13th Annual Polar Technology Conference

April 11-12, 2017

Denver, Colorado

About The Conference

The 13th annual Polar Technology Conference (PTC) will be hosted by Polar Field Services.

The PTC brings together polar scientists and technology developers to exchange information on research system operational needs and technology solutions for polar environments. This knowledge exchange helps scientists and engineers address issues of design, implementation, and deployment for systems that enable scientists and agencies to achieve their research goals in the polar regions. The PTC provides a space for those involved in polar technology challenges to “pop the hood” and discuss what works—and what does not.

Traditionally, participants hail from academia, state and federal agencies, the private sector, and non-governmental organizations. Presentations cover system requirements for proposed research along with descriptions of systems and approaches proven successful in polar deployments. Hardware and software topics include, for example, weather stations, robotics, power systems and storage, telemetry, and communications. Scale ranges from autonomous data collection towers to large scale research stations. Polar field sites include those under, on, and above the ice, tundra, or sea.

Discussions on intra- and international cooperation in site deployment and maintenance are encouraged. Informal breaks allow for networking and information exchange. A poster session is also included. Workshops have been held offering tutorial exchanges on specific technologies (e.g., power systems, Iridium). The PTC is pleased to have support from the National Science Foundation's Office of Polar Programs as an endorsement of the concept of bringing together providers and consumers of these technologies in hopes of benefiting from that synergy.

Presentations and a list of participant from the previous conferences can be found here.

Keynote Speakers

Rob Robbins, long-time diving manager for the U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP), will discuss the evolution of diving technology in the USAP. Robbins is the 2016 recipient for the Conrad Limbaugh Memorial Award for Scientific Diving Leadership from the American Academy of Underwater Sciences.



Matthew Shupe, research scientist at NOAA’s Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science at the University of Colorado - Boulder, will discuss technology associated with a year-long expedition into the central Arctic Ocean. As the U.S. coordinator of the Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate (MOSAiC), an international collaboration to study the Arctic climate system, Shupe is working on a number of technology challenges.

Registration and abstract submission

Type Deadline Price
Standard April 5, 2017 $150
Student April 5, 2017 $75
The registration fee includes a lunch buffet and refreshments at the morning and afternoon breaks.

Presentations require an abstract submission by March 28, 2017 for consideration for inclusion in the formal program. Abstracts received after that date will be considered only if there is room in the schedule.

Oral presentations: Presentations will be scheduled for both days. You should allow 20-minutes for the presentation (15-minutes for the slides and 5-minutes for questions and transition). The first day of the conference is expected to follow the plan of previous conferences, with an emphasis on systems generally operating on low power and/or autonomously. The last day will feature larger installations, typically populated sites (e.g., research stations), and ice cap traverses. This format may change, subject to the presentation proposals received.

Poster presentations: A session will be devoted just to posters, where the authors will be available for discussions. The display boards will be available throughout the conference, however, to allow the full set to be viewed at your leisure. The poster session will be held in the afternoon of the second day, April 12th.

An informal Display Area will be provided for project or vendor equipment and/or brochures. A limited number of folding tables will be provided in an unsecured area adjacent to the main conference meeting room. This area may be used for meetings or discussions during breaks and the poster session. Please advise the Steering Committee if you wish table space.

Conference Location

The conference will be held the Polar Field Services (PFS) meeting facility located at:

8100 Shaffer Parkway, #100
Littleton, CO 80127
(303) 984-1450

Polar Field is about 50 miles from Denver International Airport in Littleton, Colorado.

Conference Hotel

Rooms are reserved for conference attendees at the Homewood Suites by Hilton, a 10 minute walk from Polar Field. Reserve lodging by March 21, 2017. Reservations can be make online at Homewood Suites by Hilton Denver - Littleton

Group name:POLAR FIELD SERVICES
Group code:PPP
Rate:$125/night
Homewood Suites by Hilton Denver - Littleton
7630 Shaffer Parkway
Littleton, CO 80127
1-720-981-4763
Room reservations

Special Activities

We will be gathering at the Rox Bar and Grill on Tuesday April 11th from 5-7pm. They are located a few blocks from the meeting venue and hotel. We will have heavy hor d'oeuvres on hand and the tap room has a wonderful selection of Colorado microbrews for purchase. It will be great chance to meet and share ideas.

Rox Bar and Grill
12684 W. Indore Place
Littleton, CO 80127
303-972-2769

Previous Presentations and Participants

2005 Mountain View, California
2006 Mountain View, California
2007 Menlo Park, California
2008 Menlo Park, California
2009 Madison, Wisconsin
2010 Boulder, Colorado
2011 Albuquerque, New Mexico
2012 Fairlee, Vermont
2013 Annapolis, Maryland
2014 Bloomington, Indiana
2015 Denver, Colorado
2016 Denver, Colorado

2012 PTC Meeting Report
2013 PTC Meeting Report
2016 PTC Meeting Report

Contact Information

Please contact the Steering Committee for additional information:

Todd Valentic SRI International (650-859-4642)
Robbie Score Polar Field Services
Satish Chetty Beyond 66
Tracy Dahl Polar Field Services
Kyle Hoppe Antarctic Support Contract
Joe Pettit UNAVCO
Kip Rithner Polar Field Services
Jason Weale Cold Regions Research & Engineering Laboratory