survival. Furthermore, in many species males usually show higher parasite burden than females. Consequently, the intensity of selection for genetic factors which reduce susceptibility to pathogens may differ between sexes. High variability at the major histocompatibility complex (MHC genes is believed to be advantageous for detecting and combating the range of infectious agents present in the environment. Increased heterozygosity at these immune genes is expected to be important for individual longevity. However, whether males in natural populations benefit more from MHC heterozygosity than females has rarely been investigated. We investigated this question in a long-term study of free-living Alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra, a polygynous mountain ungulate. Results Here we show that male chamois survive significantly (P = 0.022 longer if heterozygous at the MHC class II DRB locus, whereas females do not. Improved survival of males was not a result of heterozygote advantage per se, as background heterozygosity (estimated across twelve microsatellite loci did not change significantly with age. Furthermore, reproductively active males depleted their body fat reserves earlier than females leading to significantly impaired survival rates in this sex (P Conclusions Increased MHC class II DRB heterozygosity with age in males, suggests that MHC heterozygous males survive longer than homozygotes. Reproductively active males appear to be less likely to survive than females most likely because of the energetic challenge of the winter rut, accompanied by earlier depletion of their body fat stores, and a generally higher parasite burden. This scenario renders the MHC-mediated immune response more important for males than for females

  4. Description and classification of nonallophanic Andosols in south Ecuadorian alpine grasslands (páramo)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buytaert, Wouter; Deckers, Jozef; Wyseure, Guido

    2006-02-01

    The páramo is a neotropical alpine ecosystem that covers more than 75,000 km 2 of the northern Andes of Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, and Peru. It provides important environmental services: more than 10 million people in the Andean highlands benefit from the water supply and regulation function, which is attributed to the volcanic soils that underlie the ecosystem. The soils are also major carbon sinks of global significance. Severe land use changes and soil degradation threaten both the hydrology and carbon sink function. Nevertheless, soil genesis and properties in the páramo is rather poorly understood, nor are their ecological functions well documented. The impact of the geomorphology of the páramo on soil genesis was studied in the rio Paute basin, south Ecuador. Two toposequences were described and analysed. In each toposequence, four pedons were selected representing summit, backslope, undrained plain situation, and valley bottom positions in the landscape. The soils are classified as Hydric Andosols in the World Reference Base for Soil Resources and Epiaquands or Hydrudands in Soil Taxonomy. They are very acidic and have a high organic matter content, high P deficiency, and Al toxicity. Their water content ranges from 2.64 g g - 1 at saturation, down to 1.24 g g - 1 at wilting point, resulting in a large water storage capacity. Two major soil forming processes are identified: (1) volcanic ash deposition and (2) accumulation of organic carbon. Volcanic ash deposits may vary in depth as a result of regional geomorphological factors such as parent material, orientation, slope, and altitude. Organic carbon accumulation is an interaction of both waterlogging, which depends on the position in the landscape, and the formation of organometallic complexes with Al and Fe released during volcanic ash breakdown. Despite the high variability in parent material and topography, the soil is characterised by a notable homogeneity in physico-chemical properties

  5. Highlighting High Performance: Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School; Upton, Massachusetts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2006-10-01

    This brochure describes the key high-performance building features of the Blackstone Valley High School. The brochure was paid for by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative as part of their Green Schools Initiative. High-performance features described are daylighting and energy-efficient lighting, indoor air quality, solar energy, building envelope, heating and cooling systems, and water conservation. Energy cost savings are also discussed.

  6. Des broussailles dans les prairies alpines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Camacho

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Landscape closing due to the decline in agricultural activity is considered to be a major problem in the Alps. Abondance Valley provides a good example of this phenomenon and is also representative of a paradox commonly found in the Northern French Alps: the mountainsides and alpine pastures are still used, whereas they are becoming increasingly afforested. Environmental conditions play a major role in the localisation of agricultural land uses, but they are not sufficient to explain why pastures still in use are being invaded by shrub. Even if cutting makes it possible to effectively control the encroachment by woody species, this is not true for uncut pastures where grazing is not able to keep up with grass production. This situation is repeated