Montana State University

Priscu Research Group

Department of Land Resources
and Environmental Sciences

334 Leon Johnson Hall
Bozeman, MT 59717

Tel: (406) 994-3250
Fax: (406) 994-5863

Priscu Research Group

Lake Bonney and the Taylor Glacier in the McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica
Tent city at the drilling site for Subglacial Lake Whillans on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.
The Bassler ready to take off for Subglacial Lake Whillans on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.
Ice structures on Lake Fryxell formed from the strong winds that blow dust down the Taylor Valley, Antarctica.
Researcher looking for methane seeps on High Arctic lakes near Barrow.
Lake Fryxell camp in the Taylor Valley, Antarctica during the Polar Night.
John Priscu carries a Niskin bottle of sample water from Subglacial Lake Whillans on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

Research In the News

September 2014. "Ten pioneers in technology, biodiversity to receive Stibitz, Wilson awards Oct 1."
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August 2014. "U.S. expedition yields first breakthrough paper about life under Antarctica ice."
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November 2013. "MSU releases television spot about Antarctica research."
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June 2013. "Life under Antarctica's Ice."
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About the Group

The Priscu Research group at Montana State University focuses on understanding the biogeochemistry and microbiology of icy environments. Led by Dr. John Priscu, the group conducts NSF and NASA funded research in both Antarctica and the Arctic, and is a part of the McMurdo Dry Valleys Long-Term Ecological Research (MCM LTER) Program in Antarctica. Current areas of research include:

  1. long term ecological studies of Antarctic lakes,
  2. methane dynamics in Arctic lakes as an analogue for life on other icy worlds,
  3. exploration and geomicrobiology of Antarctic subglacial lakes, and
  4. microbiology, geochemistry and paleoclimate history of polar and temperate ice cores.

The Group is also actively involved in outreach and education. Visit one of the links to the right for details on our currently funded projects.

Current Funded Research Projects

MCM IV: Increased Connectivity in a Polar Desert Resulting from Climate Warming. 2011-2017. Funded by National Science Foundation, Office of Polar Programs.

WISSARDWISSARD (Whillans Ice Stream Subglacial Access Research Drilling). 2009-2013. Funded by National Science Foundation,
Office of Polar Programs.

(WAIS)West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS)Divide ice core. 2009-2012. Funded by National Science Foundation, Office of Polar Programs.

Astrobiology of Icy WorldAstrobiology of Icy Worlds: Habitability, Survivability, and Detectability. 2008-2012. Funded by NASA Astrobiology Institute.