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CARD is a medium- to long-term research & development initiative in collaboration with industry, dedicated to responsible, cost-effective hydrocarbon development in Arctic regions.

Ian Turnbull, Ph.D.

Ice Researcher

Dr. Ian Turnbull joined C-CORE in August 2013 as an Ice Researcher with CARD’s Ice Mechanics team. He holds a Ph.D. in Geophysics from the University of Chicago (2008); his thesis explored the effects of atmospheric surface pressure gradients on the drift of large tabular icebergs in the Ross Sea, Antarctica.  This work included construction of an iceberg drift model, and analysis of metocean and iceberg drift data.  Before joining C-CORE, Dr. Turnbull worked with Canatec Associates International in Calgary; his projects included sea ice and iceberg drift modeling and forecasting, as well as ice environment analyses for major oil and gas exploration zones.  His field experience includes development and testing of sea ice forecast models for the Beaufort Sea, and development and operational use of an iceberg drift forecast model in Baffin Bay.  Dr. Turnbull has experience in ice thickness measurement using a variety of mechanical and remote-sensing methods.  He has also served as a visiting professor at the University of Illinois (Chicago) and at DePaul University, and as a research assistant at Yale University.

Dr. Turnbull’s current research focuses on sea ice freeze-up/break-up, drift patterns and convergence/divergence off the coast of Labrador. Funded by the Research & Development Corporation of Newfoundland & Labrador (RDC) under its RDC Ignite program, the project seeks better understanding of the timing of seasonal coastal ice break-up, as well as the sea ice drift patterns that can block access to Labrador ports and harbours, and to better predict the convergence of pack ice creating pressure ridges that can impede vessel traffic in the Labrador Sea.  Specific project goals are to establish a database catalogue of Newfoundland & Labrador coastal ice break-up/freeze-up timing, drift patterns, and convergence/divergence events, to improve understanding of the these phenomena in the context of the metocean mechanisms affecting them, and to generate better models to predict these phenomena. The ultimate objective of the project is to inform and support vessel routing and scheduling in the Labrador Sea and access to ports and harbours on the Labrador coast.