Unified Interior Regions

Alaska

The Alaska Region represents a resource-rich, dynamic landscape shaped by volcanos, earthquakes, major rivers, and glaciers. Here, we conduct research to inform management of Alaska’s extensive natural resources, inform national Arctic energy policy, and provide scientific information to help others understand, respond to, and mitigate impacts from natural hazards.

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Filter Total Items: 205
Date published: January 19, 2018
Status: Active

Research Conducted in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) Coastal Plain (1002 Area)

Selected Bibliography of Research Involving USGS and Conducted in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) Coastal Plain (1002 Area)

Compiled as of 12/17/2018

Date published: January 19, 2018
Status: Active

Research Conducted in the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska (NPRA)

Selected Bibliography of Research Involving USGS and Conducted in the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska (NPR-A)

Compiled as of 12/17/2018

Date published: January 19, 2018
Status: Active

Broad-scale Research Conducted Across the 1002 Area and the NPR-A of Alaska

Selected Bibliography of Broad-scale Research Involving USGS and Conducted Across the 1002 Area and the NPR-A of Alaska

Compiled as of 12/17/2018

Date published: January 18, 2018
Status: Active

National Assessment of Coastal Vulnerability to Sea Level Rise

The original national coastal vulnerability index (CVI) assessment was motivated by expected accelerated sea-level rise (SLR) and the uncertainty in the response of the coastline to SLR. This research was conducted between 1999 and 2001, and is currently being updated using new data sources and methodology. This original study was part of the ...

Date published: January 18, 2018
Status: Active

Alaska Science Center Previous Seminars

The USGS Alaska Science Center has a monthly seminar series that runs from October through May.  This series highlights the multiple research programs that are taking place across all disciplines at the center.

Listed below are previous seminars given.

Contacts: Yvette Gillies
Date published: January 18, 2018
Status: Active

Long-Term Coastal Change

Goals of this task include developing and improving coastal-change assessments and supporting long-term planning and decision making to ensure sustainable coastal economies, infrastructure, and ecosystems.

Date published: January 10, 2018
Status: Active

USGS Research Vessel Alaskan Gyre

The R/V Alaskan Gyre is a 50-foot fiberglass seiner that has been converted into a versatile research vessel to provide USGS scientists and collaborators with access to remote marine areas of Alaska and serve as a mobile laboratory.  The vessel was built by Ledford Marine of Marysville, Washington in 1989 and is named after the Alaskan Gyre, a series of wind driven currents that...

Date published: December 18, 2017
Status: Active

Polar Bear Maternal Denning

Pregnant polar bears enter maternity dens in October/November, give birth to cubs in December/January, and exit dens in March/April. Historically, most polar bears from the Southern Beaufort Sea (SBS) population constructed maternity dens on the sea ice.  Over the last three decades, as sea ice has become thinner and prone to fragmentation, there has been a landward shift in the distribution...

Date published: December 15, 2017
Status: Active

Distribution and Movements of Polar Bears

Polar bears are tied to the sea ice for nearly all of their life cycle functions. Most important of these is foraging, or access to food. Polar bears almost exclusively eat seals, and they are equally as dependent upon the sea for their nutrition as are seals, whales, and other aquatic mammals. Polar bears are not aquatic, however, and their only access to the seals is from the surface of the...

Date published: December 15, 2017
Status: Active

Polar Bear Population Dynamics

Information on the status and trends of polar bear populations are needed to inform management of polar bears under US laws and international agreements. The USGS maintains a long-term research program focused on the population dynamics of the southern Beaufort Sea polar bear population.  In addition, the USGS collaborates with the US Fish and Wildlife Service in population studies in the...

Date published: December 15, 2017
Status: Active

Health and Energetics of Polar Bears

Research in this focal area is centered on (i) collecting data on a variety of systems that help determine and mediate polar bear health and energetics, and (ii) developing monitoring and surveillance programs for detecting changes in population health over time. Additionally, this work will allow us to develop an understanding of how polar bear populations will respond to a variety of...

Filter Total Items: 213
Date published: January 1, 2019

Orthophotomosaic image (natural color) of the north coast of Barter Island, Alaska acquired on July 01 2014 (GeoTIFF image, 19-cm resolution)

Aerial photographs were collected from a small, fixed-wing aircraft over the coast of Barter Island, Alaska on July 01 2014, September 07 2014. Precise aircraft position information and structure-from-motion photogrammetric methods were combined to derive a high-resolution orthophotomosaic. This orthophotomosaic contain 3-band, 8-bit, unsigned raster data (red/green/blue; file f

Date published: January 1, 2019

Orthophotomosaic image (natural color) of the north coast of Barter Island, Alaska acquired on September 07 2014 (GeoTIFF image; 11-cm resolution)

Aerial photographs were collected from a small, fixed-wing aircraft over the coast of Barter Island, Alaska on September 07 2014. Precise aircraft position information and structure-from-motion photogrammetric methods were combined to derive a high-resolution orthophotomosaic. This orthophotomosaic contain 3-band, 8-bit, unsigned raster data (red/green/blue; file format-GeoTIFF)

Date published: January 1, 2019

Minimal offshore extent of ice-bearing (subsea) permafrost on the U.S. Beaufort Sea margin

The present-day distribution of subsea permafrost beneath high-latitude continental shelves has implications for sea level rise and climate change since the Last Glacial Maximum (~20,000 years ago). Because permafrost can be spatially associated with gas hydrate (which may be thermodynamically stable within the several hundred meters above and below the base of permafrost), the con

Date published: January 1, 2019

High-resolution acoustic backscatter data collected southwest of Chenega Island, Alaska during field activity 2014-622-FA

High-resolution acoustic backscatter data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in May of 2014 southwest of Chenega Island, Alaska. Data were collected aboard the Alaska Department of Fish and Game vessel, R/V Solstice, during USGS field activity 2014-622-FA, using a pole mounted 100-kHz Reson 7111 multibeam echosounder.

Date published: January 1, 2019

Geochemical analysis of seeps along the Queen Charlotte Fault

Geochemical analyses of authigenic carbonates, bivalves, and pore fluids were performed on samples collected from seep fields along the Queen Charlotte Fault, a right lateral transform boundary that separates the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. Samples were collected using grab samplers and piston cores, and were collected during three different research cruises in 2011, 201

Date published: January 1, 2019

Minisparker seismic-reflection data collected southwest of Montague Island and southwest of Chenega, Alaska during field activity 2014-622-FA

High-resolution single channel minisparker seismic-reflection data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in May 2014 in southern Prince William Sound southwest of Chenega and from southwest of Montague Island, Alaska. Data were collected aboard the Alaska Department of Fish and Game vessel, R/V Solstice, during field activity 2014-622-FA%2

Date published: January 1, 2019

High-resolution multibeam bathymetry data collected southwest of Montague Island, Alaska during field activity 2014-622-FA

High-resolution multibeam data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in May of 2014 southwest of Montague Island, Alaska. Data were collected aboard the Alaska Department of Fish and Game vessel, R/V Solstice, during USGS field activity 2014-622-FA, using a pole mounted 100-kHz Reson 7111 multibeam echosounder.

Date published: January 1, 2019

Orthophotomosaic images (natural color) of the north coast of Barter Island, Alaska acquired on July 05 2015 (GeoTIFF image; 8-cm resolution)

Aerial photographs were collected from a small, fixed-wing aircraft over the coast of Barter Island, Alaska on July 05 2015. Precise aircraft position information and structure-from-motion photogrammetric methods were combined to a derive high-resolution orthophotomosaic. This orthophotomosaic contain 3-band, 8-bit, unsigned raster data (red/green/blue; file format-GeoTIFF) with

Date published: January 1, 2019

High-resolution acoustic backscatter data collected southwest of Montague Island, Alaska during field activity 2014-622-FA

High-resolution acoustic backscatter data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in May of 2014 southwest of Montague Island, Alaska. Data were collected aboard the Alaska Department of Fish and Game vessel, R/V Solstice, during USGS field activity 2014-622-FA, using a pole mounted 100-kHz Reson 7111 multibeam echosounder.

Date published: January 1, 2019

Digital surface models of the north coast of Barter Island, Alaska acquired on July 01 2014, September 07 2014, and July 05 2015 (GeoTIFF image)

Digital surface elevation models (DSMs) of the coastline of Barter Island, Alaska derived from aerial photographs collected on July 01 2014, September 07 2014, and July 05 2015. Aerial photographs and coincident elevation data were processed using Structure-from-Motion (SfM) photogrammetric techniques. These files are single-band, 32-bit floating point DSMs (digital surface mode

Date published: January 1, 2019

Elevation point clouds of the north coast of Barter Island, Alaska acquired July 01 2014, September 07 2014, and July 05 2015 (LAZ file)

Six elevation point cloud files in LAZ format (compressed LAS binary data) are included in this data release: 3 raw point clouds of unclassified and unedited points and 3 modified point clouds that were spatially shifted and edited to remove outliers and spurious elevation values associated with moving water surfaces. An XYZ coordinate shift was applied to each data set in order to register...

Date published: January 1, 2019

Surveyed ground control and elevation checkpoints acquired at Barter Island, Alaska, 2014-2016

Ground control points and checkpoints were collected during Global Positioning System (GPS) surveys conducted between September 6, 2014 and September 18, 2016 along the northern coast of Barter Island, Alaska. Data were acquired and post-processed using precise positioning and used to co-register and assess accuracy of photogrammetric data sets.

Filter Total Items: 138
Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 1966

Gravity survey and regional geology of the Prince William Sound epicentral region, Alaska: Chapter C in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects

Sedimentary and volcanic rocks of Mesozoic and early Tertiary age form a roughly arcuate pattern in and around Prince William Sound, the epicentral region of the Alaska earthquake of 1964. These rocks include the Valdez Group, a predominantly slate and graywacke sequence of Jurassic and Cretaceous age, and the Orca Group, a younger sequence of...

Case, J.E.; Barnes, D.F.; Plafker, George; Robbins, S.L.
Gravity survey and regional geology of the Prince William Sound epicentral region, Alaska: Chapter C in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects; 1966; PP; 543-C; The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects (Professional Paper 543); Case, J. E.; Barnes, D. F.; Plafker, George; Robbins, S. L.

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Year Published: 1966

Slide-induced waves, seiching and ground fracturing caused by the earthquake of March 27, 1964 at Kenai Lake, Alaska: Chapter A in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects

The March 27, 1964, earthquake dislodged slides from nine deltas in Kenai Lake, south-central Alaska. Sliding removed protruding parts of deltas-often the youngest parts-and steepened delta fronts, increasing the chances of further sliding. Fathograms show that debris from large slides spread widely over the lake floor, some reaching the toe of...

McCulloch, David S.
Slide-induced waves, seiching and ground fracturing caused by the earthquake of March 27, 1964 at Kenai Lake, Alaska: Chapter A in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects; 1966; PP; 543-A; The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects (Professional Paper 543); McCulloch, David S.

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Year Published: 1966

The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: field investigations and reconstruction effort

One of the greatest geotectonic events of our time occurred in southern Alaska late in the afternoon of March 27, 1964. Beneath a leaden sky, the chill of evening was just settling over the Alaskan countryside. Light snow was falling on some communities. It was Good Friday, schools were closed, and the business day was ending. Suddenly without...

Hansen, Wallace R.; Eckel, Edwin B.; Schaem, William E.; Lyle, Robert E.; George, Warren; Chance, Genie
The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: field investigations and reconstruction effort; 1966; PP; 541; Hansen, Wallace R.; Eckel, Edwin B.; Schaem, William E.; Lyle, Robert E.; George, Warren; Chance, Genie

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Year Published: 1966

The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects

This is the third in a series of six reports that the U.S. Geological Survey published on the results of a comprehensive geologic study that began, as a reconnaissance survey, within 24 hours after the March 27, 1964, Magnitude 9.2 Great Alaska Earthquake and extended, as detailed investigations, through several field seasons. The 1964 Great...

McCulloch, David S.; Tuthill, Samuel J.; Laird, Wilson M.; Case, J.E.; Barnes, D.F.; Plafker, George; Robbins, S.L.; Kachadoorian, Reuben; Ferrians, Oscar J.; Foster, Helen L.; Karlstrom, Thor N.V.; Kirkby, M.J.; Kirkby, Anne V.; Stanley, Kirk W.
The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: regional effects; 1966; PP; 543; McCulloch, David S.; Tuthill, Samuel J.; Laird, Wilson M.; Case, J.E.; Barnes, D.F.; Plafker, George; Robbins, S.L.; Kachadoorian, Reuben; Ferrians, Oscar J., Jr.; Foster, Helen L.; Karlstrom, Thor N.V.; Kirkby, M.J.; Kirkby, Anne V.; Stanley, Kirk W.

Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 1965

Effects of the earthquake of March 27, 1964, at Anchorage, Alaska: Chapter A in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities

Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city, is about 80 miles west-northwest of the epicenter of the March 27 earthquake. Because of its size, Anchorage bore the brunt of property damage from the quake; it sustained greater losses than all the rest of Alaska combined. Damage was caused by direct seismic vibration, by ground cracks, and by landslides. Direct...

Hansen, Wallace R.
Effects of the earthquake of March 27, 1964, at Anchorage, Alaska: Chapter A in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities; 1965; PP; 542-A; The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities (Professional Paper 542); Hansen, Wallace R.

Publication Thumbnail
Year Published: 1965

Effects of the earthquake of March 27, 1964, at Whittier, Alaska: Chapter B in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities

Whittier, Alaska, lying at the western end of Passage Canal, is an ocean terminal of The Alaska Railroad. The earthquake that shook south-central Alaska at 5:36 p.m. (Alaska Standard Time) on March 27, 1964, took the lives of 13 persons and caused more than $5 million worth of damage to Government and private property at Whittier. Seismic motion...

Kachadoorian, Reuben
Effects of the earthquake of March 27, 1964, at Whittier, Alaska: Chapter B in The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities; 1965; PP; 542-B; The Alaska earthquake, March 27, 1964: effects on communities (Professional Paper 542); Kachadoorian, Reuben

Filter Total Items: 1,101
Copper River sonar on a bridge
April 24, 2019

Copper River sonar on a bridge

Copper River sonar on a bridge

Canning River with Brooks Range in the background
April 24, 2019

Canning River with Brooks Range in the background

Supporting the project of winter habitat of juvenile Dolly Varden in the Canning River.

Knik River bridge aerial view
April 22, 2019

Knik River bridge aerial view

Knik River bridge aerial view

Andrew Reeves retrieving samples at Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska
April 15, 2019

Andrew Reeves retrieving samples at Izembek NWR

Andrew Reeves retrieving samples within Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska as part of USGS research to investigate the persistence of avian influenza viruses in North American wetlands.  USGS scientists and colleagues found that influenza A viruses may remain infectious in surface waters of northern wetlands for more than seven months. 

Sea otter skulls being prepared for archival
March 28, 2019

Sea otter skulls being prepared for archival

Skulls were collected in Spring 2018 & 2019 from coastlines throughout Alaska. It is assumed the animals died of natural causes over the preceding winters. They were collected under Marine Mammal Permit # 067925.

Twentymile River bridge
March 27, 2019

Twentymile River bridge

Twentymile bridge

A photo from the sky of a coastline showing areas of sediment and water as well as land features like roads.
February 26, 2019

Orthophotomosaic image, north coast of Barter Island, July 1, 2014

Aerial photographs were collected from a small, fixed-wing aircraft over the coast of Barter Island, Alaska on July 01 2014, September 07 2014. Precise aircraft position information and structure-from-motion photogrammetric methods were combined to derive a high-resolution orthophotomosaic. This orthophotomosaic contain 3-band, 8-bit, unsigned raster data (red/green/blue;

...
Evidence of turbidity currents in Eklutna Lake triggered by shaking during the 2018 Mw7.1 Anchorage earthquake
February 16, 2019

Evidence of turbidity currents in Eklutna Lake

USGS scientists, working with researchers from the University of Ghent, probed the floor of Eklutna Lake, Anchorage Borough, Alaska, for evidence of turbidity currents triggered by strong shaking during the 2018 Mw7.1 Anchorage earthquake. In this photo, USGS scientist Peter Haeussler points to a dark layer at the top of a sediment core taken from the floor of Eklutna Lake

...
USGS researcher Erich Peitzsch holds a tree cross section to look for irregular rings.
December 31, 2018

Tree ring research in Alaska

USGS researcher Erich Peitzsch holds a tree cross section to look for irregular rings.

UAS undergraduate student Mckenzie Wilson examines a cross section.
December 31, 2018

Tree ring research in Alaska

UAS undergraduate student Mckenzie Wilson examines a cross section.

Map of AK showing probability of change occurrence
December 31, 2018

Map of AK showing probability of change occurrence

Map of Alaska showing probability (%) of change occurrence. Insets show fire boundaries from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Large Fire Database and Landsat 8 imagery (bottom right; 2016) north of Fairbanks, Alaska.

AK CASC and USGS researchers select a field site.
December 31, 2018

Tree ring research in Alaska

AK CASC and USGS researchers select a field site.

Filter Total Items: 283
Lidar image showing the upper parts of the landslide that occurred in northwest Washington on March 22, 2014.
May 14, 2014

Want to know how elevation will benefit your state? The USGS National Geospatial Program is advancing the 3D Elevation Program, known as 3DEP, in response to the growing need for high-quality three-dimensional representations of the Nation’s natural and constructed features.

USGS science for a changing world logo
April 30, 2014

The coastal geology of Simeonof Island, the southeastern-most island in the Shumagin archipelago of the Aleutian Islands, suggests the region has not experienced a great megathrust earthquake in at least the past 3,400 years.

US Topo map of the Cass, West Virginia quadrangle, March 2014.
April 24, 2014

US Topo maps now have a crisper, cleaner design - enhancing readability of maps for online and printed use. Map symbols are easier to read over the digital aerial photograph layer whether the imagery is turned on or off. Improvements to symbol definitions (color, line thickness, line symbols, area fills), layer order, and annotation fonts are additional features of this supplemental release.

USGS
March 27, 2014

Ever since the great magnitude 9.2 earthquake shook Alaska 50 years ago today, scientists have suspected that the quake's rupture halted at the southwestern tip of Kodiak Island due to a natural barrier.

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 20, 2014

Why does the 1964 Great Alaska Earthquake Matter 50 Years Later? Scientific experts will talk about a half-century of scientific and monitoring advances triggered by the 1964 events.

Houses damaged in the 1964 earthquake
March 19, 2014

The U.S. Geological Survey has released two new videos about the Great Alaska Earthquake of March 27, 1964 to commemorate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the largest earthquake ever recorded in the United States. The videos include rare vintage film footage and photos of the earthquake damage, combined with modern interviews with some of the same scientists who first investig

Uplifted sea floor at Cape Cleare on Montague Island in Prince William Sound.
March 18, 2014

To commemorate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the largest earthquake ever recorded in the United States, the U.S. Geological Survey has reissued a series of landmark reports covering the results of investigations of the Great Alaska Earthquake of March 27, 1964.

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 11, 2014

A recent U.S. Geological Survey-led study of the bar-tailed godwit, a shorebird known famously as the ultimate marathon champion of bird flight, suggests that these birds can sense broad weather patterns and optimally time their long, nonstop, transoceanic migrations to destinations thousands of miles away. 

Sea otter in kelp
February 28, 2014

Nearly 25 years after the Exxon Valdez oil spill injured wildlife off the coast of Alaska, a new report issued today by the U.S. Geological Survey indicates that sea otters have returned to pre-spill numbers within the most heavily oiled areas of Prince William Sound.

1964 Great Alaska Earthquake flyer thumbnail
February 24, 2014

On March 27th, 1964, the second largest instrumentally recorded earthquake worldwide rocked southern Alaska for 4 to 5 minutes. In addition to the earthquake, the event triggered a major tsunami that caused casualties and damage from the Kodiak Islands to northern California.

USGS science for a changing world logo
February 20, 2014

It's 1964 in Alaska. Imagine 4.5 minutes of powerful ground shaking underneath you from a magnitude 9.2 earthquake. You and your loved ones are then faced with resulting landslides and a devastating tsunami. You just experienced the largest earthquake ever recorded in North America.