Faculty of geography
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Khibiny teaching and research station

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Organized in 1948 by Professor G.K.Tushinsky who was its scientific supervisor till 1979. At first the station was situated in Yuksporyok-2 settlement 4 km to the north-east from the town of Kirovsk. In 1984 it was moved to Yuksporyok-1 settlement.

Teaching activities — field training of students aimed at the study of natural features of mountain territories, as well as a wide range of natural processes associated with snow cover. Till the end of the 60-ies the station hosted the general geographical training of the first year students, as well as field training courses for geography students from Tartu, Vilnus and Yaroslavl universities. Since the middle 80-ies students from the departments of the Faculty of Geography, such as Physical Geography of the World and Geoecology, Geomorphology and Palaeogeography, Cartography and Geoinformatics, Meteorology and Climatology, Nature Management, have their special field training there.

Research activities studying the stratigraphy of snow cover and physical mechanical processes of avalanche formation, the thermal and moisture regime in soils, permafrost processes and forms of relief, elaboration of methods to assess the potential influence of avalanches and water-snow flows within the territories of future economic development, mapping and phototeodolite monitoring of processes and phenomena in natural landscapes and on technogenous slopes.

Accomplished research. Principal methods of risk assessment for the territories of future economic development have been elaborated, the engineering measures to protect them against snow avalanches and water-snow flows are suggested. The whole complex of natural features of Khibin Mountains has been described in details, the results being used in a number of Ph.D. and D.Sc. theses.

Future research activities landscape ecological studies, elaboration of methods of operational forecasting for the water-snow flows.

Scientific and academic contacts with the Kola department of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Avalanche Control Service of the Apatity enterprise, Regional Hydrometeorological Department in Murmansk, Polar-Alpine Arboretum and other institutions of the region, as well as numerous higher schools and universities of Russia.

International contacts with Norwegian Geotechnical Institute. During last 8 years the base hosted the geography students from Halle and Gottingen universities (Germany), Helsinki University (Finland), Plymouth University (United Kingdom), Montana University (USA).

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