Programme for the Polar Night Week 2023

The fifth SIOS Polar Night Week took place in Longyearbyen, 23-27 January 2023 - with a possibility to participate remotely in most of the sessions.

Venue: Svalbard Science Centre (& Webex)

Download programme overview HERE.

Are you in need of data management advice?

Make an appointment with our data managers at registration and get a tailored guidance!

Monday, 23 January 2023

16:30 - 17:30 - Arrival and registration

Registration desk in front of the SIOS offices in Svalbard Science Centre.

17:30 - 18:30 - SESS report release (Hybrid)   ----- SCIENCE and music -----

Release of the State of the Environmental Science (SESS) report 2022

Location: Svalbard Museum

This session was live-streamed on youtube.

19:00 - 20:30 - Icebreaker

Location: Svalbard Museum

  • Finger food and mingling
  • The exhibition will be open

Tuesday, 24 January 2023

08:30 - 09:00 - Welcome to PNW 2023 (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

  • Welcome by the director of SIOS Heikki Lihavainen
  • Welcome addresses by Pål Sørgaard (RCN) and Dr. Hyoung Chul Shin (KOPRI).
09:00 - 10:00 - Updates from SIOS-KC and SIOS working groups (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

SIOS Knowledge Centre (SIOS-KC) and the chairs of the 5 SIOS working groups will present the highlights from 2022 and the plans for 2023.

10:00 - 10:30 - Coffee break

Location: Canteen

Coffee/tea/water and a chat

10:30 - 12:30 - Working group meetings (Hybrid)

Parallel meetings of SOAG, RICC, RSWG, SDMS WG, IAG.

Meeting rooms (please check poster at registration desk for directions):

  • SOAG: Van Mijen
  • RICC: Hornsund
  • RSWG: Møysalen
  • SDMS WG: Computer lab 2
  • IAG: SIOS office

Links for virtual participation and agendas will be distributed by the SIOS responsible for the respective working groups.

12:30 - 13:30 - Lunch

Location: Canteen

Bring your food vouchers.

13:30 - 15:00 - Harmonising data and data delivery (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

The session focuses on the importance of good practices in creating datasets. The talks will have some time for questions after, and the final 15 min of the session are reserved for open Q/A.

  • Introduction to the session (Ilkka Matero, SIOS-KC)
  • Why calibrations, uncertainties and metrological traceability matter in environmental measurements (Andrea Merlone, INRIM)
  • Introduction to publishing FAIR data (Luke Marsden, UNIS)
  • Status of SDMS interoperability and harvesting (Øystein Godøy,
  • How to use the Data Access Portal (Øystein Godøy,
15:00 - 16:00 - Posters and tea ('Hybrid')

Location: Canteen

Drink a cup of coffee/tea and connect over your recent posters! Online participants are warmly welcome to engage via Padlet, but must brew their own tea.

  • All posters will be available to view HERE on padlet from 18 January, and the padlet will remain open for comments and questions for the whole Polar Night Week.
  • Printed posters should be A0 portrait, and presenters must remove their posters from the poster boards no later than 13:00 on 26 January.

List of posters for in-person session

Poster number Title Presenter
1 Quantification of heavy metal discharge with freshwater runoff to an Arctic fjord ecosystem (Hornsund, Spitsbergen)  Agata Zaborska
2 Signature of wedgelets during the St Patrick's Day Storm, 17 March 2015 Audrey Schillings
3 Using permafrost and meteorological observations in a climate change response system in Longyearbyen Hanne H. Christiansen
4 Ny-Ålesund Research Station Ingrid Kjerstad
5 Spatio-temporal variability of suspended particulate matter in a high-Arctic estuary (Adventfjorden, Svalbard) using Sentinel-2 Janne E. Søreide
6 Satellite-derived photosynthetically available radiation at the coastal Arctic seafloor Janne E. Søreide
7 Arctic terrestrial seeps; an overlooked microbial methane sink? Dimitri Kalenitchenko
8 Svalbard Science Forum, added value through cooperation. Karoline Bælum
9 Are barnacle geese timing their spring migration to climate change? Maarten Loonen
10 The state of Svalbard coastal systems - recent progress and future challenges Mateusz Strzelecki
11 LONGHORN Long-term oceanographic monitoring in Hornsund Mateusz Moskalik
12  "RAW - RETREAT AND WITHER" What is the influence of glaciers recession from tidewater to land-based on the marine biological production and biogeochemistry in the Arctic? Mateusz Moskalik
13 Eidembukta Project: formation of a new coastal lagoon ecosystem after glacier retreat Sergej Olenin
14 Greenhouse gases from Arctic Lagoons: biogeochemical processes and projections in warming ecosystems of Svalbard (project and preliminary results). Tobia Politi
15 Distributed Acoustic Sensing for cryoseismological research in Svalbard - strategic grant initiative Wojciech Gajek
16 Continuous wind wave data in Hornsund since 2013 Zuzanna Swirad
17 Spatial variation of major and trace elements composition in subsurface water of small permafrost catchment (Bellsund, Svalbard) Sara Lehmann-Konera
18 Distribution and diversity of the limno-terrestrial moss-dwelling microfauna in the context of glacial retreat in Trygghamna, Svalbard Dzmitry Lukashanets
19   Stein Tore Pedersen
20 Interdisciplinary Polar Studies 2023 Modular Meeting: Arctic Amplification-Glaciers-Environment (IPS-2023) Ela Lepkowska
21 Living on Frozen Ground as concept for a Shared Arctic Variable Heikki Lihavainen
22 Svalbard Strategic Grant and SIOS Data Management add-on Ilkka Matero
23 Diversity and Equity in SIOS SIOS-KC
24 Who is who in SIOS SIOS-KC
16:00 - 17:30 - CRIOS open session (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

The project “Cryosphere Integrated Observatory Network on Svalbard (CRIOS)” will present their aims and ambitions.

Introduction - Michał Laska
Monitoring Network:
- Glacier and snow monitoring - Bartłomiej Luks/Jean-Charles Gllet
- Meteorological monitoring - Dariusz Ignatiuk
- Eddy Covariance System – Anna Sjöblom
- Permafrost monitoring - Mateusz Strzelecki
- Remote sensing-based monitoring - Shridhar Jawak

18:00 - 20:00 - SIOS ECR Polar Meet Night (Invited participants only)

Location: Game room of MaryAnn Polarrigg (Vinterhagen)

Polar Bingo and networking through speed research dating. 
And of course, enjoy finger food while mingling!

Note: This event is open to invited participants only! 

Wednesday, 25 January 2023

08:30 - 09:30 - Keynote: Jean-Charles Gallet (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

  • Welcome from SIOS-KC and practical information of the day
  • Keynote by Jean-Charles Gallet, Norwegian Polar Institute - Tentative title: Snow activities
  • Abstract: Snow is one the main interface between the atmosphere and the Earth surface and plays a critical climatic role in the polar regions. Snowpack builds up following synoptic events by the form of precipitation and/or wind re-distribution and melts out following warming, even during winter and often with help of liquid precipitation nowadays. Climate warming affect temperature and global atmospheric and oceanic circulation with changes on precipitation patterns and consequently on the snowpack formation, its duration over the season and its rate of metamorphism. Our work since InfraNor started in 2017 has focused on establishing automatic station on glacier to monitor continuously basic snow and atmospheric parameter year round in Ny-Ålesund. Further development allows us now to have part of our stations sending data to the server. We will first present briefly the infrastructure and data we collect, with en emphasis on the challenges we encountered. Improving our observations of changes in snow properties in the Arctic is our goal but is only a first step in the understanding these changes will have on the Arctic climate and its functioning ecosystems, both terrestrial and marine. This is why a further development of the snow infrastructure should now focus on coupling with other geophysical spheres and we must anticipate our future data needs in a changing environment which consequently impose logistical and technological challenges. This is the primary goal of the snow agenda paper, a jointly paper developed by a multidisciplinary community of experts and SIOS-KC following the PNW 2021 snow workshop. We will present the outcomes of that work, our views and thinking and the current on-going snow pilot project in order to stimulate discussions for future observations and projects under the SIOS umbrella.
09:30 - 10:15 -  Strategic session: Big wheel keeps on turning 1/2 (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

During this session we will discuss how SIOS should evolve to increase its attractiveness for the user.


  • SIOS as research infrastructure (Heikki Lihavainen)
  • The SESS report synthesis (Hanne Christiansen)
  • The optimisation strategy (Kim Holmén)
  • SIOS core data (Ilkka Matero)
10:15 - 10:45 - Talk: The Arctic Economic Council (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

Speaker: Mads Qvist Frederiksen, Executive director of the Arctic Economic Council

The Arctic region is getting warmer and has become a symbol for climate change but how can researchers communicate with policy makers and the private sector to make a difference? And how can local communities benefit from Arctic research? Mads Qvist Frederiksen from the Arctic Economic Council (AEC) will give some brief inputs to this. AEC is an international Arctic business membership organisation based out of Tromsø, Norway.

10:45 - 11:15 - Coffee break

Location: Canteen

  • Stretch your legs
11:15 - 12:30 - Strategic session: Big wheel keeps on turning 2/2 (Hybrid)

Breakout group 1: Kapp Schoultz
Breakout group 2: Kapp Wijk
Breakout group 3: Møysalen
Breakout group 4: Lassegrotte
Plenary: Møysalen

During this session we will discuss how SIOS should evolve to increase its attractiveness for the user.

Discussions in break-out sessions and reporting of results in plenary.

12:30 - 13:30 - Lunch

Location: Canteen

Bring your food vouchers.

13:30 - 15:00 - Mini-workshops

Check the poster at the registration desk for directions to the meeting rooms.

Parallel workshops

WS 1: Data access tournament

Location: Computer lab 1

Are you good in finding data? Or do you find using the Data Access Portal challenging? Join this mini-workshop for finding specific information in the DAP and learn how to use its features in a fun way. SIOS-KC is hoping for feedback on experiences and challenges people have with the portal, to be able to make it more used and user-friendly.

WS 2: Citizen science in Svalbard - a scoping workshop

Location: Møysalen

Join us to discuss the potential of citizen science activities in developing an observing system and how these observations can be useful for cal/val activities for researchers. Our scoping workshop will deliver a summary of citizen science observations and efforts within the Svalbard science community.

Programme: Click HERE
Help us: Please fill in this 5-minute survey to know our audience.

WS 3 How to make a good communication video

Location: Kapp Lee

During the first part of this workshop we will introduce you to storytelling and the art of making a short and concise video. In the second part you will be making your own videos with help of your mobile phone, putting the just learnt theory in practise!


  • Heidi Sevestre, glaciologist - science communication: Storytelling in social media
  • Simen Salomonsen Hjelle, UNIS: Technical tips and tricks

------ Important: bring your CHARGED phone and make sure you have internet access! ------


15:00 - 15:30 - Coffee break

Location: Canteen

Refresh and exchange your workshop experiences

15:30 - 16:30 - InfraNor meeting (open part) (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

"SIOS – Infrastructure development of the Norwegian node (SIOS-InfraNor)" will present the projects' progress, including new research infrastructure established.

  • Module 6: Management – Welcome and introduction to the project
  • Module 1: Atmosphere – Status of implemented research infrastructure  (Wenche Aas, NILU)
  • Module 2: Land – COAT implemented research infrastructure 2016 (Stein Tore Pedersen, NPI)
  • Module 3: Ocean – Update on InfraNor marine projects (< not defined yet >, ...)
  • Module 4: Common infrastructure –  New technologies, InfraNor infrastructure achievement (Rune Storvold, NORCE)
  • Module 5: Data management – Status of InfraNor data integration (Øystein Godøy)
  • Q&A
16:30 - 17:30 - InfraNor meeting (closed part) (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

Internal working meeting for the InfraNor project members.

16:30 - 17:30 - Side meetings

Side-Meeting 1: SIOS ECR Network Meeting

Location: Van Mijen

This meeting will discuss the concept of building a Svalbard Early Career Researcher (ECR) Network. We will discuss initial ideas, develop a strategic plan and plan next steps. If you identify as an ECR, please come along! Please contact our ECR observer William Harcourt ( for more information.

Side-Meeting 2: SESS report 2022 Editorial Board meeting (closed)

Location: SIOS office

Final meeting of the Editorial Board of the SESS report 2022.


We have arranged some rooms in case participants want to arrange a side meeting, e.g. to discuss their optimisation call proposals. Please contact in case you want to book a room.

19:00 - 22:00 - Conference dinner

Location: Vinterhagen - MaryAnn Polarrigg

After dinner, the game room will be open - buy your own drinks and hang out with the gang!

Thursday, 26 January 2023

08:30 - 09:30 - Keynote: Andy Hodson (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

  • Welcome from SIOS-KC and practical information of the day
  • Gas through Cracks, a keynote by Andy Hodson (UNIS) - the Principal Investigator of the team that won the SIOS Innovation Award 2021
  • Short safety briefing for excursion (MANDATORY for excursion participants)

Gas through cracks: developing a remote monitoring platform for establishing methane emissions across Svalbard’s landscape
Andy Hodson (University Centre In Svalbard and Western Norway University of Applied Sciences)
Sebastian Sikora (University Centre In Svalbard)
Dimitri Kalenitchenko (University of Tromsø and La Rochelle Université)
Knowledge about methane emissions from Arctic permafrost landscapes undergoing thaw is a vital contributor to climate change science on account of its potency as a greenhouse gas. Current permafrost emission estimates do not rigorously include methane escape from beneath permafrost, and have instead prioritised near surface emission sources from landscapes that are not very representative of Svalbard. Our research funded by the Norwegian Research Council (CLIMAGAS Project 294764) discovered that such “sub-permafrost emissions” are in fact commonplace in Svalbard, releasing up to 108 kg CH4 year, and thus representing about 10% of the methane emissions declared by Norway in association with its energy sector. Our SIOS-funded TerraSeep Project therefore sought to establish and implement a remote platform for continuous methane emission at important sites across the Svalbard landscape. A good, local example is Lagoon Pingo, ca. 2 km from Longyearbyen, where about 1 ton of natural gas is emitted throughout the year. This presentation will therefore describe the work undertaken at Lagoon Pingo and the challenges presented by the harsh, variable conditions found there. We will also introduce the technological demands imposed by trying to have continuous measurements of gas release from the land surface, and describe where we think we should be focussing upon methane emissions in future.

09:30 - 10:00 - Coffee break

Location: Canteen

Coffee/tea/water and chats

10:00 - 11:30 - Polar Night Seminar (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

SIOS Early Career researchers will present their work:

10:00-10:10: Ugo Nanni, University of Oslo, Norway

Title of the talk: Understanding the destabilization of Kongsvegen, an Arctic surge-type glacier.

10:10-10:20: Marie Bøe Henriksen, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

Title of the talk: HYPSO-1 CubeSat with hyperspectral imager over Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard

10:20-10:30: Sagar F. Wankhede, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, India

Title of the talk: The Supraglacial Terrain: Revisiting the fundamentals of image processing for mapping glacier facies

10:30-10:40: Annelies Voordendag,  University of Innsbruck, Austria

Title of the talk: Automated terrestrial laser scanning for snow and avalanche monitoring in Svalbard – a feasibility study

10:40-10:50: Prashant Pandit, University of Trento, Italy

Title of the talk: How precisely can we map glaciers in Svalbard?

10:50-11:00: William Harcourt, University of Aberdeen, U.K

Title of the talk: The SIOS Unified Platform for Satellite Data Availability over Svalbard: Status & Perspectives

11:00-11:10: Sara Aparício, Solenix for ESA, Italy

Title of the talk: Updates from SIOS training course on AI4Svalbard, social media and user requirement survey

11:10-11:20: Zuzanna Świrad, Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland

Title of the talk: SIOS citizen science project: first steps

11:20-11:30: Q/A and Discussion

11:30 - 12:30 - Lunch

Location: Canteen

Bring your food vouchers.

12:30 - 15:30 - Excursion

Location: UNIS reception

Visit Lagoon Pingo to learn about TerraSeep, a SIOS Innovation Award project led by Andy Hodson.

Bring warm windproof clothes, a windproof hat and gloves, and warm shoes! If you have a head lamp and boot chains, this is the occasion to bring them. And do not forget the reflective vest so we can find you in the dark!

Group 1: 12:30 - 14:30 (meet at UNIS reception no later than 12:20)
Group 2: 13:30 - 15:30 (meet at UNIS reception no later than 13:20)

You will find a list at the registration desk that will tell you in which group you are.

14:30 - 16:30 - CRIOS meeting (closed)

Location: Kapp Schoultz

Internal working meeting for the CRIOS project participants

16:30 - 17:00 - Coffee break
For CRIOS meeting and side meetings.
17:00 - 18:30 - CRIOS Steering Committee meeting (closed)

Location: Kapp Schoultz

Internal meeting

15:30 - 18:00 - Side meetings

Side-Meeting 1: Safety and logistics Task Force (closed)

Location: Kapp Lee



We have arranged some rooms in case participants want to arrange a side meeting, e.g. to discuss their optimisation call proposals. Please contact in case you want to book a room.

19:00 - 21:00 - Project dinner (CRIOS)

Location: Funken Lodge

For CRIOS members (by invitation only)

Friday, 27 January 2023

08:30 - 09:15 - Keynote: Hanne Christiansen (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

  • Welcome from SIOS-KC and practical information of the day
  • Keynote by Hanne Christiansen (UNIS) - The unique Nordic Arctic – large interdisciplinary research and higher education potential: Bridging the Fram Strait
  • Abstract: One of the ambitions of Svalbard research is to be able to position this at pan-Arctic scale. With the Svalbard Integrated Earth Observing System (SIOS) now well established, it is possible to focus even more on increased collaboration with other Arctic observing systems. At the same time the Greenland Integrated Observing System (GIOS) has also been established with some of the same overall objectives as SIOS. Also, the largest climatic gradient in the high Arctic exists between warm Svalbard and cold Greenland. The SIOS Science Optimisation Advisory Group (SOAG) has therefore worked on establishing closer collaboration between SIOS and GIOS. A Svalbard Strategic Grant (SSG) project is now running focussing on increasing this collaboration – how to best bridge the Fram Strait making use of the unique resources that SIOS and GIOS together provide. Areas of potential collaboration has been identified both within research, higher education, and logistics. However, it is important to have as much input towards how we increase this collaboration the best possible way, which we will therefore discuss after this presentation.   
09:15 - 09:45 - Panel discussion: Bridging the Fram Strait (Hybrid)

Location: Møysalen

  • Pål Sørgaard, RCN
  • Vito Vitale, CNR
  • Rune Storvold, NORCE
  • Hanne Christiansen, UNIS
  • Dariusz Ignatiuk, Univ Silesia
09:45 - 10:15 - Coffee break

Location: Canteen

Get a cup of tea and make appointments with your SIOS friends for future joint activities

10:15 - 11:00 - Wrap-up with panel discussion (Hybrid) 

Location: Møysalen

Wrap-up of PNW 2023 by Heikki Lihavainen and a panel with chairs and vice-chairs of the working groups and the Board of Directors

11:00 - 11:30 - Lunch (take away)

Location: Canteen

Bring your food vouchers and take a lunch bag before catching the bus to the airport.