Site Investigation

A site inspection with experts will reveal valuable information on possible permafrost existence and extent. Surficial geomorphological, geological and hydrological features help in site assessment. Simple tests, such as measuring temperatures in surface water or digging into the ground will further provide information on possible permafrost existence. Remote sensing using aerial photogrammetry, airborne LiDAR, InSAR and other technologies (Kaab, 2008), and permafrost distribution modelling (Riseborough et al., 2008) are important tools during the early design process and should also be used for planning the site investigations. However, site visits and desk studies using remote sensing data are only the beginning of a thorough site investigation programme that is required for structures to be built in or on mountain permafrost.

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