Dr. Fabrice Calmels is Permafrost and geoscience research Chair at the YukonU Research Centre where he has developed a vibrant permafrost research program over the past decade.
During is PhD at Laval University, Fabrice has studied permafrost in Nunavik, and pioneered CT Scan methods applied to permafrost with Pr. Michel Allard. During this time he also gained expertise from research that he has carried along airports and as well as in Inuit communities. He fell under the Spell of the Yukon when doing field work in the fabled Klondike as a postdoc fellow with Pr. Duane Froese at University of Alberta.
He moved to Whitehorse in 2014 stared to build an applied research program on impact of permafrost thaw on landscapes, communities and their traditional land, and linear infrastructures. Having the northerners’ need in mind, he has developed the Permafrost & Geoscience Research group, which serves for his work, and provide strong technical and logistical support to his collaborators.
The Permafrost and Geoscience team has worked across northern Canada to assess and mitigate permafrost thaw through collaborations with communities, governments, industry and other academic institutions. Their exceptional position has northern-based scientists led the team to become “Jack of all Trades”. Their expertise consists of geomorphologic assessment and mapping; permafrost coring and geotechnical analyses; cryostrigraphic studies; permafrost and environmental monitoring (telemetry) including ground thermal regime and weather; geophysical surveying using electrical-resistivity tomography (ERT) and ground penetrating radar (GPR); aerial imagery and topographical modelling using UAV and photogrammetry.
Fabrice’s research program aims to provide the most reliable information needed to prepare for and address the impacts of a thawing permafrost on northern society. This research supports risk assessments, and the development of innovative technologies to inform communities and northern organizations to make informed decision-making and contribute to the safety and well-being of northerners. Recently Yukon University has received a $400,000 donation from the BMO Financial Group to support the establishment of a permafrost institute at the YukonU Research Centre under Fabrice’s supervision. This five-year commitment enables continued innovation in YukonU’s permafrost research and contributes to the development of forward-thinking solutions to address the challenges permafrost thaw is bringing Canada’s North.