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Dale Andersen
Works at Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe, SETI Institute
Attended McGill University
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Antarctica 1986  Twin seventies on my back, a Kirby Morgan full face mask, Unisuit drysuit and an eighty foot wall of ice....another nice day in the McMurdo Dry Valleys at Lake Hoare!


 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7aNnzUnNug

#Antarctia   #Diving   #SCUBA  
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Celebrating the Diversity of Life - The Long-tailed Jaeger

The Long-tailed Jaeger is the smallest of the Skua family and is normally found far offshore; but during the summer months adults head inland and nest on the tundra in the High Arctic. We often see Jaegers while at MARS (McGill Arctic Research Station) cavorting in the skies during courtship and its not uncommon to stumble upon a nesting site only to have the pair spend the next few minutes practicing their dive-bombing skills.
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Musk-ox on MARS!

While at the McGill Arctic Research Station in the Canadian High Arctic (M.A.R.S.) we had 21 musk-ox foraging on the nearby slopes. I am still amazed that these relatively large animals are able to find enough sustenance by grazing the relatively sparse tundra. During one my excursions to a nearby camp I had to pass by them which gave me the opportunity to capture a few images. They were all pretty laid back but eventually the lead bull of the group took time to look up, check me out and pose for a minute or two before heading back over to continue his afternoon snack.

  #Musk -ox   #wildlifephotography   #arctic  
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Axel Heiberg, July 2015

Snow Buntings are a small, delightful bird and is perhaps the most commonly seen (and heard) bird in the High Arctic. Males of this species arrive in April when air temperatures are still in the -30's and snows cover dominates the landscape. In the summer we often have several families near the huts and fledglings tend to hang pretty close by with their cheerful chirping punctuating the relative quiet.

#birds   #Arctic   #photography  
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Exploring Mars with Dr. Chris McKay

A nice interview by Leonard David with Chris McKay of NASA's Ames Research Center. Chris and I have worked together since the mid 1980's in far-off places such as Antarctica, the High Arctic, Siberia and the Atacama Desert in an effort to help focus questions and develop strategies for the search for life on Mars. Perhaps one day we will have samples return from the Red Planet, and humans will be sent there to drill into its thick permafrost!

http://spacenews.com/qa-with-chris-mckay-senior-scientist-at-nasa-ames-research-center/


#Mars   #Astrobiology  #Exobiology   #NASA  
Christopher McKay, one of NASA’s most recognizable names in the field of astrobiology, argues that Mars probes to date have, quite literally, barely scratched the surface. The answers, he suggests, lie much deeper than the nuclear-powered Mars Curiosity rover has drilled to date.
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Last night I returned from Resolute Bay in the Canadian High Arctic having completed some nice fieldwork at the perennial springs located on Axel Helberg Island (79° 26’ N, 90° 46’ W) about 700 hundred miles from the North Pole. The image is of an Arctic Hare that visited our camp (the McGill Arctic Research Station) occasionally - in the background are the White and Thompson glaciers.  Interestingly, the White Glacier, a small alpine glacier, has the longest running mass balance record for any glacier in the high arctic, with yearly measurements dating back to about 1960 when Fritz Mueller of McGill University began tracking the balance between ice accumulation and ablation at this site.

#arctic   #wildlife   #glacier  
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Are We Alone: Searching for Life in the Solar System and Beyond

A very nice talk by  NASA's Chief Scientist Dr. Ellen Stofan at the Lake Placid Institute's Adirondack Roundtable

from North Country Public Radio

#NASA   #NCPR   #Adirondack   #Astrbiology  
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EPIC Views of the Earth-Moon System from L1



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMdhQsHbWTs&feature=youtu.be
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Exploring the Night Sky with NASA JPL!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-R1tk775PI
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The Exploration and Colonization of Mars

Joel gives a nice overview of the process of exploring the planet Mars, and why its interesting to so many of us....and why the human exploration of Mars should (and eventually will) take place. Joel's taking a pretty optimistic point of view in this regard.....however, until there is a serious commitment to establish a human presence on Mars (or even just return one small sample of pretty much anything) we will always be 15, 20, 30 years out from actually going or doing anything serious. One just needs to look at the stack of presentations, papers, plans, studies, Vu-Graphs, and power point slides that have littered the halls of NASA Headquarters and the various NASA centers over the last thirty years to see that this is sadly the case.  Even the next set of missions such as Mars 2020 represent a lackluster attempt to just maintain some semblance of interest. If only we could rekindle the fire of exploration that drove the 1960's! Lets get out of LEO and do something!

https://www.youtube.com/watchv=YzhSmnGcSkE&list=PLsRNoUx8w3rNAL1f4z_BukhvIXsOZFQxr&index=11


#TED   #Mars   #Exploration   #NASA  
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MARS on Earth

 Axel Helberg Island (79° 26’ N, 90° 46’ W) about 700 hundred miles from the North Pole.

An image of MARS (McGill Arctic Research Station) looking to the north. In this image Wolf Peak dominates the background with Colour Lake and MARS in the foreground. The small peak off to the west is Colour Peak, site of one of the more significant perennial spring systems located on Axel Heiberg Island and of interest to us exobiologists as an analog for springs in regions with thick, continuous permafrost (like on the planet Mars). Here the permafrost depth reaches 600 m.

#Mars   #Arctic #Hydrology   #McGill  
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Arctic Farewells: Last Saturday I was just a few hundred miles from the north pole, but today I find myself back home having completed our research at the perennial springs located on Axel Helberg Island. Departing Resolute Bay for Ottawa begins early with a check-in at the airport around 5am. That morning I awoke about 4 and carried my sleeping bag and other items that I store in Resolute over to the PCSP hanger.  During the short walk I encountered a female fox and four kits cavorting in the early morning polar sunshine. It was a nice touch to an enjoyable, productive time in the High Arctic.

Now I will begin to turn my thoughts towards the south, and Antarctica! 
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Work
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Employment
  • Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe, SETI Institute
    Scientist, 1993 - present
    I am a scientist and an explorer and I conduct interesting and unusual research in some of the most extreme and remote places on the planet. I carry out research to understand how microbial life is able to exist in extreme environments on Earth. I use the resulting scientific findings to better understand Earth’s earliest biosphere and to help guide the search for life elsewhere such as on the planet Mars.
  • Lockheed Engineering and Sciences Co.
    Principal Scientist, 1987 - 1993
    Provided programmatic support for NASA's Space Life Sciences Division (mainly Exobiology, CELSS, Biospherics programs), NASA HQ, Washington, D.C.
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Job Description: To Explore the Unknown
Introduction

Dale T. Andersen, Ph.D.

Expertise: Limnology/Astrobiology

Affiliation: Carls Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe, SETI Institute 

Fellow Member, 1987 The Explorers Club

Help Support Dale's Research!

https://www.teamseti.org/supportdale

Your support will enable our continued research of one of the most beautiful and fascinating ecosystems on the planet – one we discovered while diving beneath thick Antarctic ice.  Our work is a journey of discovery – one that encompasses adventure, curiosity, imagination, leadership and courage along with a burning desire to advance knowledge. Importantly, we are seeking adequate funding to support our ongoing efforts of scientific research, technical analyses and syntheses of scientific information that will help explain critical emerging issues pertaining to the conservation and preservation of fragile ecosystems in Antarctica. 

Certification/Education:

BS Biology, Va Tech 

Ph.D.,  Physical Geography, McGill University


Job Description: To Explore the Unknown


Dale has been a Principal Investigator at the SETI Institute’s Center for the Study of Life in the Universe since 1993.  During this time, his research has focused on microbial ecosystems in extreme environments including areas of the Arctic, Antarctic, Atacama Desert, Death Valley and Siberia.


Dale’s research interests are with the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe and he has been involved with NASA’s Exobiology and Astrobiology programs since the mid 1980’s.  He is interested in locating, characterizing and understanding environments where physical and chemical conditions approach or exceed the tolerances for life. This includes biogeochemical processes occurring in polar lakes, oceans, and springs, or in lithic environments such as sandstones or retrogressive thaw slumps harbouring massive ground ice. Of particular interest are the physical controls and ecological impacts that perennial ice-covers and thick continuous permafrost have on the structure and function of microbial ecosystems.


Dale has participated in field research in polar regions for more than 30 years having participated and led 14 expeditions to the Antarctic (each lasting 4.5-6 months on the continent) and over twenty-six expeditions to the Arctic. Dale helped pioneer scientific research diving in the perennially ice-covered lakes of the McMurdo Dry Valleys and the Bunger Hills and has made more than 600 dives beneath polar ice, north and south.  Dale was the first to use remotely operated vehicle (ROV) technology in the Antarctic to help explore lake and marine environments and as a PI at the SETI Institute he helped develop and utilize telepresence technology to extend the capabilities of the underwater ROV’s. 


Dale’s research has been featured in numerous newspaper and popular journals such as National Geographic and Sky and Telescope as well as on the Discovery Channel Canada, National Geographic TV and in three PBS programs - Life on Ice, Antarctica and MarsLive! From Other worlds and The New Explorers - Crystal Lab.  Dale created and was the driving force behind the production of the award winning documentary Life on Ice, Antarctica and Mars and Live! From Other Worlds, a three part, interactive field trip that allowed students to make virtual dives with Dale under the ice in Antarctica while controlling telepresent rovers from their desktop computers. Dale is a Fellow Member of the Explorers Club (FN87), and an Eagle Scout.

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Bragging rights
Early internet blogger with "Dale's Dive Diary" hosted by NASA Quest in Nov-Dec 1993
Education
  • McGill University
    2004
  • McGill University
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Groundbreaking developments in science, space, technology, health, the environment, our culture and history

COLUMN: Beneath 10 feet of ice
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LAKE PLACID Dale Andersen is one of only five human beings in history who have explored the depth of Lake Untersee, by diving through a hole

Lake Untersee, South Basin #1
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Lake Untersee, Dec 1 2011. Lake Untersee is one of the largest (11.4 km2) and deepest (>160 m) freshwater lakes in East Antarctica. L