Soil / Permafrost

What We Do

Campbell Scientific provides rugged, low-power data-acquisition systems for monitoring temperature profiles and other environmental data in extreme freezing conditions. The versatility of our dataloggers, including the availability of various and communication ports, supports a wide range of communication options to retrieve data, including satellite options such as GOES and ARGOS. Learn more

Check out some awesome examples of what our equipment can do in this area

Customise a System

In addition to our standard systems available, many of the systems we provide are customised. Tell us what you need, and we’ll help you configure a system that meets your exact needs.


We offer a variety of products that can be used to create systems for Permafrost. Many of the major components used to create these systems are listed below. Please let us know if we can help you configure a system.

More Details about Our Permafrost Systems

From single research stations to large networks, Campbell Scientific monitoring systems are commonly used worldwide in permafrost research. Our systems are widely deployed in both high latitude and high altitude applications, facing the coldest and harshest conditions. Our flexible equipment is used for cold climate structural research, and has measured permafrost, hydrological, and meteorological conditions in the Arctic, sub-Arctic, and Antarctic, and on the world’s great mountain peaks. Long-term, unattended station operation is achieved with low-power use, batteries and solar panels, wireless data retrieval, and large on-board data storage capacity. For example, stations installed in the summer have the capability to monitor conditions while “overwintering.” For all this capability, our dataloggers can be quite small, making them easily transportable in a backpack.


Our monitoring stations are based around a programmable datalogger (typically a CR1000 or CR3000) that measures the sensors, then stores and transmits the data. We designed our dataloggers to provide a high level of station customization. They have programmable execution intervals, operating temperature ranges down to -55˚C, onboard instructions for commonly used sensors, and adequate input channels to accommodate many different sensor configurations.

If needed, channel capacity can be expanded using multiplexers, including a model designed specifically for thermocouples. Our dataloggers interface directly to most sensors, eliminating external signal conditioning. Powerful on-board instruction sets allow unattended control decisions based on time or conditional events. For example, peripherals such as heaters or specialized sensors can be actuated based on temperature, wind speed, solar radiation, or some other measured parameter or event. These instruction sets contain programmed algorithms that process measurements and output results in the desired units of measure. Wind vector, wet bulb, histogram, and sample on maxima or minima are all standard to the datalogger instruction sets.

Measurement processing and data storage are programmable, but measurements are typically processed and stored at hourly and daily intervals (e.g., maxima, minima, averages). True averages can be calculated and stored by the dataloggers. Conditional outputs can also be processed and stored. For example, data can be stored at faster intervals based on events such as increased wind speeds or subnormal temperatures.


Almost any sensor can be measured by our dataloggers, allowing stations to be customized for each site. Typical sensors used with our stations include, but are not limited to: relative humidity, solar radiation, wind speed and direction, temperature (air, water, and soil), precipitation, snow depth, barometric pressure, soil moisture, and water quality, as well as strain gages, accelerometers, pressure transducers, GPS receivers, linear potentiometers, Time Domain Reflectometry, and many more.

Data Retrieval

We offer multiple communication options for data retrieval, allowing stations to meet exact needs. Telecommunication options include radio frequency, satellite (Argos, GOES), telephone (landline, voice-synthesized, cellular), short-haul, and multi-drop. On-site options include storage module, laptop computer, and datalogger keyboard/display. Robust error-checking and low-power use ensure your data arrives uncorrupted and as scheduled. We can even help you post your data to the Internet.


Our Windows-based software simplifies datalogger programming, data retrieval, and report generation. The datalogger program can be modified at any time to accommodate different sensor configurations or new data processing requirements.

Case Studies

Alaska: Eddy Covariance
Scientists and land-use managers have long recognized the importance of forest lands for their more
Canadian High Arctic: Permafrost Research
The Canadian Permafrost Monitoring Network provides long-term field observations of active layer and permafrost more
Swiss Alps: Glacier Research
Swiss scientists are probing centuries-old glaciers in the hope of discovering new environmental and more
ZERO: High Arctic Ecosystem Research
Researchers from the Danish Polar Center in Copenhagen are using Campbell Scientific instrumentation in more

Related Documents