student listing

A Photo of  Kyle Dilliplaine

Contact Information

School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences
147A O'Neill
P.O. Box 757220
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Fairbanks, AK 99775-7220
Phone: (412) 926-2872

Kyle DilliplaineM.S. Student

Marine Biology

Thesis Title

Effects of Oil Entrainment and Migration in Sea Ice on Brine Channel Inhabiting Biota


  • Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS)
  • Benthic Ecology Meeting Society


  • Invertebrate Zoology
  • Benthic Ecology
  • Nutrient Dynamics


  • B.S. 2013 University of North Carolina Wilmington (Marine Biology)

Research Overview

Increased hydrocarbon exploration and ship traffic patterns in the Arctic elevate the risk of a potential oil spill. Ice is present along coastal northern Alaska for most of the year and inhibits traditional containment and clean-up methods used during oil spill response. Oil released under ice originally collects at the ice-water interface and is redistributed in a number of physico- chemical processes. Ice biota, e.g. diatoms, alter the structure of the BCS through the production of Extracellular Polymeric Substances (EPS). Used as a cryo- and osmoprotectant, EPS prevents salt expulsion from the ice resulting in a more connected and porous BCS. Oil migration in sea ice may be significantly influenced by the effects of EPS. Historically, meiofauna have been used as an indicator of environmental health and contaminants in sediments. Taxa-specific toxicological thresholds will be determined for sea ice meiofauna by exposure to various concentrations of oil. A series of sea ice mesocosm experiments will be used to evaluate the effects of high biomass in sea ice on and to oil released under the ice.