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Access to Northern Infrastructure

Several research projects funded under the Sentinel North program involve sampling or northern work in terrestrial or marine environments. Funding already provided for projects and subprojects supports the cost of transporting passengers and equipment to the north, but significant additional costs for many projects may remain.

Sentinel North provides its researchers with an access to northern infrastructure fund to:

  • Facilitate access to remote research sites by financing, in whole or in part, the charter of small twin otter or helicopter type aircraft (see note 1).
  • Financing, in whole or in part, user fees (accommodation, rental of equipment, etc.) of research stations of the Center for Northern Studies (CEN) or other Nordic land-based research infrastructures.
  • Financing, in whole or in part, the user fees for the CCGS Amundsen Canadian Research Icebreaker (see note 2).

Terms and exclusions

The maximum level of financial support per researcher or Sentinel North project depends on the overall amount requested in a given year. The fund is only available to support research funded under Sentinel North projects. This funding does not cover the cost of transporting personnel and merchandise on commercial flights or hotel accommodation costs (see note 3).

Sentinel North researchers who want to apply for these funds must complete and submit the application form available below before March 31 of each year.  



Note 1. The Polar Continental Shelf Program (PCSP) has been providing essential support to northern researchers for more than 50 years on a competitive basis to access remote northern sampling sites. Some research centers such as the Center for Nordic Studies also offer support to their researchers and collaborators to cover part of these costs. It is expected that all researchers and projects requiring access to an aircraft will file an application for PCSP support (to be filed in October annually) or CEN (if applicable). Funding for Sentinel North will then be used to supplement, in whole or in part, hours not funded by PCSP or other sources.

Note 2. Sentinel North researchers or projects wishing to use the CCGS Amundsen and its equipment in connection with their work should contact Martin Fortier, General Manager of Sentinel North. Applications for a given year will be matched and coordinated together or with other programs to maximize the vessel time required for Sentinel North projects. Only one application will be submitted to Amundsen Science annually on behalf of Sentinel North for all of its projects.

Note 3. The Northern Science Training Program (NSTP) helps defray the travel and living costs of Canadian university students with an interest in northern studies who are conducting a thesis in the northern regions. The contact person for this program at Université Laval is Mrs. Christine Barnard, Scientific Coordinator, Center for Northern Studies.