polar view banner

About Polar View Lake Ice Service

WHAT IS POLAR VIEW?
Polar View is an international program, offering integrated monitoring and forecasting services in the Polar Regions using satellite earth observation data to support improved decision-making, planning and adaptation to climate change. Polar View services include monitoring services of lake ice, river ice, and ice-edge; and enhanced sea ice information (charts and forecasts), snow maps and glacier and iceberg monitoring data. For more information, please visit the Polar View Portal
WHAT IS THE NUNAVIK ICE SERVICE?
The Nunavik Ice Service provides a Ice Status service to the Nunavik Research Centre of Makivik Corporation and selected communities across the Nunavik region of Northern Quebec, Canada. This service is intended to support research activities and provide information about the state of key waterbodies in the region to the communities of Kangiqusualujjuaq and Kangirsuk. These waterbodies are important over-wintering habitats for Arctic char, an important source of food for the Inuit people of Northern Canada.
The Ice Service provides information on freeze-up, ice presence and ice break-up, supported by additional contextual information, such as weather and ice thickness.
HOW DOES THE ICE SERVICE WORK?
  1. Earth Observation satellites capture images of the earth using RADAR technology. These images are downloaded from the satellite over Gatineau, Quebec and posted on an FTP server.
  2. The satellite images are downloaded by technicians at Hatfield Consultants in West Vancouver, BC.
  3. The images are processed using a set of automated routines to prepare them for interpretation.
  4. An image analyst with experience in lake ice interpretation locates each waterbody within the satellite images and after consideration, assesses the lake status based on the following criteria:
    • Lake Ice Presence 
    • Lake Ice Thickness 
    • Days frozen
  5. The values from this assessment are recorded and entered into a database at Makivik Corporation using a web-connection.
  6. These values are automatically updated in the LIS portal.
Service Delivery Chain
Service Delivery Chain
WHAT WATERBODIES ARE INCLUDED IN THE NUNAVIK ICE SERVICE?
The waterbodies currently included in the study are: 
George River area:
  • Ijjurittuuq
  • Akilasaaluk
  • Tasikallak
  • Qaarlik
  • Uunartualuk
  • Koroc River Section
Payne River 
  • Tasirjuakuluk
  • Ammaluttuq
  • Tasivik
  • Quurngualuk (river narrow section)
  • Qilummijuq (river narrow section)
  • Quurnguapik (river narrow section)
  • Payne River sections 1, 2 and 3
Nephijee System
  • Qamutissait Tasinga
  • Tasirlaq
  • Qaungijartuisivik
  • Tasikallak
  • Tasialuk (Stewart Lake)
  • Kuujjuarusiup Kuunga
Kangiqsualujjuaq
Kangiqsualujjuaq
WHAT OTHER INFORMATION IS PROVIDED BY THE ICE SERVICE?
The Ice Service portal integrates a number of information sources that will be useful to NRC and the communities of Nunavik. These data include: 
  • Temperature and weather at the time of image capture from local weather stations.
  • Current and archived hourly temperatures
  • Other weather data - humidity, wind direction, wind gusts
  • Environment Canada 5-day weather forecasts
Arctic Char
Arctic Char