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Sampling of spring water and travertine to determine chemical content and origianl water source.

The most northerly warm springs in the world occur in isolated areas around Bockfjorden. The waters from these, issuing at between +16° C and +28° C, are rich in carbonate minerals that lead to the development of travertine. In this area there are two groups of springs forming shallow pools with travertine rims. These have been the subject of earlier study by other groups – however further work on these is desirable. After further consultation with those who have carried out the earlier work on the springs, a sampling system for the travertines and/or waters will be agreed.

An additional line of enquiry into these features is the design and installation of appropriate temperature gauges that will remain in-situ during at least one whole year, so that any fluctuations can be recorded for later examination. The mid and long-term temperature variations may be useful in helping to model the relationships between the springs, the glaciers and other possible influences on groundwater flow in this pristine environment.

With annual average temperatures on the general increase, it is hoped that some indication of the possible long-term future of the springs will be able to be made.

In one of the first mentions of these springs, Hoel & Holtedahl are believed to have found another set of travertine deposits in 1911, to the south of the Nygaard glacier. These will be searched for, as they most likely represent another set of, in this case, inactive thermal springs. If they can be found the travertine deposits should provide useful data and, if they have reactivated, waters for sampling will be collected.

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