Skip to main content


Creating a network of sensors in an ice core drill

Research Achievements

Creating a network of sensors in an ice core drill

The University of Maine received a $1.6 million grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation as a result of a collaboration initiated through the IGERT Summer Institute. IGERT researchers are collaborating with the Climate Change Institute to develop new chemical gas sensors that can be deployed in an ice core drill for real-time capture and measurement of important gases that document past climate records. Semiconducting metal oxide sensing films are being functionalized to detect trace levels of CH4, CO2, and NH4, and prototype sensor devices are being engineered into an automated sensor measurement system. The major objective of the project is to create a network of sensors embedded within an ice core drill. These in situ high resolution measurements will enable extensive data to be acquired concerning sub-annual temporal resolution and multi-millennial reconstructions of past physical and chemical climate change.